Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Opening MS Project Assignment in Outlook ( Answered,   1 Comment )
Subject: Opening MS Project Assignment in Outlook
Category: Computers > Software
Asked by: walgett-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 06 Jul 2004 08:44 PDT
Expires: 05 Aug 2004 08:44 PDT
Question ID: 370297
how do i open MS Project files in Outlook that are coming up as an a
"winmail.dat" file  attachement.  Is there a setting that needs to be changed
Subject: Re: Opening MS Project Assignment in Outlook
Answered By: aht-ga on 06 Jul 2004 19:42 PDT

The "winmail.dat" file is actually unique to MS Outlook/Exchange
clients, and Outlook/Exchange clients are the only e-mail clients that
are supposed to be able to automatically interpret them. Therefore, if
you are seeing a "winmail.dat" file attachment in an e-mail that you
have received in Outlook, then chances are that the actual
"winmail.dat" file is corrupt; there are no settings required as
Outlook automatically handles this file as long as it is not corrupt.

If you are wanting to experiment with this, then I recommend that you
first read this page:

Dealing with the winmail.dat file

and then, download the decoding program mentioned on the page, available from:
(the file to get is the free version of WMDecode)

Now, before I end this Answer to give you a chance to try the above,
please note that if you are using MS Outlook Express instead of
Outlook as your mail client, then you may indeed see the "winmail.dat"
attachment appearing due to the sender using rich-text formatting. In
which case, I refer you to the extra information on the biblet
webpage, in the WMDecode section, that refers to using Notepad to save
the raw e-mail data, then WinZip to decode the contents into a
winmail.dat file, then WMDecode to extract any usable attachments.

Please let me know if any of the above works for you; if not, please
provide me additional information such as the version of Outlook that
you are using, the e-mail client that the sender is using to create
the e-mails that you are receiving, and any software such as anti-spam
programs that you may have installed on your PC that could potentially
be changing incoming e-mails on you.


Google Answers Researcher

Request for Answer Clarification by walgett-ga on 07 Jul 2004 03:16 PDT
Dear aht,

Thank you for your very herlpful answer.

To provide a bit more background.  What I am specficially trying to do
is send a project task from MS Project to other members of my project
team.  When I email it to myself, I can open the small screen that
appears prompting for an update on the emailed task.

I use MS Outlook 2003 SP-3.  MS Project ash stiulated that receivers
of the emailed task must be using MAPI compliant email system.  The
file that accompnies the task as an attachment on any email is

Emails that I have successfully sent to myself appear as winmail.dat
when fprwarded to others, using the identical version of Outlook.  I
am trying to workout why other users of MAPI comliant email systems
receive it the task as a useless winmail.dat attachment and not the
working filename.mtm one I receive when emailed to myslef.

I hope this provides some clarification.

Thank you very much for your assistance.


Clarification of Answer by aht-ga on 07 Jul 2004 07:27 PDT
OK, that's a different situation than I interpreted from your original question. :)

There's a few additional questions that I need you to answer:

1. You are using MS Outlook 2002/XP SP3 (you said 2003, but there are
no service packs yet for Outlook SP3), are you using it with an
Exchange server or are you instead using it in "Internet Mail Only"

2. The recipients, are they using the same physical e-mail server that
you are, or are they receiving the e-mail through "the Internet"?

3. Are you sending the task update requests using address book
entries, or straight to an SMTP address entered directly into the
'To:' field, along the lines of: ?

The reason for these questions is because of the information included
in the following links:

How to Prevent the Winmail.dat File from Being Sent to Internet Users;EN-US;q138053

(IMO) Winmail.dat Attachments Included in Received Messages;EN-US;q196784

Essentially, the winmail.dat file is generated by the Outlook client
whenever an e-mail composed in Rich Text Format (RTF) is sent. The
winmail.dat file encapsulates the RTF formatting as well as the
contents of the e-mail including attachments. This winmail.dat file
can only be viewed properly if transmitted unaltered to a recipient
using MS Outlook. "Unaltered" means that none of the e-mail servers
that may be between you and the recipients are reformatting the
contents of the e-mail (through anti-spam or anti-virus efforts for

So, can you describe your e-mail "connections" in greater detail for
me, and also describe how you are sending the task update requests?


Google Answers Researcher

Clarification of Answer by aht-ga on 09 Jul 2004 10:00 PDT

It has been a few days since my last Clarification, so I thought I
would check in with you to see if you have been able to read it, and
can provide the information needed.


Google Answers Researcher
Subject: Re: Opening MS Project Assignment in Outlook
From: jackson1234-ga on 07 Apr 2005 01:27 PDT
WMViewer for Windows, It's a GUI utility to dealing with the
winmail.dat file (TNEF message),
It can extract the winmail.dat, view mail body and save any attachment. 
You can get it from

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy