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Email attachments are arriving as .dat files
Thread poster: Patricia Lane

Patricia Lane  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:28
French to English
+ ...
Mar 20, 2009

Hello all,

I've scoured the Internet trying to understand and solve this to no avail, and hope one of you tech savvy experts can figure it out.

Every time one of my clients sends me an email with an attachment (usually a .doc or .pdf file), I receive a file with a llllllllllllllllllllllllllllooooooooooooooooooooooooooongggggggggggg wacky name, in .dat format.

I *can* open it when I change the extension (hunting and pecking until I pick the right one), but I never have the real file name, which is a big problem when dealing with a complet project and revisions.

To be clear (from what I have read on line), I am NOT receiving a winmail.dat attachment, and yes the body of the email if just fine.

My clients have a variety of IT set ups and I have never encountered this.

I finally was able to find out this client's computer uses Vista (which version, haven't a clue, and that is about all I know). But other clients have Vista too, so...

I am on XP Pro SP3 and use Outlook 2000 (and in any event, same thing happens when they send to my on-line Gmail account...).

Has anyone encountered this? I'd like to be able to provide a solution to my client, and the problem is on their end it seems...

Thanks in advance,

Patricia


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Lutz Molderings  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:28
Member (2007)
German to English
+ ...
forget about the link Mar 20, 2009

sorry, didn't read your post properly

[Edited at 2009-03-20 18:53 GMT]


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 20:28
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Moderator of this forum
Hi Patricia Mar 20, 2009

Could you please specify, if 1) you receive such messages always from one and the same client, and 2) which emailer do you use?

Natalia


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Florence B  Identity Verified
France
Member (2002)
English to French
+ ...
It happened yesterday Mar 20, 2009

It happened yesterday.
I have sent (twice) a .ttx file to a client and both times she received it as a .dat
I tried sending it to myself at the same time, the second time, and I received it as a .ttx - but not her.
No other client ever reported this, I have sent another .ttx today to somebody else without problems.
We finally used another system but found that rather worrying.
I'm sending emails with a Linux system (the sofware is called Evolution), I don't know what she has - but I'm sending her the link to this discussion.

Florence

[Edited at 2009-03-20 19:29 GMT]


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RieM  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:28
English to Japanese
+ ...
If the client is using thunderbird Mar 20, 2009

then, this might help solve the problem..


http://kb.mozillazine.org/Attachments_renamed

Regards,
Rie


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Sergei Leshchinsky  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 21:28
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
It is an Outlook bug... Mar 20, 2009

tool -- http://www.kopf.com.br/winmail/

theory -- http://www.kopf.com.br/winmail/winmail.php

(Winmail.dat files are in fact TNEF attachments (transport neutral encapsulation format) sent by the Microst Outlook, Outlook Express or Microsoft Exchange applications. Users from other e-mail clients (like Thunderbird or Lotus Notes) cannot read them, neither their attachment, as the attachment and winmail.dat file may be combined into a single winmail.dat.)

[Редактировалось 2009-03-20 19:07 GMT]


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Sergei Leshchinsky  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 21:28
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
more links... Mar 20, 2009

http://www.eolsoft.com/freeware/winmail_opener/
http://www.petersen.de/english/tnef2win/

more theory -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transport_Neutral_Encapsulation_Format


Miraсle? Just google...


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Patricia Lane  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:28
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Nope Mar 20, 2009

No Sergei, it is not a winmail.dat issue. That one messes up the body of the email and attaches a file called winmail.dat.

This is not the problem I am having.

To respond to other queries --
I believe my client uses Outlook (which version I do not know), and I am on Outlook 2000. And yes, this is the only client I receive messed up files from!!

Glad to see I am not alone with the problem (misery loves company)!

Patricia


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David Young  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 20:28
Danish to English
Curiouser and curiouser Mar 20, 2009

This is probably no help at all, but I received 3 files attached to an email yesterday; one was a .doc, one a .pdf, and the third had no file type extension, just a name. I didn't notice this at first, but when I saved them to my hard disk, Outlook Express or XP saved the third as a .dat. That is, it was given the .dat by Outlook Express. It was actually a .pdf and opened fine in Acrobat Reader but my client tells me that at her end, it shows in her Sent Box as a .pdf file, so something happened in transit or when I downloaded my mails. It's weird - they weren't particularly large files.
I've never experienced this before - maybe there is something out there on the ether at the moment


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Sergei Leshchinsky  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 21:28
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
save the attached winmail.dat and then convert it Mar 20, 2009

Patricia Lane wrote:
attaches a file called winmail.dat.


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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 20:28
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Moderator of this forum
Sergei Mar 20, 2009

Patricia has clearly specified that it is NOT a winmail.dat issue - please check her posting.

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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 20:28
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Moderator of this forum
Just guessing Mar 20, 2009

Could it be that the filenames contained some diacritics, for example "ç"?

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Gerard de Noord  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:28
Member (2003)
German to Dutch
+ ...
Worth checking Mar 20, 2009

I found this on the Internet:

" ... regarding the attachment on mail, it is happening because you are set to read all mail in plain text. Go to the Tools menu>Options>Read Tab and uncheck that option>apply/OK.
...

Regards Steve.
MS-MVP. MAIL. [DTS]"

I couldn't test this solution. Have you tried to exchange ZIP files with this client? Maybe the ZIP file will get renamed but the contents of the ZIP should stay the same.

Regards,
Gerard

I Just scroled down and also found this:

"If the mail was sent from Outlook using Outlook's RTF format then Windows Mail will never find the attachment. Windows Mail does not understand Outlook's RTF format. Ask the Outlook user to please use Plain Text, especially when sending attachments.

Frank Saunders MS-MVP IE,OE/WM"

Cheers,
Gerard



[Edited at 2009-03-20 23:36 GMT]


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Patricia Lane  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:28
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
something else Mar 21, 2009

Thanks for your input Gerard, but from what I've read on the Net, what you are describing is part and parcel of the winmail.dat problem, which is not the one I am encountering.

The client's emails are in HTML.

@Natalie: I've seen what happens when a file name includes diacritics: it just then includes additional characters in the file name whose extension does NOT change. The file still opens normally and you can restore the file name simply by removing the additional characters, including the starting _iso-8859 string.

Here, I am getting a file name that looks like this (I've shortened it by a third so it would fit on one line):
_iso-8859-1_B_UHJvZ3JhbW1lIFRlY2huaXF1ZSBEaGFzZSAxLSBCBtYXJzIDA5LnBkZg_.dat

You can't even *guess* what the real file name could be.

I am reluctant to bother the client, asking that they test by sending zip files etc. and would rather try find an explanation and solution. They don't have the problem with others outside their organization, nor do I receive .dat attachments from anyone else. Hence, where does the problem originate, and how to solve it....

Patricia


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Sergei Leshchinsky  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 21:28
Member (2008)
English to Russian
+ ...
If... Mar 21, 2009

... it appears in the message body as 'endless' set of lines of 65 chars each (possibly each starting with 'M'), along with being shown as attachment, then it might be UU-encoded attachment... Just copy the whole set into a txt file and use the corresponding command-line converter.

It is difficult to predict without seeing... Could you forward me the message to play... (non-disclosure guaranteed )


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