One of my end users has a bunch of old emails that look like the below text...I'm not sure how to begin fixing this (or if they can be fixed).

Any help would be appreciated!

html xmlns:v="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:vml" xmlns:o="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" xmlns:w="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:word" xmlns:m="http://schemas.microsoft.com/office/2004/12/omml" xmlns="http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40"> head> meta name=Generator content="Microsoft Word 12 (filtered medium)"> !--[if !mso]> style> v* url(#default#VML);} o* url(#default#VML);} w* url(#default#VML);} shape url(#default#VML);} /style> ![endif]--> style> !-- /* Font Definitions / @font-face Calibri; panose-1:2 15 5 2 2 2 4 3 2 4;} font-face Tahoma; panose-1:2 11 6 4 3 5 4 4 2 4;} / Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal 0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif";} a:link, span.MsoHyperlink 99; color:blue; text-decoration:underline;} a:visited, span.MsoHyperlinkFollowed 99; color:purple; text-decoration:underline;} p.MsoAcetate, li.MsoAcetate, div.MsoAcetate 99; mso-style-link:"Balloon Text Char"; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; font-size:8.0pt; font-family:"Tahoma","sans-serif";} span.BalloonTextChar "Balloon Text Char"; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-link:"Balloon Text"; font-family:"Tahoma","sans-serif";} span.EmailStyle19 personal; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; color:windowtext;} span.EmailStyle20 personal-reply; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; color:#1F497D;} MsoChpDefault export-only; font-size:10.0pt;} page Section1 8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.0in 1.0in 1.0in;} div.Section1 Section1;} -->

2 Answers 2


That's frequently the result of bad MIME headers. The result of this is that the mail client doesn't know how to handle a section, so it reproduces it in straight up text. That's supposed to be an HTML-encoded message, but clearly that specific mail client can't figure that out. There isn't much you can do for that, though those messages may be readable in other mail clients.

  • The email was opened in Outloook, what else should I have the user try to open the emails in? I'm not aware of any other clients that have direct Exchange integration.
    – Luniz
    Oct 28, 2010 at 19:56
  • Outlook Web Access may give different results. If you have IMAP enabled, Thunderbird may yield different results as well.
    – sysadmin1138
    Oct 28, 2010 at 19:59

If all you want to do is to be able to read those messages you could try copying the contents into a text file, editing the header, saving it as *.html and open it with a browser. That doesn't always work as well as it might but I've had fairly good results that way.

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