The Computer Corner

 

 

Here are a few tips for using *most* mail lists to make life easier for everyone.  This guideline is not the "be all - end all" list.  Just some friendly advise for new users and old timers alike.

bulletIntroduce yourself, the type of pit you use, where your from and your experience level.

bulletIf you ask a question, make sure the subject of the question is in the subject of the message.

bulletWhen a thread drifts from the original subject, please change the subject.  People that were not interested in the old thread may have important info to add to the new one.

bulletMessages that include html code or rich text formatting cause problems for many mail list servers and clients.

Many of the newer email programs (Eudora, Microsoft Outlook/Outlook Express, Netscape) encourage users to send email containing multiple fonts, embedded pictures, etc. This is called such things as "rich text", "styled text", "html mail".

The message sent will contain at least two parts. The first is a plain text version of the message, the second is the same text with all the pretty stuff added. If there are pictures or address cards attached, there will be more. 

Some older email programs will show the message and all the html tags instead of making it look pretty.

Digests for lists really screw up!  All the pretty stuff shows up as html tags and a lot of garbage.  This makes the digest huge, wastes bandwidth, and for the most part makes the digest useless since nobody will wade through all of that to get to the real message.

So, how do you prevent this?  Simple, configure your email program to send messages as plain text. Below you should find the directions for the more popular email programs to make these changes!

MS Outlook

If you use Microsoft Outlook or Outlook Express to send email, you have two choices. 

(1)  You can create an entry in the Address Book for each mail list. On the Name tab of the Properties entry, there is a checkbox
at the bottom left labeled "Send E-Mail using plain text only.". This box should be checked. 

If you already have an Address Book entry for the mail list, select the entry in the Address Book and then select File/Properties and then click the Name tab. 

If you create a new entry for the mail list, the Name tab will be presented to you to fill out. 

(2) The other way to send plain text from Outlook is to first begin the message. Then select the Format menu and click the "Plain Text" item.

Netscape

If you use Netscape email, the options are similar. In the Address Book, the Name tab of an address card has a checkbox labeled "Prefers to receive rich text (HTML) mail". This box should NOT be checked. You are presented with this tab when you create a new card. 

If the card already exists, select it in the Address Book and then select Edit/Card properties. 

Alternatively, begin a new message to the mail list then click the "Message Sending Options" tab in the "Addressing Area" (select View/Show Addressing Area if you can't see this) and then select "Plain Text" from the Format option box.

Eudora

If you use Eudora, select the Tools/Options menu item, then select "Styled Text". Under the "When sending mail with styled text (HTML):" heading, check the "Ask me each time" box. Uncheck the "Send the signature with styles" box. If you never want to send html mail, check the "Send plain text only" box. Alternatively, write the message to eat-lf and before sending (or queuing) it, select all the text in the message (using CTRL-A or the Edit/Select All menu item) and then click the "Clear Formatting" button on the formatting bar. If you can't see the formatting bar, check the "Show formatting bar" box in Tools/Options/Styled Text page.

 

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Friday, May 05, 2000
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