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Help needed with E-mail problem

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Has anyone else experienced a problem where the e-mail program or ISP send duplicate multiple e-mails to the recipient?

I have scanned my computer with the latest anti-virus from Norton (fully updated). I have tried Outlook Express, Netscape navigator and Incredimail. But for some reason, whenever i send one e-mail the recipient gets up to 10 copies of the same mail. My outbox shows only one sent. This seems completely random, some times it send just one, other times 2 or 3, and sometimes up to 8 9 or 10 copies. There appears to be no set pattern.

Communicating with my ISP is not easy here, but my secretary contacted them and they said no problem with the server.

Can anyone give me a clue why this happens? Is there any setting on my computer that i can adjust?

Hoping for some advice, my pbem opponents get a little irritated when their inbox gets clogged up with 10 identical PBEM files.

Best wishes


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I haven't heard of the problem myself. The only one I'm familiar with is opening OutLook Express to receive a Hotmail account and having all new emails duplicated (just a second copy though, not 8+ duplications).

How many email accounts do you have ? You may want to try signing up for a web-based email account and send mail from your primary account to it and see if the problem is duplicated. If it doesn't, then somewhere in-between you and your opponent a mail-forwarding system is malfunctioning.

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No, you do not want to change your SMTP Port number. Leave it as is.

You need to send a file from your ISP's email account to your Hotmail account. If you get multiple emails, then there may be something wrong with your ISP mail account (or the message goes through the same mail forwarding system as it has to your opponents). This will allow you to confirm if there is a problem on your side or not.

If you duplicate the problem, try the same thing by using OutLook Express (I assume that's your main email client) and your Hotmail account and send a message to your ISP mail account. What this will determine is if there is something wrong with your email client that is causing the problem. If that doesn't duplicate the problem, then there is either something wrong with the ISP mail configuration or the mail doesn't go through the same pathway/mail forwarding system (or the outbound mail forwarding pathway from the Hotmail account doesn't have the same problem as your ISP's account).

So to review:

1) Send an email from your ISP account (the one that your opponents are claiming posts 8-10 duplicate emails) to your Hotmail account. Confirm whether you can see the 'duplicating messages' problem. You may want to try this a couple of times and with attachments. Be aware that your Hotmail system has a 2Mb storage limit (typically).

2) If you can't see the problem, then it is most likely a problem with a mail-forwarding system that is beyond your control.

3) If you DO see the problem, then it is either a mail-forwarding system that you again have no control over or it may be some sort of problem with your email client or computer.

4) If you see the problem with Hotmail receiving multiple copies of email from your ISP account, then you can check out the path that the email went through. In OutLook Express you can open the email and then go to File > Properties (on the individual email window) and click on the Details tab. In here you'll see the various systems that have been responsible for forwarding the email. It may be worth it at this point to contact your ISP and tell them of your problem and give them a list of email forwarding systems and they might look into it to find out which one has a problem. I don't know how to do this when reading your Hotmail account on the web.

5) If you want to possibly narrow down the list of potential problem email forwarders, then send an email from your Hotmail account to your ISP account. Do the same thing as above to check out the forwarding details. If the problem doesn't duplicate, see what kind of differences there are between your Hotmail path and your ISP path (if you don't get multiple copies sent from your Hotmail account).

6) If you do receive multiple copies of an email from your ISP, confirm that it isn't a problem with your email client by sending another message from your ISP account to your Hotmail account. This time don't read the Hotmail in your email client. Instead open your Hotmail account on the web and see if the messages are duplicated there. If they are, then it is an even greater likelihood of a mail forwarding system malfunctioning and not your email client being corrupt.

7) The next thing to do (if your ISP account received multiple copies of an email from your Hotmail account and you sent it from your email client) is to compose an email on your web-based Hotmail account (don't use your email client to compose and send this message). If the mail duplicates again on your ISP account then it is almost a certainty that an email forwarding system is to blame.

[ August 10, 2002, 12:03 PM: Message edited by: Schrullenhaft ]

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Ok i did some tests.

Using the same e-mail account from home and from my laptop at work i sent e-mails to my self (Back to my e-mail address) with a copy to my Hotmail account. My hotmail account got 2 copies of the mail and my normal e-mail account got one. (I clicked send/receive after sending the mail).

This confirms that the problem is not with my computer, or my laptop.

The last PBEM file i sent yesterday to my opponent who received it 35 times!

Now, when you say send an e-mail from my ISP to my hotmail account how do i do that?

What is the difference between my Outlook express e-mail and my ISP e-mail? I thought it was the same.



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What is the difference between my Outlook express e-mail and my ISP e-mail? I thought it was the same.
Outlook is your email client reader and it can be setup to read different email accounts. In your case you probably use it to read mail sent to your ISP account. It can also be used to read Hotmail (rather than reading it in a web browser).

I've seen Outlook Express 'double up' on received emails if you open the 'Inbox' before it has fully received the emails sent to it. This typically happens with Hotmail being received in Outlook Express and other email accounts may do something similar.

From the sound of things the problem is beyond your reach. If you can't duplicate the problem with emails sent between your accounts, then it is most likely an email forwarding system that is 'multiplying' your emails. Someone has accidentally or maliciously configured a server to repeat all outgoing messages, in their entirety, multiple times.

You can have your PBEM recipients go through the method I mentioned abouve to find out 'where the email has been'. One of these 'hops' is broadcasting the email improperly.

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I don't have the problem sending e-mails, but I often get duplicate turns from one of my regular opponents. Neither of us use hotmail and it happened when I used to use Turnpike and still happens with OE. It's no big deal to me so I never bothered the guy about it, but it's apparent from posting times that he has only sent it once.

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