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Decoding File Enclosures from AOL

SangHYi asked
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-27
I seem to be having problems decoding attached files e-mailed to me from an AOL account to my non-AOL account (I'm using Quick-Mail with Internet gateway).  The files come over as "file.ext."  I tried using "YA-base64" to decode the files on my mac.  the decoding seems to go well - even creating new documents like word, *.sit,etc., but these files are empty.  No data!  anyone have a clue?  AOL tech support was no help, saying that word docs don't go through well using mime, which sounds preposterous.  Anyone have the answer (and don't say have it sent as a text file!)?
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Edited text of question

Sounds like the YA64 program isn't closing the file.  Maybe because the original file wasn't finished downloading or closed all the way?  If you check the size on the original AOL file does it have zero size, or does it really take up space?


for irac:  the aol file seems to take up space.  it's just when i run it through the decoder, it comes up as nothing.  actually, a few of the "decoded" word files contained a lot of ascii junk, as if nothing was decoded.  Perhaps its the YAbase 64 program I'm using?

Have you tried opening the downloaded file using Stuffit Expander?

Luckely I'm an AOL user (Using a pc) open up drag the file over simpletext and it should read it. or rename the file "file.txt"


for Hackman:  the thing is, I should be able to read the enclosures as word docs.  I shouldn't have to convert it to a text file, or have the sender send the files as text. what method should i be using to decrypt the attached files from aol users?


perhaps this is an impossible question to answer.  i have increased the point value to 200, and will wait another week for an answer.  after that, i'm going to harass the aol techs again.



Hmmm-  if you open the original AOL file with a text editor like BBEDIT does it have mail headers at the top?   If it does they might be confusing the Base 64 decoder program.  I recently had this problem with a file, and I had to take off the mail headers to get it to work.


I'm surprised no one was able to answer this very well.  I will attempt.  AOL as other ISP's are what you call MIME compliant with their SMTP gateway.  You, or your non-AOL account may not support MIME.  Basically email comes across the internet in a 7-bit format normally or non-mime.  MIME compliant email gateways allow email to come accross in 8-bit format and allow the original file format the attachment was created in come through.  You will need to check to see if your non-AOL account supports MIME.  If not, you should go to shareware.com and accuire UUDECODE and UUENCODE for compressing and decompressing your files.  If this works let these guys know so I can get the points:-)
Word files dont carry well attached,
try stuffing all the files, or use encryption.
There's a new version of UUundo-1.0.sit.hqx available from www.shareware.com that should unpick the files for you. Download it and drag your attachments on to it.


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scottr - you suggested an answer that should have led to the same result. If you like, get into contact with me:



PS I answered this question 'cause I also knew the answer and it was sitting there for a month - I figured maybe the original sender didn't know the procedure and needed more help.


my apologies, also.  i sort of stopped checking here to harrass aol.  and as time passed, i forgot about the problem, until this week...  
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