Outlook 2003 shows html code when To: field is empty

ipike

Member
Outlook version
Older version
Email Account
POP3
Hi there,
This is my first interaction ever with a Forum, so pleas be lenient.
There are similar threads, but none of the answers there solved my problem, and they are all closed.
I am using Outlook 2003 on a Windows 10, on a new 64b PC.
Some messages are showing in HTML code, and are therefore unreadable. Same messages show fine on a laptop I have.
After several experiments, I found out that:
- if a message is sent to me, I can read it.
- if the same message is sent to somebody, and I am on the Bcc list, I still can read it.
- If the same message is sent with the To: field blank, and I am on the Bcc list, I cannot read it. It shows up as HTML text.
It took a lot of investigation to discover this, and I saw no reference to this phenomenon in other threads. I hope knowing this this may help you help me, and any other person with the same problem
Thank you.
 

ipike

Member
Outlook version
Older version
Email Account
POP3
Thank you Diane,
I saw the virus suggested solution in previous fora, but it did not work for me. I am using Windows' Security and Malwarebytes Premium. I tried disabling both, but it made no difference.
I do believe that the empty "To:" field making the difference is somehow significant.
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
Windows security does not scan email - only 3rd party apps. I have no idea what malwarebytes scans...

When you disabled them, did you send a new message to test? Once broken, disabling the apps won't fix it.
 

ipike

Member
Outlook version
Older version
Email Account
POP3
Shouldn't an antivirus affect all messages, , independently of the To: field being blank or not? The problem appears only on messages that have the To: field empty.
 

ipike

Member
Outlook version
Older version
Email Account
POP3
No answer in a week! Does anybody have an idea?
Please HEEEEEELP !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

jessewalter375

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2019 64-bit
Email Account
Exchange Server 2013
After a LOT of searching I have gotten down to the bottom of this problem. There are actually 2 similar ways that this problem can occur. Both of them boil down to basically the same problem (lack of a Display Name).

1. When the user creates a new email the recipient's address will come from the cache file. If the email address doesn't contain a Display Name the Display Name ends up being ", and when you view the item in your Sent folder you'll see a blank name.

2. When the user does a Reply/Repy-to-All and the address doesn't contain a Display Name you'll notice that the address is Note: The offenders are always displayed in "<" and ">".

You can correct #1. by updating your contacts that don't contain a Display Name, so that future messages WILL contain one.

You can also correct #2 by being careful when using Reply. If you notice an address inside of "<" and ">", right-click on the address, pick Outlook Properties..., and update the Display Name field.

If Outlook were a bit smarter then perhaps it would use the email address, if Display Name == "", but until then keep an eye out, mainly when replying to email.

Hope this helps.
 
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