Inside Entourage by Amir

A Blog Focussed on Entourage for Mac & Exchange Server

Parts of Hyperlink After Ampersand Sign Are Stripped in Entourage 2008

Parts of Hyperlink After Ampersand Sign Are Stripped in Entourage 2008

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Update: The fix for this issue has been released in the 12.1.2 Update for Office 2008 for Mac. 

Here is another known issue we are working to fix these days.

Issue
Entourage 2008 users are reporting that it is stripping parts of hyperlinks (URLs) in messages they receive from other users. It always strips parts of those hyperlinks right after '&', including the ampersand sign. This is only being reported by those users who have recently upgraded to Office 2008 for Mac Service Pack 1 (SP1). Examples of stripped URLs are:

Original Link:
https://www.contoso.com/dept/sales/abc.php?ABCD=0987654321&UID=987612345

Stripped Link:
https://www.contoso.com/dept/sales/abc.php?ABCD=0987654321=987612345

Note that '&UID' has been stripped

Original Link:
https://www.litwareinc.com/EntApp/ViewMsg.asp?MsgID=897&SaveID=7843~2945

Stripped Link:
https://www.litwareinc.com/EntApp/ViewMsg.asp?MsgID=897=7843~2945

Note that '&SaveCaseID' has been stripped

Cause
This happens as '&' is not properly encoded as '&amp' in the message source

Resolution
Microsoft is working to release a fix for this issue in an update for Entourage 2008 but a final release date is not available yet. I plan to update this post with new information in this regard when it becomes available.

Comments
  • Hopefully the update actually fixes the problem, but given the above explanation of the cause, I'm not optimistic: [ampersand] is supposed to be encoded as [ampersand]amp; in *html*; indeed, using a browser, when you click on a link in a html document, a browser will use the *rendered* form of the url, rather than the *source* form.  But Entourage does its dirty work even in absolutely plain text emails, with no html at all.  With such plain text emails you *can't* encode the ampersand, because if you cut and paste the URL into a browser, the browser will send the encoded form to the server, and, in general, that fails.  The problem seems to be that Entourage gratuitously changes the plain text to html, and then converts it back, but fails in one of the conversions...

  • Kent,

    The 12.1.2 Update has fixed this issue, download & install it and you will be good to go. The fix was to take into account any unexpected yet possible scenarios so that Entourage can better handle e-mails with such characters in hyperlinks.

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