WInmail.dat attachments regardless of sender's format

Posted on 2006-03-31
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
My organization uses exchange 2000 with Outlook 2000 clients. Recently, clients that are not using Outlook are complaining about receiving winmail.dat attachments instead of the attached file. I've checked the sender and sender is already using plain text. This is something new that is happening and the only change has been an upgrade from BES 3.6 to BES 4.0. Any thoughts?
Question by:kilstock
    1 Comment
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution

    Outlook is a rather powerful email client program with a number of features that look very attractive. Most notably, Outlook allows users to send email in a variety of formats: plain text, Rich Text, HTML formatting, formatted as a Microsoft Word document.  It's these formatting options that cause the problems.

    When an Outlook user composes and sends a message using either Rich Text Format or HTML Format, Outlook automagically generates a file, winmail.dat, and attaches it to the end of the message. winmail.dat contains formatting information, in a human-unreadable form, that Outlook will use on the receiving end to display this email message correctly. Unfortunately, Outlook is the ONLY email client program that can use this information! Netscape Messenger, Eudora*, and other email client programs don't understand this information.

    The Solutions
    If you are receiving these winmail.dat files

    One solution to the problem is to visit and download the WMDecode program found there (look about halfway down the page). This will at least allow you to decode the winmail.dat files and extract any useful attachments from them.

    Other than this, there's not much you can do on your end to fix the problem, since it's not your email program generating the problem. If you just don't want to deal with the problem, the other approach is to reply to the individual who sent you the offending email and ask that they re-send the message, with the attached files, as a plain text message, not in Rich Text Format or HTML. If they don't know how to do this, you can, of course, refer them to this document!

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