Subject of SMS event notice is not decoded by smartermail
Problem reported by John Cody - 7/14/2015 at 8:05 PM
Submitted
If I setup an SMS notification and include the #subject# variable, the subject text is displayed in an uncoded UTF-8 format in my received sms message on my phone.
 
It seems smartermail is not first decoding the subject text before sending it out.
 
 

13 Replies

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Matt Petty Replied
Employee Post
Would you be able to provide an example of the received message.
So your seeing #subject# in the message?
Matt Petty
Software Developer
SmarterTools Inc.
(877) 357-6278
www.smartertools.com
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John Cody Replied
No, I am seeing something like below instead of the actual subject text:

SUBJ: UTF-8?AD7F03E5F22638A6
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Bruce Barnes Replied
SmarterMail version?
Bruce Barnes
ChicagoNetTech Inc
brucecnt@comcast.net

Phonr: (773) 491-9019
Phone: (224) 444-0169

E-Mail and DNS Security Specialist
Network Security Specialist

Customer Service Portal: https://portal.chicagonettech.com
Website: https://www.ChicagoNetTech.com
Security Blog: http://networkbastion.blogspot.com/

Web and E-Mail Hosting, E-Mail Security and Consulting
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John Cody Replied
It seems that if the subject text of an incoming email is encoded in UTF-8 format, then smarter mail does not decode it before it sends it out to the SMS notification email address - it just passes it through unchanged. And because the cell companies "Email-2-SMS" service is not very good, the subject text comes in as coded text, which is unreadable.
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John Cody Replied
13.5.5640
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John Cody Replied
OK, I just received another text message and here is the exact text:

FRM:mysmartermail@account.com
SUBJ:=?utf-8?B?MDAwREM1RDFDNkQ4KERhZEJhc2VtZW
MSG:From: 123@ABC.com
Email Size: 243 KB

Here is the script in the notification event:

Subject: #subject#
Short Body (SMS): From: #fromaddress#
Email Size: #sizekb# KB
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Matt Petty Replied
Employee Post
Could you try directing that email to a non-sms email, like a different personal email. Do you see this behavior on those emails?
Matt Petty
Software Developer
SmarterTools Inc.
(877) 357-6278
www.smartertools.com
0
John Cody Replied
No, probably because the email client I am using to view the email is properly decoding the subject field when it loads the email and displays it to me.

I guess because there is no email client being used after the email is converted into an SMS, that's why its not getting decoded.

But, if smartermail would decode the subject *prior* to sending out the email-2-sms email, then the subject would display OK.
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Joe Wolf Replied
I've used this feature for years and have never had a problem with my pone decoding the Subject. What kind of phone are you using?
Thanks,
-Joe
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John Cody Replied
Please understand, that the UTF-8 encoding of the subject depends on the application being used to send the email. So, it's not an issue with my phone (which is a Samsung S4).

Apparently, Foscam IP security cameras encode their subject using UTF-8, and that's the whole reason of why I am setting up a notification is because a "motion" alarm from the camera is important and I need to know right away.

Even though most email sending applications may not encode the subject in UTF-8, it appears to still be part of the email specification and should be supported.

In fact, Smartermail must have support for decoding of an UTF-8 subject because if I read the email in your webmail UI, it properly decodes the subject so it is legible.

I'm guessing that all you need to do is add that decoding routine into your notification module so it will decode any UTF-8 encoded subject before sending out a SMS notification.
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John Cody Replied
Also, part of the problem may be that the UTF-8 decoding routines depending on the text actually starting off with "UTF-8?" in the absolute beginning of the string. But since the subject text is being placed mid-way in the "body" of the outgoing SMS text, this may be why it is not being decoded properly.

(BTW, I am a developer myself)
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John Cody Replied
...and that's why Smartermail must decode the subject *before* building the outgoing SMS body text because thats the only time the subject is still a standalone object that will have "UTF-8" in the absolute start of the string and can be decoded properly.
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John Cody Replied
The bottom line is that some email sending apps/devices send the subject using UTF-8 encoding and some don't.
 
For the ones that do send email to me in UTF-8 format, if I setup a notification in smartermail, I get this in my notifications:
 
[subject=]  ?utf-8?B?MDAwREM1RDFDNkQ4KERhZEJhc2VtZW
 
So, all I am asking is for smartermail to properly decode the subject of an email *before* sending the text of the subject out in a notification.
 
 

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