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Poco Forums • View topic - Pocomail doing very strange things.

Pocomail doing very strange things.

Help and advice on using PocoMail

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Pocomail doing very strange things.

Postby mwoll » Fri Sep 17, 2004 1:21 pm

Hi - I'm using Poco 3.1 and lately it has been acting very strangely - it is a bit complicated so please bear with me....

Background - I'm using Win2000 and my computer has had some odd crashes recently. I have removed some spyware, reinstalled some software, etc and everything (except Poco) seems to be fine now. Don't know if any of this is related.

The first thing that happened was that automatic email checking stopped working. I have five Poco accounts on two servers and all are set to check for new messages every ten minutes. It worked fine and then one day it just stopped. I was able to set up an event in Poco to check one of my accounts, but the ordinary way hasn't worked in a month or so.

The next thing that happened is that some email messages started downloading multiple times. The one account with a check-mail event downloaded the same message a couple of hundred times. This seems to happen randomly on all accounts.

Finally (or maybe at the same time) Poco started getting stuck on some (but not all) messages with attachments - again on accounts from different servers. The progress bar shows the subject line and says 45 or 80 or whatever percent and then nothing more happens (and no other email on that account can get through).

I can use "check mail on server" to download and clear a "multiple" or "stuck" message or do the same with OE or Thunderbird - none of these being solutions I want to use.

What I have tried to fix all of this:

I used the debug mode on the stuck messages and the log file doesn't even show that a message was found.

I tried resetting various options - all I could think of. I recompressed mail boxes, cleaned out junk, etc.

I uninstalled McAfee anti-virus, tried AVG instead, then disabled all the auto-scanning functions on that. (I didn't make any firewall changes because that had been working all along and Poco had been working fine with it.)

Finally I uninstalled Poco, removed all traces of it in the registry, and reinstalled. Then I sort of cheated and copied all my old Poco ini and mail files into the new directory since I didn't want to set everything up from scratch. I did look through the poco.ini and couldn't find any obvious problems.

None of this has made any difference. Any thought of how to get out of this? I REALLY don't want to switch to Thunderbird!
MW
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Re: Pocomail doing very strange things.

Postby Eric » Sat Sep 18, 2004 12:47 am

Hi mwoll & welcome to Poco Forums. :D
mwoll wrote:Background - I'm using Win2000 and my computer has had some odd crashes recently. I have removed some spyware, reinstalled some software, etc and everything (except Poco) seems to be fine now. Don't know if any of this is related.
Did you remove all spyware using the rightful tools? Link in my sig for more information about rogue anti-spyware products. Also perform an online scan for virusses & others. You can find all that info here and here.
If not sure that your PC is clean, you can always post an hijackthis log for verification at Spywarewarrior.
The next thing that happened is that some email messages started downloading multiple times. The one account with a check-mail event downloaded the same message a couple of hundred times. This seems to happen randomly on all accounts.
What do you use? I suppose you leave mail on server (LMOS) or IMAP.
Finally (or maybe at the same time) Poco started getting stuck on some (but not all) messages with attachments - again on accounts from different servers.
It happens almost all the time on SPAM messages, which prevent downloading the other mails.
I uninstalled McAfee anti-virus, tried AVG instead, then disabled all the auto-scanning functions on that.
:shock: I wouldn't replace McAfee for AVG, but that's my opinion.
Finally I uninstalled Poco, removed all traces of it in the registry, and reinstalled. Then I sort of cheated and copied all my old Poco ini and mail files into the new directory since I didn't want to set everything up from scratch. I did look through the poco.ini and couldn't find any obvious problems.
Could you recheck if Poco is allowed by your firewall? BTW which one are you using? Also checking if you're actually online. File | Online Operation checked.
Any thought of how to get out of this?
We'll try to get you out of this mess, but it's a bit guessing for now. :wink:

Edit: adding info
Eric
 

Postby mwoll » Sat Sep 18, 2004 4:16 am

Thanks for the very quick response!

I'll try to repond to all you comments/questions:

1. I had used Spybot to get rid of the spyware. It now reports that the computer is clean.

2. My accounts are all POP and, no, I don't use LMOS. Most messages download correctly and are deleted from the server but occassionally one is not deleted and keeps getting downloaded. Switching to "view mail on server" or OE or Tbird fixes this.

3. It didn't used to get stuck on SPAM messages. I would assume that there was a change in the server's junk mail filters except that it happens on mail from both servers. Also, it happens on other, non-SPAM messages as well. Again, using "view mail on server" or OE or Tbird fixes this, so there is something very specific to Poco.

4. I uninstalled McAfee because my local computer Guru thought that it might be corrupted. I don't know.

5. I am using the NetDefense (SystemSuite) firewall. Poco is allowed and is defiinitely online - most incoming and all outgoing mail works fine.

A couple of other items:

6. The problem with automatic checking for messages ( or lack of it) doesn't seem to be related to communications with the server. Poco doens't seem to be doing anything at all at the 10 inute intervals when it should be checking for messages - nothing on screen and nothing in the log file. It is as if a timer has been turned off. But if I create a separate timed event it does work.

7. Is it possible that my local ISP's junk mail filters are doing something even when I am getting mail from a different server? Seems unlikely, but I don't know how these things work. I created a message with a PDF attachment and sent it to my own accounts on both servers - it got "stuck" on both of them. Unfortunately, if I call tech support at my ISP they tell me they have never heard of and can't give support for Poco and, anyway, everything must be OK because OE works.
MW
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Postby Eric » Sat Sep 18, 2004 7:19 am

mwoll wrote:Thanks for the very quick response!
You're welcome. :wink:
1. I had used Spybot to get rid of the spyware. It now reports that the computer is clean.
Spybot is fine, although it's no guarantee that you're spyware-free. Better double/triple checking it with other apps like:
- Ad-Aware SE: free (update definitions before performing scan)
- Webroot Spy Sweeper: not free, but you can update once the definitions.

:!: Did you also do an online scan or several?

2. My accounts are all POP and, no, I don't use LMOS. Most messages download correctly and are deleted from the server but occassionally one is not deleted and keeps getting downloaded. Switching to "view mail on server" or OE or Tbird fixes this.
Can you save the original message, which doesn't get downloaded, directly from the server through your webmail? If so, you could send the message to PSI, so they can take a look at it. If it's not to personal, of course.
3. It didn't used to get stuck on SPAM messages. I would assume that there was a change in the server's junk mail filters except that it happens on mail from both servers. Also, it happens on other, non-SPAM messages as well. Again, using "view mail on server" or OE or Tbird fixes this, so there is something very specific to Poco.
Spam messages are known for causing trouble in downloading, but normal messages not. Without seeing the original message it's not easy to find the cause.
4. I uninstalled McAfee because my local computer Guru thought that it might be corrupted. I don't know.
Even if it was corrupted, which I doubt, you can always download a new copy. McAfee is rated among the Top 3.
5. I am using the NetDefense (SystemSuite) firewall. Poco is allowed and is definitely online - most incoming and all outgoing mail works fine.
Thanks for checking.
6. It is as if a timer has been turned off. But if I create a separate timed event it does work.
Never seen it before, so it's really strange. Your accounts are checked for Timed check?
7. Is it possible that my local ISP's junk mail filters are doing something even when I am getting mail from a different server? Seems unlikely, but I don't know how these things work. I created a message with a PDF attachment and sent it to my own accounts on both servers - it got "stuck" on both of them.
Could be that the junk mail filters are doing something to the original message.
What size was the PDF-attachment?
Unfortunately, if I call tech support at my ISP they tell me they have never heard of and can't give support for Poco and, anyway, everything must be OK because OE works.
That's a big help from your ISP. :?
Eric
 

Postby mwoll » Sat Sep 18, 2004 2:29 pm

Thanks again for your thoughts about this. I have made some progress:

I got the auto message checking to work again! In accounts.ini there is a checkmaillast parameter for each account. I think the value must be a time - tenth seconds since 1991, perhaps. I set all the values to zero and auto checking started working again. My guess is that the values had somehow gotten set to some future time.

I also ran Ad-aware and it did find some more junk on the system.

I also realized that the "stuck" files and multiiple downloads are probably the same thing. Once the auto checking was working I started getting multiple downloads of a message that had been stuck. But the message attachment (repeated a bunch ot times in the attachment folder) had varying lengths and was unreadable. The log file had a line "DEL error: Socket Error # 0" for each bad download attempt.

So what is apparently happening is that Poco is having trouble either with attachments or maybe just downloads bigger than 20K or so and eventually quits with only part of the download completed. Then it tries again on the next auto check. If I do it manually usually stop the download before it times out. so the message seems to be "stuck".

So now I have a theory but still no solution. And again, it only affects regular Poco downloads. Using "check mail on server" to do the download completely bypasses the problem.

I have no filters or events active. I also tried disabling the firewall - no effect. I looked at running processes in Task Manager - nothing unusual there.

The last thing I tried was to move all the Poco INI files so that Poco would create new default ones. I then re-entered minimal account information and tried to check mail. The same "stuck" message was still stuck. So far I seem to have ruled out the Poco install and any major operating system or hardware glitch (since "check mail on server" handles the download with no problems). There must be something different about the way Poco handles a regular download and one done thru "check mail on server".

I will contact PSI support directly about this as soon as they repond to my lost-registration-number request. When I reinstalled Poco I discovered that I only had my old Poco 2 registration number in my records! There are so many ways to do stupid things with a computer.
MW
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Postby tribble » Sat Sep 18, 2004 4:15 pm

mwoll wrote: There are so many ways to do stupid things with a computer.


Amen!
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Postby Eric » Sat Sep 18, 2004 9:59 pm

mwoll wrote:I have made some progress: I got the auto message checking to work again!
That's good to hear. :)
I also ran Ad-aware and it did find some more junk on the system.
As a last check you can run Spy Sweeper. If this one doesn't find anything, you may be sure that your PC is absolutely clean. Of course if it finds Browser Village or Marketscore you can ignore it. Those are false positives.
OT: I use all three, together with Spywareguard, Spywareblaster, IE-Spyad. Those are all free. I absolutely hate junk on my PC. Maybe an overkill, but I don't care.
I also realized that the "stuck" files and multiiple downloads are probably the same thing.
You could perhaps as a test set your time-out higher. Options | Network Settings |Time out online operations after (seconds)
I will contact PSI support directly about this as soon as they repond to my lost-registration-number request.
That's the best thing you can do.
There are so many ways to do stupid things with a computer.
You tell me. I know all about it what people can do with a computer. They have to learn it the hard way. :lol:

Good luck. :wink:
Eric
 


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