Outlook 2003 mail stuck in outbox due to sent date being removed

Posted on 2004-09-27
Last Modified: 2012-06-22
I'm running Outlook 2003 (sp1). I am not connected to an Exchange server but am using a Go Daddy e-mail account with an SMTP server provided by Starfieldtech. When sending messages, if groups are expanded in Outbox and the message is visible, the Sent Date is stripped out and the message will not send. I have searched several resources to confirm a bug and/or find a solution. Has anyone else experienced this problem and found a solution (other than collapsing all groups in Outbox)?
Question by:astoffer
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

ID: 12166120
Personally i have not worked on OL 2003  but check some of these

a) Did this issue start suddenly or it has been since you have set up the account

b) Make sure SP1 is the latest updates for OL 2003. If the issue started after updating, check without update

c) Does the message get stuck if the number of items in the group is less ?

d) Have you tried to recreate the email account setup there as that solves issues like this sometimes

e) Try to remove unwanted messages from your sent items , deleted items folder to see if that helps

f) Temporarily disable any firewall running in the machine to check if that would help
LVL 49

Expert Comment

ID: 12166129
Try removing the stuck message and create it again to see if that helps

Does it matter whether you send any attachment or not ..

Does it happen without groups also.. I am not sure what you meant by collapsing the group .
You may check this if it can give some light on the issue

OL2000: How to Troubleshoot Mail Stuck in the Outbox;en-us;195922


Author Comment

ID: 12166233
Updated problem characteristics.

When the message appears in the Outbox and receives the focus (i.e. is highlighted), the message information is stripped of italicized text and its sent date. If I'm watching, I can sometimes pick up the message changing to non-italics and no sent date. This appears to prevent the message from sending. If messages in the Outbox are grouped by a header field (but collapsed) and/or there is an old "stuck" message in the Outbox a new message will usually send OK when I execute a send/receive. The grouping and old message "fix" seems to be related to the new message not receiving the focus when switching to the Outbox. I do not have any reader panes turned on.

It appears that a workaround is to execute the send and avoid opening the Outbox folder. Based on testing, I don't believe that attachments are causing the problem.

I have tried shutting down NAV and recreating the mail accounts. I have also cleaned out other folders. I have found some references to this problem on various sites, but no solution other than to switch e-mail clients and/or try suggestions mentioned here.
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Expert Comment

ID: 12167637
1.) Do you have any plug-ins installed in your Outlook?
2.) Do you have any rules to read the mail before it is sent to perform actions based on specific criteria?
3.) Are you sure the mail is not being sent and just left in the Outbox?

The only reasons that I know of for the message to be "stripped of italicized text" is if the message was opened for reading before hitting the send que or after it is sent and before it is moved into the "Sent Items" folder. If it is opened for reading it will not send until you open it again and click on "Send". If it was already sent and Outlook missed moving it to the "Sent Items" folder then it will not send again

Author Comment

ID: 12292385
Well, still no 100% solution. I did find a similar thread on another forum I've also found references on other sites that seem to elude to this being a problem with Outlook 2003. Had no problems when using a single account on Exchange, but now that I'm using POP/SMTP accounts with two different ISPs, this problem continues to exist.

My workaround that seems to be functional is to leave a dummy message in the Outbox which gets stripped of its sent date and gets stuck. As I compose and send other messages, as long as I don't access the Outbox, the new messages seem to hold their sent date info and send correctly. If I accidentally open the Outbox and a message loses its sent date, opening the message, switching folders and clicking forward to resend is another workaround.

Hopefully this problem will be recognized by MS and confirm the problem. Until then, I hope these workarounds help someone else not suffer my frustration. Thanks for all your input.
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Accepted Solution

modulo earned 0 total points
ID: 12866896
PAQed with points refunded (250)

Community Support Moderator

Expert Comment

ID: 13030183
I've had this same problem - emails stuck in outbox but date gets changed to "none" as soo as the item is previewed, and it won't send.  It seems to have gone away when I removed McAffee anti-virus from my system.  I do know that it scans outgoing emails, so this makes sense.  It might be worth uninstalling your anti-virus software temporarily to see if this solves the problem.

Expert Comment

ID: 13132391
I've had this problem too. Unable to get to the bottom of it but have found a workaround:

1 - Drag the stuck email from the Outbox to the Draft box
2 - Open the email and click Send
3 - The email should drop back into the Outbox
4 - Click Send and Receive and the email should go

My user that had this problem was double clicking the Send & Receive button but am not convinced that was what caused it.

Expert Comment

ID: 14251615
I have this problem to. It drive me nuts because I often have second thoughts about a message and go into the outbox to edit it or add an attachment before sending. The program strips out the date and indicates "none" and I can find no way to send it again. I think Microsoft needs to address this issue.


Expert Comment

ID: 14255262
Definitely - I've now switched my system over to MS Office 2003 Pro with Outlook but have not had the same problem (touch wood). My PC is fully patched up now so whether they have fixed it or not I don't know. Very odd :-(

Expert Comment

ID: 14256179
I found a work-around. I drag the message from the outbox into "drafts", edit it and send it.

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