Outlook 2003 hangs reply or forward

Hello all,

My users are using outlook 2003 and using word as the html editor.  I have one particular user that when opening a html email from one particular user to reply or forward her outlook hangs and word never opens.  If I change the editor to not be Word then things are fine.  However, they need to use word because of multilanguage spell checking.

I think the cause is that the particular user that is sending the email has the hotbar banner at the bottom of the email.  Before replying I get the outlook must download content warning.  If you say yes...then word hangs.

My suspicion is that I have somehow with spybot or spywareblaster etc...prevented hotbar from downloading and thus messing up the email download.

I really dont want hotbar downloading....but they also need to be able to reply.  Ideally I would like for them to be able to reply without the outlook having to download the additional content.  

I am not really sure the best course of action...

Hopefully someone has a good solution....


Who is Participating?
PAQed with points refunded (250)

Community Support Moderator
Greetings, pattersonr !

1. Hotbar is considered spyware.  Here is how to remove it.

2. Check for other trojans with Ewido

3. If still no joy, download HijackThis


Run the program and you will find many entries. Most are OK. Post the log at http://www.hijackthis.de/ and click Analyse, Save.  Post a link to the saved list here.

Best wishes!
Check if you have the latest service pack for office 2003 installed. There is upto service pack 2. If not installed, install it and try.
Ultimate Tool Kit for Technology Solution Provider

Broken down into practical pointers and step-by-step instructions, the IT Service Excellence Tool Kit delivers expert advice for technology solution providers. Get your free copy now.

pattersonrAuthor Commented:

Maybe I didnt explain things correctly....
This PC does not have hotbar installed...
They have a email contact that sending messages with hotbar embedded in the email....
When they get ready to reply oulook asks to download content from the hotbar server....Obviously I really dont want that...
The two products that I use to block spyware....Spyware blaster and spybot search and destroy.....I think are immunizing the PC by blocking downloads from known spyware destinattions....(which is great)...

However, it seems as though becuase the blocker are preventing the downloads that it is causing outlook to hang.
We are running sp2.  

By the way...(I have tried removing the frmchache.dat files, and normal.dot, etc to see if that would fix things.)  

Ideally I would like for outlook to not try to download the content of the html when replying....becuase I really dont want to allow the hotbar images in the email anyway....

Hopefully you will have some ideas...


Thank you for the clarification.  Setting to read email only in Plain Text format should stop the HTML email from downloading.

    * Select Tools | Options... from the menu in Outlook.
    * Make sure the Preferences tab is selected.
    * Click E-mail Options....
    * Make sure Read all standard mail in plain text and Read all digitally singed mail in plain text are checked.
    * Click OK.
    * Click OK again.

pattersonrAuthor Commented:

The reading email isnt the problem....I think because it is using the outlook viewer and not attempting to download content at that time...
The replying or forwarding is the issue...becusae they are replying as html and using word to reply.  So when they choose to reply it tries to start word and then dies,....

Unfortunately, I would love to just switch them to plain text but....they would like to be able to continue to use the whole signature multiple font colors...blah blah blah thing.....

In my opinion rtf isnt a great idea since it plays havok with some email clients....

I could also not make word the editor for replies even with using html...and that fixes the problem....EXCEPT
They using both english and spanish...and without word as the editor outlook will not spell check multiple languages....

I do realize that I could solve this problem a couple ways by eliminating some functionality that they are currently using....
But I am really trying to figure out how to solve this one without having to take functionality from them....

THanks for the help so far...:)

pattersonrAuthor Commented:
I resolved this one by going into spywareblaster and spybot search and destry and removing the restriction to block hotbar.com
I left the restriction to block the activex install so that they would not receive the malware....
THis fixed the word problem....

Pattersonr, glad you found a workaround for the Hotbar issue.  Removing the restriction on Hotbar is a little scary.  Hotmail is spyware.
pattersonrAuthor Commented:

Yes it is spyware...but I think that I have only allowed them to go to hotbar.com (the website)

They still should not be able to install the activex control which is the actual problem....

So hopefully it shouldnt be a big deal
pattersonrAuthor Commented:

Yes it is spyware...but I think that I have only allowed them to go to hotbar.com (the website)

They still should not be able to install the activex control which is the actual problem....

So hopefully it shouldnt be a big deal
Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.