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View What is the size limit for messages and attachments?FAQ

From: Email Guy
Subject:       What is the size limit for messages and attachments?
Date: February 28, 2007 10:40 PM
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The total allowed message size at EarthLink, including the message text and all attached files, is 10MB. This limit applies to both incoming and outgoing messages, and applies whether you use Web Mail or other email software.

A 10MB limit is used by most major email providers, so even if we allowed larger limits, many of your recipients wouldn't be able to receive the file. Email isn't really a suitable medium for moving around very large files, and was never intended for that use. If you need to give someone a large file, use one of the many free services that let you upload any size file and then email a link to your recipient to retrieve it. Or post the files on your own web site if you have one.

For techies: we also make an allowance for the MIME encoding bloat so that you can actually send or receive a 10MB file. Some services advertise a 10MB limit, but enforce it after MIME encoding, so that you can actually only send about 6.5 MB in attached files on those services. We allow a full 10MB plus a little margin. (MIME just refers to a set of encoding standards used to turn all email content into ASCII text for transport, and the email program on the other end knows how to un-encode it. ASCII basically refers to the set of characters you see on an English keyboard, plus a few others. That's why if you "View Message Source" for an email message with attachments, you see a big block of printable text for your attached files. That's encoded binary data.)

View How do I save (or delete) my login and password?FAQ

From: Email Guy
Subject:       How do I save (or delete) my login and password?
Date: February 23, 2007 8:01 AM
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Users ask for help saving their email address or password on the login page, or help removing a saved email address or password on the login page.

First understand that in addition to the "Remember My Email Login" checkbox feature on the Web Mail login page, your browser also has a form autocomplete feature, and the difference between the two can sometimes be confusing. Your browser has the ability to save all form entries including passwords. Web Mail will never save your password, and only has the option to save your email address.

Leaving the browser feature aside for the moment, here's how the Remember Me feature on the login page works. When you check that option, your email address will be pre-loaded in the login box next time you visit the page. If it isn't working, there are two possible causes:

  1. You are blocking or deleting cookies. The only way Web Mail can save this email address for you is by saving a cookie in your browser. You must allow cookies for earthlink.net to be saved. If you subsequently delete all your browser cookies, the saved email address will be lost.
  2. You may be using an incorrect URL (browser address) to go to Web Mail. You must alway use only "webmail.earthlink.net" for your login page in order for the email address to be remembered. If you are a hosting customer, the correct URL is "webmail.hosting.earthlink.net".
Once you have saved your email address by using the checkbox on the login page, you can remove it simply by unchecking the box, and logging in to Web Mail.

Your browser's form autocomplete feature behaves differently. After you put your cursor in the login box (or an entry box on any page), if you start typing, or press the down arrow key on your keyboard, your browser will show you a list of all saved entries you ever used in that box. You can select one and use it to log in. This is useful when you use multiple email acccounts, or you share the computer with family members. However, some users don't want their email saved on shared computers. So to stop this from happening, you must turn off the autocomplete feature in the browser. In IE it is in under Tools / Internet Options / Content. In Firefox the setting is under Privacy. All browsers will have a similar setting.

If you want to delete only a single entry in the list that is remembered by your browser, then click the form box to put your cursor in it, then press the down arrow key to show you all the entries. Then use the down arrow key to move the selection to the one you want to remove, and press Delete on IE, or Shift-Delete on Firefox. One of these will work for most other browsers.

Your browser also has a special setting to remember any form entries that were put in an entry box named "password". Those are treated separately by your browser so that you can save all form entries except passwords if you wish. Again, Web Mail never remembers passwords, only your browser can do that. So to clear a saved password, look in your browser settings.

UPDATE - to restore this functionality in your browser, see this comment and if you have Firefox 1.5 see this one too.

View New enhancements to the blog searchGeneral

From: Email Guy
Subject:       New enhancements to the blog search
Date: February 17, 2007 12:06 PM
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Thanks to a new plugin written by Stepan Riha over at http://www.nonplus.net/software/mt/ the search results on this blog will now link you directly to comment entries and responses that contain exactly what you are looking for. This makes searching for the answer to your question much easier than before.

Just type a couple of words or an exact phrase enclosed "in quotes" in the search box on the main page of the blog, and you'll get direct links to your answer and won't have to scroll through a long page of comments trying to find what you are looking for. You can also click the Advanced Search link for more options. With this new enhancement, I'll probably be removing the "Search This Page" link that I had put at the upper right of the archive pages as a temporary workaround for this problem.

Some questions are asked over and over on this blog because it has been difficult for readers to find where it had already been answered. Now both readers and myself will have a much easier time. Note however, that if your question has been answered several times before, I probably will stop publishing most repeats of the identical question. So please use the search feature before asking new questions in the Ask Email Guy thread.

Thanks again Stepan, I really appreciate you creating this feature for me on short notice.


View About the Web Mail outage on 2/16General

From: Email Guy
Subject:       About the Web Mail outage on 2/16
Date: February 17, 2007 10:31 AM
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Yesterday, Friday 2/16, Web Mail was unavailable for all users for about 2 hours beginning at 2:20 PM EST. Many users asked about the problem in Ask Email Guy, and rather than reply to that question many times I've posted the explanation here on the front page and didn't publish those questions.

This outage was caused by a fluke accident in our datacenter and is not an issue that will repeat. Unfortunately it took about 2 hours to restore service, and I apologize for the inconvenience to our users.

Anytime you cannot access Web Mail for any reason, you can use your own email software as a backup. If you don't have a preferred application then just use the email program that is already on your computer, like Outlook Express, Mac Mail, etc. Just check your programs menu; all computers come with email software on them. All you need to set up to check your EarthLink Email is to put the server name "pop.earthlink.net" in the account settings for the incoming mail server, and enter your email address and password. If you normally use Web Mail-only then you will also want to check the option in Advanced settings to "Leave Messages On the Server" so that all your messages will still be viewable in Web Mail.

Again, we apologize for the inconvenience.

View How do I view messages in Known Spam?FAQ

From: Email Guy
Subject:       How do I view messages in Known Spam?
Date: February 13, 2007 8:05 AM
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When you click on Known Spam you will see a a graph of message counts per day instead of a list of messages. The caption at the top of that screen says,

"All Known spam that is sent to your address is currently being deleted. The graph below shows how much spam has been caught by Known spam Blocking over time."
That is the default setting, to count it and delete it. Our false positive rate (flagging a good message as spam) is less than one in one million, so this method is best for most users and allows us to provide better service without storing all of the 100+ million spam messages we process every single day.

You can change that setting by clicking on spamBlocker / Settings and scrolling down until you see the setting that says, "Delete Known Spam Immediately" and just change that to Off. Then you will see a message listing similar to other folders when you click on Known Spam. The most recent 100 Known Spam messages up to 10 days old will be saved in that folder. When a message in that folder reaches 10 days old it will be deleted automatically unless you move it to another folder. If the message count goes over 100 in less than 10 days, only the last 100 are saved.

One reason users get confused about the Known Spam folder is because of a bug in the message count shown beside the Known Spam folder name on the main Web Mail page. That is being fixed in the upcoming release. It should always show zero if the messages have been deleted, and should always show the correct count if they are being saved.