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gbmcneil

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Why does Outlook 2003 on Vista display unrendered email?

Outlook 2003 on Vista / Windows 7 displays unrendered email messages. Does anyone know why?
Avatar of Vanguard_LH
Vanguard_LH
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Because the leading portion of the HTML document doesn't comply with HTML standards.  Likely it got corrupted.  Do you have your anti-virus program superfluously interrogating your e-mail traffic?  If so, disable its e-mail scanner.  It offer no additional protection over the on-access (realtime) scanner and the AV interception and interrogation of e-mail content is known to sometimes corrupt the content of the e-mail.
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gbmcneil

ASKER

The problem is with all documents. This problem has apparently been around for years when someone upgrades to Vista or Windows 7. I have never found a solution, however.

Thanks for your response.
Avatar of David Lee
Hi, gbmcneil.

Look at the top of an open Outlook message window.  Does it say HTML or plain text?
I take it all back. The problem seems to be from one particular sender. An example of the jibberish I see iis in the code block section below:
Received: via dmail-2010.19 for +INBOX; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:50 -0600 (CST)
Received: from rs44.luxsci.com ([10.225.3.213])
	by rs73.luxsci.com (8.13.8/8.13.8) with ESMTP id oBNJOoJj016768
	for <user-9758@rs73.luxsci.com>; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:50 -0600
Received: from rs44.luxsci.com (localhost [127.0.0.1])
	by rs44.luxsci.com (8.13.1/8.13.7) with ESMTP id oBNJOoXw032314
	for <user-9758@rs73.luxsci.com>; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:50 -0600
Received: (from mail@localhost)
	by rs44.luxsci.com (8.13.1/8.13.7/Submit) id oBNJOoNh032303
	for user-9758@rs73.luxsci.com; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:50 -0600
Return-Path: <wharf@pmac.com>
Received: from p02c11m104.mxlogic.net (mxl144v245.mxlogic.net [208.65.144.245])
	by rs44.luxsci.com (8.13.1/8.13.7) with ESMTP id oBNJOnwd032269
	(version=TLSv1/SSLv3 cipher=DHE-RSA-AES256-SHA bits=256 verify=NOT)
	for <gbbm@gormcneil.com>; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:49 -0600
Received: from unknown [65.61.166.79] (EHLO rs45.luxsci.com)
	by p02c11m104.mxlogic.net(mxl_mta-6.8.0-0) over TLS secured channel
	with ESMTP id ff1a31d4.0.687880.00-2332.868474.p02c11m104.mxlogic.net (envelope-from <wharf@pmac.com>);
	Thu, 23 Dec 2010 12:24:48 -0700 (MST)
Received: from asmtpout030.mac.com (asmtpout030.mac.com [17.148.16.105])
	by rs45.luxsci.com (8.13.1/8.13.7) with ESMTP id oBNJOljA011193
	for <gormcneil@luxsci.net>; Thu, 23 Dec 2010 13:24:47 -0600
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: multipart/alternative;
 boundary="Boundary_(ID_YyudSbqp8mZ2j4B/UQn6ig)"
Received: from [10.0.1.3] (fl-74-4-112-123.dhcp.embarqhsd.net [74.4.112.123])  by asmtp030.mac.com  (Sun Java(tm) System Messaging Server 6.3-8.01 (built Dec 16 2008; 32bit))  with ESMTPA id <0LDW00A3BB87RR70@asmtp030.mac.com> for gormcneil@luxsci.net;  Thu, 23 Dec 2010 11:24:17 -0800 (PST)
X-Proofpoint-Spam-Details: rule=notspam policy=default score=0 spamscore=0  ipscore=0 suspectscore=0 phishscore=0 bulkscore=2 adultscore=0 classifier=spam  adjust=0 reason=mlx engine=6.0.2-1010190000 definitions=main-1012230083
X-Proofpoint-Virus-Version: vendor=fsecure  engine=2.50.10432:5.2.15,1.0.148,0.0.0000
 definitions=2010-12-23_09:2010-12-23,2010-12-23,1970-01-01 signatures=0
From: Thomas Fallia <wharf@pmac.com>
Date: Thu, 23 Dec 2010 14:24:07 -0500
Subject: Late Night Political Humor
References: <001636e1e9e9d1c0f8049815adbd@google.com>
To: Undisclosed-recipients: <>;
Message-id: <6ADD6860-003C-440C-A9A9-9905C55D39F2@mac.com>
X-Mailer: Apple Mail (2.1082)
X-Spam: [F=0.1428571429; B=0.500(0); spf=0.500; STSI=0.500(-11); STSM=0.400(-11); CM=0.500; MH=0.500(2010122325); S=0.200(2010121501); SC=none]
X-MAIL-FROM: <wharf@pmac.com>
X-SOURCE-IP: [65.61.166.79]
X-AnalysisOut: [v=1.0 c=1 a=BLceEmwcHowA:10 a=j72sEpO78R8nzkB5VXpCQA==:17 ]
X-AnalysisOut: [a=skWjf6pQs1-PNRjso5gA:9 a=SxPwihXbaE-cPA84gAr-wh-YseMA:4 ]
X-AnalysisOut: [a=pILNOxqGKmIA:10 a=sh6PArqQtYdngLzxv5aEQJAsMbE=:19 a=QWnS]
X-AnalysisOut: [Nb0A21pDhILt:21 a=iXLfVOuDmmqRRcNK:21 a=nr-h81c4sm2wIG1_Xc]
X-AnalysisOut: [sA:7 a=_4Z5W0iMe4M9cMQlAhhS5jCxAbIA:4]
X-Lux-Processed-For: <gbbm@gormcneil.com>
X-Lux-Ruleset: #9758 on rs44.luxsci.com
X-Lux-Envelope-Recipient: <gbbm@gormcneil.com>
X-Lux-Rule: Deliver
X-Lux-Delivered-To: "INBOX"


--Boundary_(ID_YyudSbqp8mZ2j4B/UQn6ig)
Content-type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252
Content-transfer-encoding: quoted-printable



> =93A new survey finds that although his approval ratings are low, =
President Obama is still ahead of the most prominent Republicans. Have = you seen his tax plan? He is the most prominent Republican.=94 =96 Jay = Leno
>=20
> =93The Obamas had their dog, Bo, sign their Christmas card this year =
with a paw print. But Bo only agreed to do it after Obama agreed to = extend the Bush-era treats policy.=94 =96 Jimmy Fallon
>=20
> =93Apparently, a fourth panel of the Metrodome=92s roof collapsed last 
>=
night, sending more snow crashing onto the field. The last time I saw = something cave in so often, he was giving a press conference at the = White House.=94 =96 Jimmy Fallon
>=20
> =93A group of TSA agents has formed a choir to entertain travelers as 
>=
they go through security. It=92s not helping that the only song they = sing is Journey=92s =91Loving, Touching, Squeezing.=92=94 =96 Conan = O=92Brien
>=20
> =93Several TSA officers have formed a holiday choir at the Los Angeles 
>=
International Airport. Which, of course, answers the question: How can = going through airport security possibly get any worse?=94 =96 Jimmy = Fallon
>=20
> =93WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange was granted bail by a London court. 
>=
At a press conference, Assange said he will not be silenced, and then = told everyone who their secret Santa is.=94 =96 Conan O=92Brien
>=20
> =93Julian Assange was released from custody. It=92s a good thing, =
because he was behind on his holiday leaking.=94 =96 David Letterman
>=20
> =93This Christmas season, the post office will handle 10 billion =
packages. They won=92t deliver them, they=92ll just handle them.=94 =96 = David Letterman
>=20
> =93Al-Qaida is planning Christmas attacks in the U.S. and Europe. The 
>=
U.S. government sprang into action and told al-Qaida, =91Hey, you cannot = call them Christmas attacks, you have to call them holiday attacks.=92=94 =
=96 Jay Leno
>=20
> =93In Abu Dhabi, there=92s an $11 million Christmas tree. The prime =
minister of Abu Dhabi said he hoped the tree would be a symbol that Abu = Dhabi has a lot more money than us. And that we=92re paying far too much = for gas.=94 =96 Jimmy Kimmel
>=20
> =93The House has voted to repeal the =91don=92t ask, don=92t tell=92 =
policy. Nancy Pelosi said, =91Now=92s the time to act,=92 meaning before = Democrats lose their majority in a couple of weeks. Which raises the =
question: Why didn=92t they act the last four years when they had the =
majority?=94 =96 Jay Leno
>=20
> =93The most annoying word of the year is =91whatever.=92 As always, =
No. 2 is =91Limbaugh.=92=94 =96 David Letterman
>=20
> =93According to a new Rasmussen poll, only 23 percent say America is =
heading in the right direction. In Mexico, it=92s different. There, 77 = percent say the right direction is heading to America.=94 =96 Jay Leno
>=20


--Boundary_(ID_YyudSbqp8mZ2j4B/UQn6ig)
Content-type: text/html; charset=windows-1252
Content-transfer-encoding: quoted-printable

<html><head></head><body style=3D"word-wrap: break-word; =
-webkit-nbsp-mode: space; -webkit-line-break: after-white-space; = "><br><div><br><blockquote type=3D"cite"><span class=3D"Apple-style-span" =
style=3D"border-collapse: separate; font-family: 'Apple LiGothic'; =
font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; font-weight: normal; =
letter-spacing: normal; line-height: normal; orphans: 2; text-indent: = 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 2; word-spacing: = 0px; -webkit-border-horizontal-spacing: 0px; =
-webkit-border-vertical-spacing: 0px; =
-webkit-text-decorations-in-effect: none; -webkit-text-size-adjust: = auto; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; font-size: medium; "><span = class=3D"Apple-style-span" style=3D"font-family: Georgia, Helvetica, = Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 18px; "><table = id=3D"itemcontentlist" style=3D"position: static; z-index: auto; = "><tbody><tr><td style=3D"margin-bottom: 0px; line-height: 1.4em; "><div =
style=3D"margin-top: 0px; margin-right: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; =
margin-left: 0px; font-family: Georgia, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; =
line-height: 18px; font-size: 13px; color: rgb(0, 0, 0); "><p>=93A new = survey finds that although his approval ratings are low, President Obama = is still ahead of the most prominent Republicans. Have you seen his tax = plan? He<span = class=3D"Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span><em>is</em><span = class=3D"Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span>the most prominent =
Republican.=94 =96 Jay Leno</p><p>=93The Obamas had their dog, Bo, sign = their Christmas card this year with a paw print. But Bo only agreed to = do it after Obama agreed to extend the Bush-era treats policy.=94 =96 = Jimmy Fallon</p><p>=93Apparently, a fourth panel of the Metrodome=92s = roof collapsed last night, sending more snow crashing onto the field. = The last time I saw something cave in so often, he was giving a press = conference at the White House.=94 =96 Jimmy Fallon</p><p>=93A group of = TSA agents has formed a choir to entertain travelers as they go through = security. It=92s not helping that the only song they sing is Journey=92s = =91Loving, Touching, Squeezing.=92=94 =96 Conan O=92Brien</p><p>=93Several=  TSA officers have formed a holiday choir at the Los Angeles = International Airport. Which, of course, answers the question: How can = going through airport security possibly get any worse?=94 =96 Jimmy = Fallon</p><p>=93WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange was granted bail by a = London court. At a press conference, Assange said he will not be = silenced, and then told everyone who their secret Santa is.=94 =96 Conan = O=92Brien</p><p>=93Julian Assange was released from custody. It=92s a = good thing, because he was behind on his holiday leaking.=94 =96 David = Letterman</p><p>=93This Christmas season, the post office will handle 10 = billion packages. They won=92t deliver them, they=92ll just handle =
them.=94 =96 David Letterman</p><p>=93Al-Qaida is planning Christmas = attacks in the U.S. and Europe. The U.S. government sprang into action = and told al-Qaida, =91Hey, you cannot call them Christmas attacks, you = have to call them holiday attacks.=92=94 =96 Jay Leno</p><p>=93In Abu = Dhabi, there=92s an $11 million Christmas tree. The prime minister of = Abu Dhabi said he hoped the tree would be a symbol that Abu Dhabi has a = lot more money than us. And that we=92re paying far too much for gas.=94 =
=96 Jimmy Kimmel</p><p>=93The House has voted to repeal the =91don=92t = ask, don=92t tell=92 policy. Nancy Pelosi said, =91Now=92s the time to =
act,=92 meaning before Democrats lose their majority in a couple of = weeks. Which raises the question: Why didn=92t they act the last four = years when they had the majority?=94 =96 Jay Leno</p><p>=93The most = annoying word of the year is =91whatever.=92 As always, No. 2 is =
=91Limbaugh.=92=94 =96 David Letterman</p><p>=93According to a new = Rasmussen poll, only 23 percent say America is heading in the right = direction. In Mexico, it=92s different. There, 77 percent say the right = direction is heading to America.=94 =96 Jay = Leno</p></div></td></tr></tbody></table></span></span></blockquote></div><=
br></body></html>=

--Boundary_(ID_YyudSbqp8mZ2j4B/UQn6ig)--

Open in new window

On a quick scan, I only see the 2 parts for the text/plain and text/HTML sections.  Any HTML formatted e-mail should contain both these sections.  Why?  Because recipients may not be using e-mail clients that can render HTML coded messages or they configured their e-mail clients to display the e-mail in plain text format only.  If the recipient can't or doesn't want to view e-mails as HTML and only a plain text, the text/plain section gives them that version.

Note that BOTH of the text/plain and text/HTML section are *text* content.  HTML is just text with tags.  No binary content.  I saw no MIME parts which would be needed to encode into a long text string (since ALL e-mail gets sent as text) for any embedded image or binary content.  So this test message had no embedded images.  I didn't see any linked images, either.  In fact, this appears to be one of those double-sized e-mails that only needed to use plain text to send the message.  There is nothing of HTML required for it.  So the sender could have sent this message as text only (with no HTML part).  HTML wasn't required for it at all and merely doubled the size of the e-mail by adding duplicate text-only content.  It does specify using the Apple LiGothic font but that doesn't change that the message was nothing but text (no images).  

Alas, once Outlook parses a newly received e-mail into various records inside its .pst database file, you don't have the original or true e-mail source to review.  In Outlook, you don't get exactly the same content as the SMTP servers bounced around to send and receive an e-mail.  You can see the true raw source with other e-mails client, just not with Outlook.  So was the above what you saw using Outlook or by using a different e-mail client or using raw-source view in the webmail client for your e-mail account?

That the Apple LiGothic font specified was something from Apple, I have to wonder if this sender was using a Mac on which Office was used to compose an HTML formatted e-mail.  If so, as stated, there are problems receiving e-mails from users of Office for Mac (that has not been updated).  Other than AV programs corrupting the content of e-mails, the other source that I've seen are e-mails sent by Mac+Office users.
Since the messages all come from a single sender it seems reasonable to conclude that the problem is on their end and not on your end.
Thank you both for your comments.

The issue is that on an older computer used for backups, there is no problem. That is, running Outlook 2003 on Windows XP I have no problem receiving emails from this one particular sender. However, on a brand new Sony laptop running Outlook 2003 on Windows 7, messages don't seem to be rendered from this one particular sender. I get this raw unrendered stuff.

So, I am not cheap. I have ordered a copy of Outlook 2010 to load on Windows 7, thinking that the problem will go away. But, I just find it strange and wonder if there is a setting on Outlook 2003 (on the new Sony) that would eliminate the problem.
Is Outlook on the Sony configured to use Outlook or Word as the email editor?
Thanks for your persistence.

Under Options - Mail Format - Message Format,both the old desktop running XP and the new Sony laptop running Windows 7 are setup identically. That is, both say "Compose message in HTML" and "Use Microsoft Office Word 2003 to edit e-mail messages".

Also, both computers have Office 2003 (with Word 2003) installed. I have yet to install a more recent version of Office or Outlook on either computer.

Furthermore, I do not recall making any changes to the default installation of Outlook 2003 on either machine.

Got ya stumpted, euh?

Purely as a test, how about changing the Sony to use Outlook as the editor and see what happens?

Yeah, a bit stumped.  
Before we do that BlueDevilFan, there maybe another factor at play here.

My old desktop running XP is also still running IE 6.0.3790, whereas the new laptop with Windows 7 is running IE 8.0.7600.

Wouldn't IE be doing the rendering of the HTML?  Trouble is, you'd think that a more recent version of IE would be advanced enough to deal with all sorts of messages composed on a MAC. The opposite seems to be the case here. The "stone age" version of IE seems to be running fine. It's the "latest and greatest" version of IE that's failing.

But, then, maybe there is some sort of setting on IE 8.0 on the Sony that is confusing good old, reliable Outlook 2003?  Now, that's a sea of switches that I've never been able to figure out, and I don't think even Microsoft knows what all those settings do.
I don't think it's a rendering problem.  The message doesn't appear to be seen as being in HTML format, which results in no rendering taking place at all.  Word as the editor is notorious for causing odd problems.  That's why I'd lie to see what happens when you change the editor to use Outlook instead of Word.  If that doesn't fix the problem, then you can try upgrading IE to v8 and see what happens.
Sorry. But, what exactly would you have me change?

I can uncheck the box to "Use Microsoft Office Word 2003 to edit email messages" in Tools- Options - Mail Format - Message Format. Will that make the Sony use Outlook as the editor?
Negative on the uncheck of Office Word 2003, BlueDevilFan.

The unrendered garbage is still displayed.
"I can uncheck the box to "Use Microsoft Office Word 2003 to edit email messages" in Tools- Options - Mail Format - Message Format. Will that make the Sony use Outlook as the editor? "

Yes.  Up until Outlook 2007 you have the choice of using Word or Outlook as the message editor.  With Outlook 2007 and later Word is the only editor.

-----

"The unrendered garbage is still displayed."

Ok.  That eliminates Word as the cause.  That brings me back to an earlier question I asked.  With the problem message open, what do you see at the top of the message window: HTML or plain text?  For example, if the message subject is "Annual Report" do you see

    Annual Report - Message (HTML)

or

    Annual Report - Message (Plain Text)
If I were to upgrade IE 6.0 to IE 8.0 I'd be doing that on the old desktop which is displaying every message just fine. So, I don't think that would be advised.

How about if I run Office 2003 SP3 (which I think contains the last upgrade / fixes for Word 2003)? I think I ran that already, but I can re-run it just to make sure.

Also, maybe there is a setting in the Tools - Options dialog box of Word 2003 that is different?

 

All the email that I receive from this one individual is showing -'

message title - Message(Plain Text)

at the top of the Outlook 2003 dialog box when I click on the message.



There is more to it, however.

If I go to the old desktop and bring up the same email message in Outlook 2003 on Windows XP, it says -

message title - Message(HTML)
I hope you weren't counting on picking up a fast 500 points which would put you over the top, and qualify you for an all-expense-paid trip to Aruba.

"I hope you weren't counting on picking up a fast 500 points which would put you over the top, and qualify you for an all-expense-paid trip to Aruba."

*laughing*  Nope. Unfortunately I need way more than 500 points to qualify for the Aruba trip.

-----

"All the email that I receive from this one individual is showing -'
message title - Message(Plain Text)"

"If I go to the old desktop and bring up the same email message in Outlook 2003 on Windows XP, it says -
message title - Message(HTML)"

That's what I thought.  On the former system the messages aren't being seen as being in HTML format.  Do other messages come through in HTML format on that system?
Okay. I did some more snooping around and here is what I found.

There is a second sender who consistently sends me email that isn't rendered as HTML on the Sony (the laptop running Outlook 2003 on Windows 7). The message is a really an idiot level thing which says that data for a stock market application I use is ready. You wouldn't think HTML would be required to layout the text. The message just says "Today's PatternScans list is now available for viewing".

Also, I found one email message from the primary offender which did come thru as HTML. Probably 98% of his email comes thru as unrendered HTML. But, here is this one email message that is rendered HTML. It's a video that appears when you open the email message. It is not a separate attachment. There would appear to be no way you mistake this content for "Plain Texr".

Maybe Outlook 2003 is relying on a function found in a DLL that is replaced by Windows 7.

Also, I think my persistence with Outlook 2003 is due to the fact that I never really had a problem with the program until now. Furthermore, I've heard that Outlook 2010 is buggy. I certainly don't need that.



With the exception of these two senders, the email I receive is rendered HTML. Today I got about 40 email messages. Again, no problem if I exclude these two senders.
BlueDevilFan -

I did a search on the web and here is what I came up with. This was back in January 2008. If this were a bug, you would have thought Microsoft would fix it.

*****

Well, then, you're not receiving your messages in plain text, as you claim,
but as raw, unrendered HTML. Not the same thing.

There is an issue with Outlook 2003 on Vista that if you receive an HTML
message via Bcc, you will see the raw, unrendered HTML. Microsoft is trying
to typify the problem. If you could forward to me a copy of one of these
messages and a .msg attachment, I can pass it on to a Microsoft contact I
have. Include, if you will, a statement of whether or not you've configured
Otlook to use Word as the message reader.
--
Brian Tillman [MVP-Outlook]


Sounds like I am the only guy in the Universe running Outlook 2003 on Windows 7 or Vista.
This is the reason I prefer to remain with Outlook 2003 on Windows 7. This info is from Amazon.Com page devoted to Outlook 2007.

*****

Potential buyers need to know--and Microsoft will NOT tell them--that Office 2007 products, including Outlook, do not exist side-by-side happily with older versions. For example, if you upgrade one Office product, such as Outlook, everytime you start an older Office program, such as Word 2003, it will "reinstall" itself. Then, when you start Outlook 2007, it will "reinstall" itself, etc. Furthermore, if you install an Office 2007 suite that does not include Outlook, it will be impossible to install an older version of Outlook.
ASKER CERTIFIED SOLUTION
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David Lee
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Hello BlueDevilFan -

You must be masochistic, but thanks for the emotional support.

My new copy of Outlook 2010 arrived yesterday, but I haven't done anything with it. I keep hoping for a miracle solution because I have this suspicion that I'm going to have more problems if I install it - expecting to keep the rest of Office 2003.

Yes. I believe that I am on BCC mailing lists on the computers of the two offending senders. Nothing much I can do about that other than upgrade.The executioner cometh.
As a test you could ask one of the senders to send you a message where you are on the To or CC line to see if it makes a difference.
Hi BlueDevilFan -

Thanks for your input. But, I've thrown in the sponge and upgraded to Outlook 2010. I should say that I am pleasantly pleased with it. At present, I run the rest of the Office 2003 apps - like Excel and Word on Windows 7. That makes my happy because I really like those two programs.
Ok.  Cheers!