encode a file in 7-bit characters 



uuencode [file] remote


uuencode translates a binary file into a special code that consists entirely of printable characters. A file encoded in this way is generally safe for transmission over networks and phone lines. uuencode is often used to send binary files through electronic mail.

If a file is specified on the uuencode command line, uuencode reads that file as input; otherwise, it reads the standard input. uuencode always writes the encoded result to the standard output.

The remote command line argument specifies the name that the file is given after it is decoded with uudecode. The first line of the encoded file records the file's permissions and the remote argument.

The encoded version of the data is about 35% larger than the original. If the size is a problem, you can shrink the file with mkszip before encoding it. The recipient must decode it and then uncompress it.

Since the encoded file consists entirely of printable characters, you may use a text editor like Vi to edit the file. Of course, the only things you are likely to edit are the permissions or the name of the remote file.


This command line encodes the file long_name.tar.Z so it decodes with the name arc.trz and redirects the output to arc.uue:

uuencode long_name.tar.Z arc.trz > arc.uue


Possible exit status values are:


Successful completion.


Failure because of an invalid command line option, or a missing command line argument.


POSIX.2. x/OPEN Portability Guide 4.0. Windows 8.1. Windows Server 2012 R2. Windows 10. Windows Server 2016. Windows Server 2019. Windows 11. Windows Server 2022. Generally found on most UNIX systems.


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PTC MKS Toolkit 10.4 Documentation Build 39.