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Windows 7: HTML vs Plain Text In Windows Live Mail

18 Oct 2014   #1

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
HTML vs Plain Text In Windows Live Mail

I read that it was better to use plain text than HTML when composing emails and when I go into 'options' = 'mail' I notice that I have HTML checked. Should I change it to plain text or does it matter? (Everything seems to have worked out so far and I've never had anybody complain about how my emails appear to them.)

Obviously there's no urgency on this,


My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Oct 2014   #2

W7 Pro SP1 64bit

As I understand it, the only thing that is better about plain text is security. Getting info in as plain text is safer for you. Sending info out to others as plain text is safer for them.

If you send info out as HTML and the e-mail reader on the other end is set to convert all incoming e-mails to plain text, then the info that you sent might not be as clear to them. e.g. If you place images in the body of your e-mails, those images get changed to be attachments and replaced with references to those attachments. Your e-mail could read like:

This is what I see
but this is what I should see
when I click on this button:
What could be wrong?

If you set your e-mail software to compose e-mails as plain text, then you could create a PDF that contains your text with inline images. Send the PDF as an attachment and let the recipient read a nice illustrated document.

But I just send HTML e-mails and I include inline images. I leave it to my recipients to deal with making it readable if they force HTML to plain text conversions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Oct 2014   #3

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

Thank you for the information, I'll probably leave things as they are because as soon as I mess with them, bad things happen.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

21 Oct 2014   #4

Windows 8

Sending as Plain Text isn't more secure for you BUT reading emails as Text (or simple HTML in some readers) IS more secure.

The main reason is that when in HTML, the email reader automatically opens images. Those images are hosted on the internet, and when accessed will warn the sender (or anyone who owns the server hosting the image) that the email was read.

This is a good sign the email account is live, your email adress might then be sent to spammer networks and you'll start to get a flood of spam. This is the same reason why it's recommended to never answer to spammers, since this only confirm you are valid target, but with images embedded in HTML it's all automatic... Once you see them, you're doomed.

Even worse, in many malicious mails of this kind, the pictures are pixel size or hidden and you don't even realize they are present.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2014   #5

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

I've just looked at my email settings again and I'm not sure how it's set for receiving email. The only settings I could see are for sending (Options - Send tab) which is HTML for emails and plain text for news.

Could you please tell me where to find the settings for receiving emails in Windows Live Mail? There doesn't seem to be any option when I click Options - Read tab.

Thank you
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2014   #6

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

I think I answered my question. I clicked Options - Safety Options - Security and I clicked the radio box next to Block images in HTML email and I clicked the radio box next to Show images sent from my safe senders.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 HTML vs Plain Text In Windows Live Mail

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