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Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

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Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA
Accepted Solution

Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

[ Edited ]
I have discovered an issue (bug?) related to the time-date stamp when sending mail from within Act for Web (we are using Act Prem. for Web 2008). Been scratching my head over this for weeks, and finally am able to set a scenario where the issue/bug is reproducible. To make sure it's not a server issue, I have duplicated this problem on two different server installations: one running a fresh install of Win Server 2003 SP2, the other running Win XP Pro SP2. Here's the issue: If you send mail from Act's e-mail function between 1PM and 1AM, the recipient sees the mail as having been sent exactly 12 hours BEFORE it was actually mailed. I am able to reproduce this problem by manually changing the server clock. For example, if I set the server clock to 12:30PM and send a mail, the recipient sees the mail was sent at 12:30PM. Set the server clock to 1:30PM, and the recipient gets the mail with the final time-date stamp indicating it was sent at 1:30AM. The "error window" where this bug is active is exactly 1PM to 1AM -- a 12-hour window. Any mail sent from the server between those times will incorrectly report to the recipient as having been sent exactly 12 hours prior to actual send. This was discovered after I sent mail in the afternoon (after 1PM) to contacts, only to get responses asking what I was doing working from 2-5AM. This is especially a problem because most e-mail clients set the order of received mail by the time/date of receipt. A clock off by 12 hours on mail means mail might be out of view with some recipients who have large in-boxes. They would have to scroll up or down to see this new mail with an older time stamp. I am unaware of any setting in Act to adjust the time-date stamping of mail for this SMTP operation. There's nothing I'm aware of in server settings that might affect this, especially the oddity of the error occurring EXACTLY between 1PM and 1AM. Can anyone running Act for Web confirm this issue on their systems? Anyone have a solution to fix?

Message Edited by commstrat on 02-07-2008 02:14 PM

Accepted Solutions
Solution
Accepted by topic author commstrat
‎09-25-2015 03:20 AM
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

In follow-up to this post, I have determined that the problem is with a specific e-mail client not parsing the e-mail header file created by Act Web Server correctly.  In this case, Eudora 6.X is the possible issue.  Test sends to Outlook and Hotmail accounts showed correct receipt timeouts.  Closing this one out.  Thanks for prior ideas and suggestions.

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Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,388
Country: Australia

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

It's after 1am here now, but I might try this tomorrow... don't feel like changing the clock on the server while I'm tired :-)
 
Are you using 10.01? If not, add the patch and see if it still happens
 
Are you using the ACT! Web email client or Outlook? Have you tried the other?
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

According to my screen, I am using ver. 10.0.0.237. Also, it is important to note that I am using the ACT!-based (i.e. server) e-mail function (what you call the ACT! Web email client) NOT a server-based e-mail program such as Outlook or Eudora. In fact, when using any client-based e-mail program all is well since the mail is being sent from the client (and not the server). It's when mail is sent from the SERVER that the bug rears its ugly face.

(Side note: I could get around this problem by using client-based e-mail, but the issue is with a mail distribution of , for instance, 100+ contacts, it is rejected by my e-mail client (too many addresses sent to the TO: field), PLUS I can't get Act to send the addresses into the BCC: field of my e-mail client (which would accept hundreds of addresses) and is where they need to go for a typical customer mailing so as not to expose all the e-mail addresses to every other customer. I could manually generate e-mail addresses from the database to Excel, then copy/paste them into the BCC: field -- which is the ultimate hassle/waste of time...so many steps for each mailing; my lists change with each mailing.)
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,388
Country: Australia

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

Very sorry, I haven't had the chance to test this, will will do this weekend.
 
But first, I suggest you download and apply the 10.0.1 update from the act.com Downloads page. Let me know if that doesn't make a difference
 
Also, much better to do a Mail Merge than BCC lots of names... it's more personal and most ISPs don't like lots of CC/BCC names as it's nearly always spam
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

Thanks again.  Will download the 10.0.1 update and see if that fixes the issue.
 
Regarding mail merge, yes am aware of that option.  It's just faster to send the type of mail we distribute (press releases for client companies) to a large group(s) straight up with the Act server client (or local email client for that matter) with all addresses in the BCC field (to protect the privacy of everyone's address.) 
 
However, mail merge has the advantage of putting the addressee's name in the TO field, which is indeed better.  Merging in a document is the time-consuming issue.  But will look into ways to set up step-by-step procedures to streamline a merge. 
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,388
Country: Australia

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

While you would need to do this from the server (I don't think either works with the Web client), you might look at Merge Master or SwiftPage as better ways to send merges.
 
Let me know if the time is still out with 10.01 and I'll try to replicate it
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

I installed the 10.0.1 update and the problem still persists when sending mail from within Act. I did a few tests, sending mail from the server to various e-mail accounts, including some webmail accounts. Here's what I found that was interesting: some accounts "appear" to parse the correct time, others are off by the 12-hour problem. In other words, when I send mail to Eudora between 1pm and 1am, the time is off by 12 hours. On the other hand, Outlook "appears" to get it right. I sent a message to my ISP's webmail service; from inbox view the time is correct, BUT....when I open the mail it shows a mail sent at 2pm was sent at 2am. That's why I write that some e-mail receivers "appear" to get it the time right -- it may actually be cosmetic. I don't experience this problem with any other sending source to any of my acounts, so my thinking is that Act does something in the header file or some other element of the mail to throw the time-stamp off on the receiving end, whether it's an e-mail client on a PC or a webmail client. I looked at the headers and cant really see a ref flag. Could this be an issue related to a combination of: 1) the way Act generates mail and; 2) the way the mail is parsed by the receiving end? If you have a chance to test on your end, let me know. Thx.
Solution
Accepted by topic author commstrat
‎09-25-2015 03:20 AM
Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

In follow-up to this post, I have determined that the problem is with a specific e-mail client not parsing the e-mail header file created by Act Web Server correctly.  In this case, Eudora 6.X is the possible issue.  Test sends to Outlook and Hotmail accounts showed correct receipt timeouts.  Closing this one out.  Thanks for prior ideas and suggestions.
Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 14,388
Country: Australia

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending e-mail

Thanks for the update...

 

I don't have Eudora, but hopefully someone in support will see this and verify if it's an ACT! issue or a Eudora issue - then either fix it or inform Eudora :-)

Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 16
Country: USA

Re: Act for Web time-date stamp issue (bug?) when sending email

Thanks Mike.  The paid commercial version of Eudora (the latest being 7.X) was dropped by Qualcomm in May 2007.  So there's no patches coming for users still hanging on to the original email client.  There is a free beta version of Eudora 8 based on Mozilla Thunderbird and it will be open source.  Link to download Eudora 8 is https://wiki.mozilla.org/Eudora_Releases.  I took a quick look at the latest beta.  It's similar to the original Eudora but still not ready for prime time (e.g. can't read XHTML, stripped of some key usability & functionality features from the commercial version).