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digging down in the stored email you will find the messages stored in plain text,
i.e. there's a files in there called Inbox, Inbox.msf (also Sent, Trash ...) The ones without extensions are your messages.
If for some weird reason thunderbird wont play (which is rare) you can read those files with nothing more than notepad/np++ and see messages - A bit messy for the html formatted but you can search for and find body text.
- in fact many other mail clients will recognise those files as RFC-whatevernumber email files and open them correctly.
as usual it's only microslop that does things differently, they broke [and attempted kill] that standard decades ago, and never fixed it.
Signature ready for installation. Please Reboot now.
it's very cool to see developers think this type of stuff through and solve it properly.
Of course, it probably does have to do with being very open and not trying to lock your data up in proprietary software so you can never move away from them.
I didn't even expect what I did (simple copy) to actually work and I was stunned when it did.
At some point this is thought to be too easy, too simple. So a developer comes up with a bright idea, perhaps to encode the emails because it is 'more secure', or to put it in XML because 'thats the way things are done these days' and he wants to put it on his CV, or to use some new technology, because its like playing with a new toy to him.
And it f***s up.
This is why oldversion.com exists. Because so many software engineers are twats, and I have worked with quite a few.
Th federal government is full of colons, and it doesn't work either. Maybe you're on to something.
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Most of 'em, it's homework.
And I'm not sure it's "honestly clueless" so much as "too lazy to bother" in many cases. I suspect that various government attempts to get everybody coding by making it a compulsory course is getting us a lot of visitors who have no interest in development, or indeed learning anything at all.
Bad command or file name. Bad, bad command! Sit! Stay! Staaaay...
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To be fair I have recently come across one or two who are "honestly clueless". Either the teaching really is rubbish (probably) or they are just unable to understand the basics of programming (but think it's quick route to a well paid job).