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I don’t know if Windows® users get them, but occasionally I’ll receive an attachment from a coworker that uses Outlook® and instead of the attachment I’m expecting, it has a ‘winmail.dat’ file. You can read about the TNEF problem on Wikipedia but basically Outlook tends to mistakenly wrap the attachment, usually when the e-mail is composed in Rich Text mode. When the email is received, the wrapper is still there and non-Outlook mail readers don’t know what to do with it.

On the Mac I used a little utility called TNEF’s Enough that could open the winmail.dat file and extract the actual attachment. Today I received a winmail.dat file on Linux.

A search online for tnef and linux gave me enough info to know that a tnef utility is available in Ubuntu. I fired up the Synaptic Package Manager and searched and easily found it. I was about to install when I noticed a package that also came up in the search results- evolution-plugins-experimental. Hmm. A plug-in made for my mail reader Evolution? Too good to be true! Install!