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Pictures, Attachments, or Senders Blocked
in Outlook Express & Windows Live Mail

A number of Outlook Express users have written to ask why mail from certain senders goes directly into their Deleted Items (Trash) Folder. This is because their names had been placed on the readers' "Blocked Senders" list.

OE users can block mail from a particular email address by clicking on an unwanted message and then clicking Message>Block Sender. Sadly, it's not uncommon for users to accidentally block friends with these steps. However, friends' names can be removed from this list by clicking Tools>Message Rules>Blocked Senders List, and deleting those you do NOT want blocked.

The tools for blocking a particular sender were created to help fend off unwanted spam. However, it tends to be an impotent rule, since spammers rarely use the same return address twice. Their money is made when prospects click a link in an email, which leads to a website where the usual bill of fare is drugs and/or pornography.

If you click "Remove Me from Mailing List," all you do is confirm your address's validity, which means you will receive even more spam. However, a "Remove Me" link from legitimate businesses will normally halt future advertising emails.

Also, creating a "White List" can ensure that only mail from correspondents you put on the list will go to a specified folder. OE users can click Tools>Message Rules>Mail and choose Where the From line contains people in the Conditions box, and Move it to Specified Folder in the Actions box. Finally, in the Rule Description box click Contains People and insert the email addresses of friends and others you wish to hear from. Then click Specified Folder and create a new folder named White List (or Safe List, or whatever you prefer).

This will not stop spam from going to your Inbox. It simply means that periodic deleting of messages in the Inbox will not affect mail from folks on your favored list.

OE Users Unable to See Pictures in Email or Open Attachments

Another frequent complaint from OE users is that they can't open attachments or see pictures in their email. This can usually be fixed by going to Tools>Options>Security and Unchecking the Do Not Allow Attachments and Block Images options.

Remember, however, that most viruses are received as email attachments; so do not open any you are not expecting. Most virus-bearing files have an extension of EXE, ZIP, or PIF. However, even MSWord DOC files can be carry a virus.

If you don't see extensions on any of your files, click here for instructions on making them visible.

Also, do NOT depend on your anti-virus software to catch all incoming threats. There is usually a 3 or 4-day lag between a new virus being distributed and the time it takes anti-virus companies to detect it and send clients updated protection.

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