RE: imap and MS Outlook

1999-01-21 10:21:34

Are we talking about Outlook or Outlook Express?  Until at least the first
release of Outlook Express (formerly MS Internet Mail), these used two
radically different file formats.  Outlook stores data using the Windows
Messaging / MAPI framework whose data are accessible using MS' object models
from Visual Basic or other languages.  Outlook Express uses a much simpler
file format that others have reverse-engineered; surf starting at and look for mail message converters involving "Microsoft
Internet Mail."

I wrote a primitive dumper for Outlook data using Win32 Perl's OLE module.
Is this worth dusting off?  I didn't get as far as rescuing attachments, but
those are documented in the object model and shouldn't be too difficult to

There is also the LAOLA (later renamed to OLE-Storage) Perl module  for
working with MS files.  That might be usable with the .pst file used by

-- SP

From: owner-mhonarc(_at_)ncsa(_dot_)uiuc(_dot_)edu
Behalf Of Brent J. Nordquist
Sent: Thursday, January 21, 1999 4:27 AM
To: J(_dot_)Goldberg(_at_)Cranfield(_dot_)ac(_dot_)uk
Cc: mhonarc(_at_)ncsa(_dot_)uiuc(_dot_)edu
Subject: Re: imap and MS Outlook

| On Wed, 20 Jan 1999, Stephen Perkins wrote:
| > Unfortunately, the attachments generated by outlook don't use
| > mulit-part MIME.  Instead, the attachments are inlined as
a bunch of
| > uuencoded blocks.  Mhonarc does not recognize them as attachments.
| That is because these are NOT attachments according to
email standards.

MS uses a botch called TNEF (for "Transport-Neutral Encapsulation
Format").  I had the same problem when I moved all my mail
out of Outlook
using IMAP... the attachments are locked up in that
proprietary format.

Getting them out again won't be easy.  I tried to write a utility that
would translate them to standard MIME, but even with some
help from the
MAPI documentation on the MSDN CDs it was clear it would take a long
time to crack the code.  I can't find anyone else on the 'net that has
tried it.  It sure would be useful!

| It is possible to configure Outhouse to send mail in more Internet
| friendly ways, although it takes a bit of work.

Unfortunately, this doesn't solve the problem of rescuing two years'
history in your Outlook mail folders.  :-(

Brent J. Nordquist / bjn(_at_)visi(_dot_)com   |   Windows not found
W: +1 651 905-7806                  |   (C)heer, (D)ance, (S)ing?

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