E-mail with attached files appears empty to DCC

Gary Mills mills@cc.UManitoba.CA
Sat Mar 27 21:49:19 UTC 2004

We've had a few complaints from professors that some of their students
are unable to e-mail assignments to them because of our DCC bulk mail
filter.  These students use one of the free e-mail services, such as
Hotmail or Yahoo.  They simply attach a Word file to an e-mail message
with an empty body, and send it, expecting it to work.

Of course, the body of the message is really full of invisible multi-
part MIME and HTML goo, with an advertizing footer, making it appear
identical to many other empty messages from these services.  DCC rejects
it as bulk mail.

Is there anything that can be done with checksums so that DCC can detect
that such e-mail actually contains unique content, in the form of an

-Gary Mills-    -Unix Support-    -U of M Academic Computing and Networking-

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