Creating and sending email in Silverstripe CMS is done through the Email and Mailer classes. This document covers how to create an Email instance, customise it with a HTML template, then send it through a custom Mailer.


Silverstripe CMS provides an API over the top of the SwiftMailer PHP library which comes with an extensive list of "transports" for sending mail via different services.

Out of the box, Silverstripe CMS will use the built-in PHP mail() command via the Swift_MailTransport class. If you'd like to use a more robust transport to send mail you can swap out the transport used by the Mailer via config:

  Swift_Transport: Swift_SendmailTransport

For example, to use SMTP, create a file app/_config/email.yml:

Name: myemailconfig
  - '#emailconfig'
    class: Swift_SmtpTransport
      Port: <port>
      Encryption: tls
      Username: [ setUsername, ['`APP_SMTP_USERNAME`'] ]
      Password: [ setPassword, ['`APP_SMTP_PASSWORD`'] ]
      AuthMode: [ setAuthMode, ['login'] ]

Note the usage of backticks to designate environment variables for the credentials - ensure you set these in your .env file or in your webserver configuration.


Sending plain text only

use SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email;

$email = new Email($from, $to, $subject, $body);

Sending combined HTML and plain text

By default, emails are sent in both HTML and Plaintext format. A plaintext representation is automatically generated from the system by stripping HTML markup, or transforming it where possible (e.g. <strong>text</strong> is converted to *text*).

$email = new Email($from, $to, $subject, $body);
The default HTML template for emails is named GenericEmail and is located in vendor/silverstripe/framework/templates/SilverStripe/Email/. To customise this template, copy it to the app/templates/Email/ folder or use setHTMLTemplate when you create the Email instance.


HTML emails can use custom templates using the same template language as your website template. You can also pass the email object additional information using the setData and addData methods.


<h1>Hi $Member.FirstName</h1>
<p>You can go to $Link.</p>

The PHP Logic..

$email = SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email::create()
        'Member' => Security::getCurrentUser(),
        'Link'=> $link,

if ($email->send()) {
    //email sent successfully
} else {
    // there may have been 1 or more failures
As we've added a new template file (MyCustomEmail) make sure you clear the Silverstripe CMS cache for your changes to take affect.

Custom plain templates

By default Silverstripe CMS will generate a plain text representation of the email from the HTML body. However if you'd like to specify your own own plaintext version/template you can use $email->setPlainTemplate() to render a custom view of the plain email:

$email = new SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email();

Administrator Emails

You can set the default sender address of emails through the Email.admin_email configuration setting.



To add a display name, set admin_email as follow.

  admin_email: 'Support team'
Remember, setting a from address that doesn't come from your domain (such as the users email) will likely see your email marked as spam. If you want to send from another address think about using the setReplyTo method.

Redirecting Emails

There are several other configuration settings to manipulate the email server.

  • SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email.send_all_emails_to will redirect all emails sent to the given address. All recipients will be removed (including CC and BCC addresses). This is useful for testing and staging servers where you do not wish to send emails out. For debugging the original addresses are added as X-Original-* headers on the email.
  • SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email.cc_all_emails_to and SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email.bcc_all_emails_to will add an additional recipient in the BCC / CC header. These are good for monitoring system-generated correspondence on the live systems.

Configuration of those properties looks like the following:


use SilverStripe\Control\Email\Email;
use SilverStripe\Core\Config\Config;
if(Director::isLive()) {
    Config::modify()->set(Email::class, 'bcc_all_emails_to', "");
} else {
    Config::modify()->set(Email::class, 'send_all_emails_to', "");

Setting custom "Reply To" email address.

For email messages that should have an email address which is replied to that actually differs from the original "from" email, do the following. This is encouraged especially when the domain responsible for sending the message isn't necessarily the same which should be used for return correspondence and should help prevent your message from being marked as spam.

$email = new Email(..);

Setting Custom Headers

For email headers which do not have getters or setters (like setTo(), setFrom()) you can manipulate the underlying Swift_Message that we provide a wrapper for.

$email = new Email(...);
$email->getSwiftMessage()->getHeaders()->addTextHeader('HeaderName', 'HeaderValue');
See this Wikipedia entry for a list of header names.

Disabling Emails

If required, you can also disable email sending entirely. This is useful for testing and staging servers where you do not wish to send emails out.

Name: myemailconfig
  Environment: dev
    class: Swift_NullTransport

SwiftMailer Documentation

For further information on SwiftMailer, consult their docs:

API Documentation