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Old 07-16-2010, 09:31 AM   #1
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postfix / squirrelmail How to configure to request plain text email

I have spent a couple days googleing to find information concerning how to limit email receipt to plain text.
I believe I discovered that email servers can send mail as html or text and sending email servers somehow interrogate the destination server to see if it wants html or text. We would like to configure our server to respond to those queries that we want plain text email, but I have not been able to identify any discussion of how this would be done.
I would appreciate any suggestion of how this would be approached.
Thanks much.
Old 07-16-2010, 11:10 AM   #2
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One good thing would be to take out any references to allowing mime, or 8 bit. You're back to primitive emails but I ran mutt for a while in the 90s and after I stopped hating it I got along quite well with. Read something like this which probably contradicts what I just said.
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Old 07-16-2010, 03:50 PM   #3
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You misunderstand the way this works. The only interrogation that happens between the source mail server and the destination mail server is whether SMTP or ESMTP should be used (if ESMTP is chosen, there can be some further stuff like the format of authentication (PLAIN, MD5, SHA, etc) and whether the link will be encrypted (STARTTLS).

The flow of email looks like this:
MUA -> MTA -> MTA -> MUA

The Mail User agent on the sender's side decides if it's text or html. A mail user agent is something like thunderbird, or outlook. If the user chooses HTML, then that is what the sending MTA will pass on to the receiving MTA.

If you are really desperate to strip the html, you could write a procmail recipe that strips all the tags and execute that on the body of every incoming email.
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Old 07-17-2010, 08:28 AM   #4
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Thank you both. This is what I originally believed but I found somewhere a comment that said 'most modern email systems send mail as both html/rt and plain text'. What I had trouble figuring out was if both were always sent and the receiver grabbed what he wanted; the selection was made by the sender (which is to bad but what I now believe to be true); or the sender queried the receiver as I stated in my question.

I have since found the procmail / html2text solution and will be testing this next week. Sounds like a good solution, and I hope there are not to many gotcha's along the way.

I really appreciate your time.


postfix, squirrelmail

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