The Why behind UUencoding and Other Schemes
Some Internet protocols were not designed to carry binary (program and other non-text files) files. They are able only to transfer messages made up of conventional text (printable ASCII) characters. In order to get around that limitation, UUencode and other encoding methods were created.
These solutions all perform the same basic operation: they encode the non-transferable binary file into ASCII characters that the e-mail system can handle. The person receiving the message can then decode the strings of characters to recreate the original file. Perhaps you have seen one of these completely unintelligible messages; here's an example:
_=_ Part 001 of 001 of file encoded.txt
begin 666 encoded.txt
WinZip® can easily open and extract UUencoded, XXencoded, BinHex, and MIME files (base64, plain/text, and quoted-printable) that have been sent to you, and create Uuencoded files for you to send.
To continue reading this article, open Help from within WinZip (quick access: press the [F1] button on your keyboard), select the 'Index' tab, and type in 'uuencoded'. Double click the index entry for 'uuencoded', and from the options displayed in the Picklist, double-click on 'UUencoded, XXencoded, BinHex, and MIME files'.