MIME::Type - Definition of one MIME type


 use MIME::Types;
 my $mimetypes = MIME::Types->new;
 my MIME::Type $plaintext = $mimetypes->type('text/plain');
 print $plaintext->mediaType;   # text
 print $plaintext->subType;     # plain
 my @ext = $plaintext->extensions;
 print "@ext"                   # txt asc c cc h hh cpp
 print $plaintext->encoding     # 8bit
 if($plaintext->isBinary)       # false
 if($plaintext->isAscii)        # true
 if($plaintext->equals('text/plain') {...}
 if($plaintext eq 'text/plain') # same
 print MIME::Type->simplified('x-appl/x-zip') #  'appl/zip'


MIME types are used in MIME entities, for instance as part of e-mail and HTTP traffic. Sometimes real knowledge about a mime-type is need. Objects of MIME::Type store the information on one such type.

This module is built to conform to the MIME types of RFC's 2045 and 2231. It follows the official IANA registry at and the collection kept at


overload: string comparison

When a MIME::Type object is compared to either a string or an other MIME::TYpe, the equals() method is called. Comparison is smart, which means that it extends common string comparison with some features which are defined in the related RFCs.

overload: stringification

The stringification (use of the object in a place where a string is required) will result in the type name, the same as type() returns.

Example: use of stringification

 my $mime = MIME::Type->new('text/html');
 print "$mime\n";   # explicit stringification
 print $mime;       # implicit stringification




Create (instantiate) a new MIME::Type object which manages one mime type.

 Option    --Default
 encoding    <depends on type>
 extensions  []
 simplified  <derived from type>
 system      undef
 type        <required>

. encoding => '7bit'|'8bit'|'base64'|'quoted-printable'

How must this data be encoded to be transported safely. The default depends on the type: mimes with as main type text/ will default to quoted-printable and all other to base64.

. extensions => REF-ARRAY

An array of extensions which are using this mime.

. simplified => STRING

The mime types main- and sub-label can both start with x-, to indicate that is a non-registered name. Of course, after registration this flag can disappear which adds to the confusion. The simplified string has the x- thingies removed and are translated to lower-case.

. system => REGEX

Regular expression which defines for which systems this rule is valid. The REGEX is matched on $^O.

. type => STRING

The type which is defined here. It consists of a type and a sub-type, both case-insensitive. This module will return lower-case, but accept upper-case.



Returns the type of encoding which is required to transport data of this type safely.


Returns a list of extensions which are known to be used for this mime type.



Returns the simplified mime type for this object or the specified STRING. Mime type names can get officially registered. Until then, they have to carry an x- preamble to indicate that. Of course, after recognition, the x- can disappear. In many cases, we prefer the simplified version of the type.

Example: results of simplified()

 my $mime = MIME::Type->new(type => 'x-appl/x-zip');
 print $mime->simplified;                     # 'appl/zip'
 print $mime->simplified('text/plain');       # 'text/plain'
 print MIME::Type->simplified('x-xyz/x-abc'); # 'xyz/abc'


Returns the regular expression which can be used to determine whether this type is active on the system where you are working on.


Returns the long type of this object, for instance 'text/plain'



Compare this mime-type object with a STRING or other object. In case of a STRING, simplification will take place.


Returns false when the encoding is base64, and true otherwise. All encodings except base64 are text encodings.


Returns true when the encoding is base64.


Mime-types which are not registered by IANA nor defined in RFCs shall start with an x-. This counts for as well the media-type as the sub-type. In case either one of the types starts with x- this method will return false.


Returns true when the type is in the list of known signatures.


The media type of the simplified mime. For 'text/plain' it will return 'text'.

For historical reasons, the 'mainType' method still can be used to retreive the same value. However, that method is deprecated.


The sub type of the simplified mime. For 'text/plain' it will return 'plain'.


Error: Type parameter is obligatory.

When a MIME::Type object is created, the type itself must be specified with the type option flag.


This module is part of MIME-Types distribution version 1.20, built on June 08, 2007. Website:


Copyrights 1999,2001-2007 by Mark Overmeer. For other contributors see ChangeLog.

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself. See