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  1. #1
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    Today I received an email from a co-worker in another state (not in my office) that is causing Outlook to crash. If I just highlight the mail item, Outlook crashes. Obviously this is a virus that my AVG did not catch. I just want to delete it, but cannot because of the immediate crash the second I highlight the mail item.

    Any suggestions on how to get rid of this corrupt email?

    Thanks,

    Rob Caldwell

  2. #2
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Caldwell View Post
    Today I received an email from a co-worker in another state (not in my office) that is causing Outlook to crash. If I just highlight the mail item, Outlook crashes. Obviously this is a virus that my AVG did not catch. I just want to delete it, but cannot because of the immediate crash the second I highlight the mail item.
    Not sure it's a virus... possibly a "malformed" message or something invalid in the message's HTML code.

    First, is this an Exchange or IMAP account? In that case, you could delete it on the server (using web access) and Outlook should mirror the deletion automatically. If it's a POP account, that won't work.

    Second, do you use a Preview or Reading pane? If so, displaying the message may be crashing Outlook. Try turning that off (View menu) and see whether you can select and delete the message. Or Shift+Del to bypass the Deleted Items folder and remove it permanently.

    Third, do you use any antivirus add-in for Outlook? If so, it may be crashing when it tries to scan the message, which isn't helping you. Try turning it off, deleting the message, and then turning it back on.

    If none of that works, then we might have to use something trickier.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jscher2000 View Post
    Not sure it's a virus... possibly a "malformed" message or something invalid in the message's HTML code.

    First, is this an Exchange or IMAP account? In that case, you could delete it on the server (using web access) and Outlook should mirror the deletion automatically. If it's a POP account, that won't work.

    Second, do you use a Preview or Reading pane? If so, displaying the message may be crashing Outlook. Try turning that off (View menu) and see whether you can select and delete the message. Or Shift+Del to bypass the Deleted Items folder and remove it permanently.

    Third, do you use any antivirus add-in for Outlook? If so, it may be crashing when it tries to scan the message, which isn't helping you. Try turning it off, deleting the message, and then turning it back on.

    If none of that works, then we might have to use something trickier.
    Thanks for the suggestions and here are the results:

    1. It is an POP account.

    2. I turned off the reading pane. The very second I select that particular message, BAM.... Outlook crashes. I didn't even have time to click delete. (or Shift+Del)

    3. I have turned off all anti-virus software and still no luck.

    I did some research last night and read that this might be an issue when one message is sent from a MS Exchange Server to another MS Exchange Server. It is the winmail.dat file that causes this. Even though I found this information, there was not a suggested solution, at least that I could find.

    Thanks,

    Rob Caldwell

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    Uranium Lounger
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    If this is a corrupt message, try running scanpst.exe on the PST. If that doesn't work, try running Outlook from the Start | Run box with the " /cleanviews" switch.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnBF View Post
    If this is a corrupt message, try running scanpst.exe on the PST. If that doesn't work, try running Outlook from the Start | Run box with the " /cleanviews" switch.

    I appreciate your response John. But I have no idea what you just asked me to do.

    Thanks,

    Rob Caldwell

  6. #6
    Uranium Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Caldwell View Post
    I appreciate your response John. But I have no idea what you just asked me to do.
    No problem, Rob.

    Close Outlook and all open Outlook windows. Using the Windows File Explorer, set to show hidden folders, find your active PST file to which mail is delivered and make a copy of it named <mypstname>.old, for backup purposes. Then using Windows File Explorer Search, find a program called scanpst.exe. Double click it and when it asks what PST file you want navigate to and select your current active PST (the one you just made a copy of). Let the process run, it will nearly always find at least some errors, and permit it to fix the errors and then create a backup. Then restart Outlook and see if your problem is solved.

    If the problem is not solved, Close Outlook and all open Outlook windows again. In the Windows desktop find and open the Start | Run command. At the ensuing system prompt enter (note the spacing): Outlook.exe /cleanviews. Outlook will start up. See if the problem is now solved.

    Post back here with your results.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
    UTC -7ąDS

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnBF View Post
    No problem, Rob.

    Close Outlook and all open Outlook windows. Using the Windows File Explorer, set to show hidden folders, find your active PST file to which mail is delivered and make a copy of it named <mypstname>.old, for backup purposes. Then using Windows File Explorer Search, find a program called scanpst.exe. Double click it and when it asks what PST file you want navigate to and select your current active PST (the one you just made a copy of). Let the process run, it will nearly always find at least some errors, and permit it to fix the errors and then create a backup. Then restart Outlook and see if your problem is solved.

    If the problem is not solved, Close Outlook and all open Outlook windows again. In the Windows desktop find and open the Start | Run command. At the ensuing system prompt enter (note the spacing): Outlook.exe /cleanviews. Outlook will start up. See if the problem is now solved.

    Post back here with your results.
    Ok. Took a few hours this Saturday afternoon to make an attempt at the suggestions you made, and had no luck with either scanpst.exe or Outlook.exe /cleanviews.

    My Outlook crashes every time I select this message.

    Any other suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Rob

  8. #8
    Uranium Lounger
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    This isn't looking good. Could you advise which version of Outlook you are running and on which OS? Try starting Outlook from the Start | Run command box:

    outlook.exe /cleanprofile

    Does that help? If not open Outlook in safe mode and see if you can delete the message:

    outlook.exe /safe

    Post back your results.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
    UTC -7ąDS

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnBF View Post
    This isn't looking good. Could you advise which version of Outlook you are running and on which OS? Try starting Outlook from the Start | Run command box:

    outlook.exe /cleanprofile

    Does that help? If not open Outlook in safe mode and see if you can delete the message:

    outlook.exe /safe

    Post back your results.

    I was FINALLY able to permanently delete the message in outlook.exe /safe mode. Whew!

    BTW... I am using MS Office 2007 on Vista Business.

    Thanks for all of your help!

    Rob Caldwell

  10. #10
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    I have had a similar problem on Outlook 2007 (POP) twice. The recent case was a forwarded benign message from a friend. I say benign because my Norton Antispam marked the message as spam even though there was nothing in the message or in the header to justify that classification and all other forwards from this sender stay in my Inbox. Whenever I tried to open this message Outlook crashed but I was able to delete it.

    Does anyone actually know the cause of this behavior?

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