Outlook 2010 Attachment Issue

BowditchDewey used Ask the Experts™
We are experiencing an issue where someone will send out an email containing attachments from another email that they did not attach.  It appears that they have 2 draft emails open and somehow attachments from one document are being attached to the other open draft without the user doing this.  We have confirmed it is not our DMS.  Has anyone seen this?
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Chris RaisinRetired Senior Systems Analyst/Programmer

No, never seen it!

Is that a complete answer to your question and I get the points?     LOL  :-)

Sorry, just saying that with tongue in cheek. :-)

It is better to always ask for someone to supply a solution rather than just ask if they have seen it  

Now back to solving your problem....
Without experiencing it, it is very difficult to surmise the reason.

A test for a possible solution I would think would be to first perform a
"Save attachments" from the source email, saving the attachment(s) to your PC drive before you create the new email. You would then attach those daved file(s) from the PC drive rather than from the source email.

If you have two emails open at the same time (as drafts even) then copying attachments from one email to the other will simply create a reference to the other email item rather than a direct copy. This may be causing the problem ( although I cannot clearly ascertain your exact situation).

Saving the attachment first (which you can later delete after the new email has been sent) should solve the problem.  

It is best to save the files to a folder such as "C:\Temp" if you wish to later delete them.
If you do forget to delete the saved attachment(s), later users of the PC do not worry much about deleting files in  a "Temp" folder.

Just a couple of ideas.  :-)


Sorry about that.  I thought I had added "if so, any thoughts on a solution?".

I am the only one who copies attachments from email to email, rather than saving them into our DMS, then attaching.  

This has happened to two other users as well, who I know for a fact did not copy and paste.  All they did was have two email drafts open, both with attachments, and both being forwards.  Somehow attachments from one draft are attached to the other.  Luckily the attachments are not of a confidential nature and only appear to be on internal emails.
Chris RaisinRetired Senior Systems Analyst/Programmer

A quick solution, without working out why it is happening, is to only perform your action when ONE email is currently in the "Draft" folder.

But looking deeper, perhaps the following link MAY have some relationship:

A google search on "Duplicated Attachemnts" finds a lot on INWARD email (and some outward) but usually is describing duplicated attachments ion the SAME email (not seperate ones).

Another method might be to perform a "repair" form your Windows installation disk in case your Outlook is corrupted (I doubt this though).

Looking forward to your investgation.  :-)
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I've never heard of this happening either (and I've been working with Outlook/Exchange practically since they were invented!). But of course every new version introduces new "features."

Do you have an 3rd party plug-ins (like metadata stripping software, antivirus software, etc.) being used with Outlook? If so, one thing to try would be to disable those plugins and see if the problem still exists. Of course the obvious interim workaround would be to tell these users to make sure that they only have one draft email open while adding the attachments.

Have you actually seen the attachments appear in both emails before sending, or are the users discovering this after the fact?


Yes it very strange, and I have not seen or heard of it before.  I have tried updating the pcs so they have the most recent updates, as well as running multiple office repairs.  We do have a lot of add-ins.  Last count was 18-20 in total, including symantec evault, shoretel conferencing, dms integration, iscrub for metadata, pdf addins, etc.  I have tried disabling add-ins as well, but it happens so sporadically that there is no pattern.  

I have not seen the attachments appear.  I have been on the receiving end of both of the users who this has happened to, so we are discovering after the fact.
Chris RaisinRetired Senior Systems Analyst/Programmer

Maybe their erxplanation of what is happening is not fully understood. They will have to suypply a "step by step" action list which leads to the duplication, supplying the attachments and the emails if available. (Of course if they are confidential then some "dummy" emails and attachments should be used.

If they can supply those then perhaps, along with their step by step actyion list, we can find the source of the error.

The add-ins areprobably not an issue. I too have over 25 add-ins and have never had this problem of duplicated attachments on different outward emails.

While we await any contribution from those having the problem, I will "muck around" to see if I can replicate the problem. Who knows....something magical may raise its ugly head? LOL



Some more strange behavior which I believe is related to the original problem we are having.  Yesterday I was copying vcards from my contacts folder into a new message to forward to someone.  I copy and pasted the vcards using ctrl c / ctrl v.  They were successfully attached to the draft.  I went back to some emails that I had open and it appears some of the vcards attached to those two emails as well.  The emails were not in draft mode.  They were the original emails.  It showed the vcards attached in the new window as well as the reading pane. If I chose to forward the email the vcards would be attached.  If I tried to close the email it would ask if I wanted to save changes.  If I choose no, the email reverts back to its original state without attachments, in both the new window, and reading pane.  I assume something similar is happening with our users, where they have open emails, attach something from our DMS to a draft, and the attachments somehow gets attached to another open email, which is then forwarded out.
What versions of Windows and Outlook are you using?


Windows 7 and outlook 2010.

My question is also what process could change an original email to be editable.  I know you can choose other actions, edit, then paste an attachment in etc, so this is somehow happening without user intervention.
Sounds to me like a temp file issue. I would run something like CCleaner to tidy up your temp files. I have seen similar problems with fax attachements that had a generic attachment name such as fax.tif  as the user opened them outlook saved a temp file fax1.tif fax2.tif etc but after a while could sort it self out and would show the incorrect tif when opened.

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