VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign. - VMS

This is a discussion on VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign. - VMS ; Dear comp.os.vms, This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail. Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-) On the other hand, ...

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Thread: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

  1. VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.


    Dear comp.os.vms,

    This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.

    Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)

    On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    me how you set up your VMS mail.

    We are running
    Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3

    SYNOPSIS:

    VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.

    I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    message into other text characters.

    In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.


    THE DETAILS:

    Some screen copy:

    > OPS_DEVBN2> mail
    >
    > MAIL> send
    > To: ops
    > CC:
    > Subj: Tilde Test
    > Enter your message below. Press CTRL/Z when complete, or CTRL/C to quit:
    > ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    > ~~~~~~
    > asdfghjk
    > ASDFHJK;
    >
    >
    > MAIL> SEL/NEW
    > %MAIL-I-SELECTED, 1 message selected
    >
    > MAIL> READ
    >
    >
    > #1 13-MAR-2008 14:21:10.89 NEWMAIL
    > From: DEVCLU::OPS
    > To: OPS
    > CC: OPS
    > Subj: Tilde Test
    >
    > $ $ $ $ $
    > $$$$$$
    > asdfghjk
    > ASDFHJK;
    >
    > MAIL>


    PLEASE notice how VMS Mail translates the tilde character
    "~" into a dollar sign. This means that when I receive a
    URL with a tilde in it (very common in expressing users'
    private spaces at a particular domain) the URL is not
    directly usable in a browser window.

    The tilde gets translated to a dollar sign on receiving
    mail, not on transmitting, as verified in tests sending
    tilde's to non-VMS machines on the local net. The tilde
    characters arrive just fine and are displayed correctly
    on those machines.

    I'm shocked that VMS would do something like this.


    THE REQUEST:

    How did this logic come about? Is there some VMS logical
    that we can set to prevent this from happening? I had a
    quick scan of the online VMS Mail documentation and found
    no reference. So far, other than confirming the fault,
    I can't find anyone here who knows anything about it.

    Thanks.

    . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a

  2. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Fred Bach wrote:
    >
    > Dear comp.os.vms,
    >
    > This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >
    > Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >
    > On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    > and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    > me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >
    > We are running
    > Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    > 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >
    > SYNOPSIS:
    >
    > VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    >
    > I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    > translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    > message into other text characters.
    >
    > In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    > makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    > effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.
    >
    >
    > THE DETAILS:
    >
    > Some screen copy:
    >
    >> OPS_DEVBN2> mail
    >>
    >> MAIL> send
    >> To: ops
    >> CC:
    >> Subj: Tilde Test
    >> Enter your message below. Press CTRL/Z when complete, or CTRL/C to quit:
    >> ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    >> ~~~~~~
    >> asdfghjk
    >> ASDFHJK;
    >>
    >>
    >> MAIL> SEL/NEW
    >> %MAIL-I-SELECTED, 1 message selected
    >>
    >> MAIL> READ
    >>
    >>
    >> #1 13-MAR-2008 14:21:10.89 NEWMAIL
    >> From: DEVCLU::OPS
    >> To: OPS
    >> CC: OPS
    >> Subj: Tilde Test
    >>
    >> $ $ $ $ $
    >> $$$$$$
    >> asdfghjk
    >> ASDFHJK;
    >>
    >> MAIL>

    >
    > PLEASE notice how VMS Mail translates the tilde character
    > "~" into a dollar sign. This means that when I receive a
    > URL with a tilde in it (very common in expressing users'
    > private spaces at a particular domain) the URL is not
    > directly usable in a browser window.
    >
    > The tilde gets translated to a dollar sign on receiving
    > mail, not on transmitting, as verified in tests sending
    > tilde's to non-VMS machines on the local net. The tilde
    > characters arrive just fine and are displayed correctly
    > on those machines.
    >
    > I'm shocked that VMS would do something like this.
    >
    >
    > THE REQUEST:
    >
    > How did this logic come about? Is there some VMS logical
    > that we can set to prevent this from happening? I had a
    > quick scan of the online VMS Mail documentation and found
    > no reference. So far, other than confirming the fault,
    > I can't find anyone here who knows anything about it.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a


    Works just fine for me. Send ~, get ~.
    VMS Alpha 8.2.

    Jan-Erik.

  3. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article , Fred Bach writes:
    >
    >Dear comp.os.vms,
    >
    > This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >
    > Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >
    > On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    > and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    > me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >
    > We are running
    > Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    > 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >
    >SYNOPSIS:
    >
    > VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    >
    > I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    > translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    > message into other text characters.
    >
    > In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    > makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    > effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.


    Wow! Confirmed!

    Not on V7.3-2 but V8.3 does exhibit your reported behavior.

    --
    VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM

    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"

    http://tmesis.com/drat.html

  4. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    On Mar 13, 10:25 pm, Fred Bach wrote:
    > Dear comp.os.vms,
    >
    > This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >

    [...snip...]
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a


    Just did some testing from a V8.3 system to V7.1-2, V7.3-1, V8.2
    and V8.3 system and the only one that is broken is the V8.3 one.
    Looks like the feature crept in somewhere in V8.3.

    Dave

  5. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Fred Bach wrote:
    >
    > VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.


    I can reproduce this on Alpha VMS 8.3

    However, it is not quite like you have made it look.

    The tildes are inside the message:

    EXTRACT will create a text files with the untranslated tildes
    IMAP will fees the client with intact tildes
    DECW$MAIL do not do any cosmetic surgery on the tildes.

    It seems it is only the character cell MAIL which will filter out the
    tilde character upon display onto a terminal. Probably has something to
    do with it also filtering escape sequences.

  6. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    David B Sneddon wrote:

    > Just did some testing from a V8.3 system to V7.1-2, V7.3-1, V8.2
    > and V8.3 system and the only one that is broken is the V8.3 one.
    > Looks like the feature crept in somewhere in V8.3.


    I concurr. VAX-VMS 7.3 displays the tildes un translated for the very
    same mail message in the same mailbox/directory that Alpha-VMS 8.3
    translates.

    I would have to fire up a real VT terminal and put it in "display
    control character" mode to see if "$" is the only thing being sent
    instead of the tilde.

  7. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article , Fred Bach wrote:

    > Dear comp.os.vms,
    >
    > This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >
    > Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >
    > On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    > and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    > me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >
    > We are running
    > Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    > 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >
    > SYNOPSIS:
    >
    > VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    >
    > I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    > translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    > message into other text characters.
    >
    > In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    > makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    > effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.
    >
    >
    > THE DETAILS:
    >
    > Some screen copy:
    >
    > > OPS_DEVBN2> mail
    > >
    > > MAIL> send
    > > To: ops
    > > CC:
    > > Subj: Tilde Test
    > > Enter your message below. Press CTRL/Z when complete, or CTRL/C to quit:
    > > ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    > > ~~~~~~
    > > asdfghjk
    > > ASDFHJK;
    > >
    > >
    > > MAIL> SEL/NEW
    > > %MAIL-I-SELECTED, 1 message selected
    > >
    > > MAIL> READ
    > >
    > >
    > > #1 13-MAR-2008 14:21:10.89 NEWMAIL
    > > From: DEVCLU::OPS
    > > To: OPS
    > > CC: OPS
    > > Subj: Tilde Test
    > >
    > > $ $ $ $ $
    > > $$$$$$
    > > asdfghjk
    > > ASDFHJK;
    > >
    > > MAIL>

    >
    > PLEASE notice how VMS Mail translates the tilde character
    > "~" into a dollar sign. This means that when I receive a
    > URL with a tilde in it (very common in expressing users'
    > private spaces at a particular domain) the URL is not
    > directly usable in a browser window.
    >
    > The tilde gets translated to a dollar sign on receiving
    > mail, not on transmitting, as verified in tests sending
    > tilde's to non-VMS machines on the local net. The tilde
    > characters arrive just fine and are displayed correctly
    > on those machines.
    >
    > I'm shocked that VMS would do something like this.
    >
    >
    > THE REQUEST:
    >
    > How did this logic come about? Is there some VMS logical
    > that we can set to prevent this from happening? I had a
    > quick scan of the online VMS Mail documentation and found
    > no reference. So far, other than confirming the fault,
    > I can't find anyone here who knows anything about it.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a


    I reproduced this easily on my V8.3 system.

    The original data is intact in the mail file; only the display is
    affected. If you EXTRACT the message, the tildes are still there.

    There is a filtering routine that removes "bad" characters from the
    display, replacing them with "$". The comments indicate it is to
    prevent escape sequences from changing screen attributes, etc.

    In 2005, the filter was modified to add "}", "~", and some other
    characters to the set that is replaced with "$" on display. The stated
    reason was that some terminal emulators (which ones not specified) were
    finding escape sequences when "}" was used in certain sequences.

    Mail unfortunately does not know how to account for different terminal
    types. It applies the same output filtering for any terminal.

    In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~". It
    has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1

    This change has been made, but it appears that no MAIL patch has been
    issued that contains the change. The logical name works in V8.3-1H1
    (Integrity only).

    If you have support, I think you should ask for a patch containing the
    MAIL$FILTER support. If you go this route, it might save time if you
    refer to SCT #5991, which is the internal note that contains some
    details.

    -- Robert

  8. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Fred Bach wrote:
    >
    > Dear comp.os.vms,
    >
    > This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >
    > Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >
    > On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    > and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    > me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >
    > We are running
    > Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    > 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >
    > SYNOPSIS:
    >
    > VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.

    [snip]

    Do you have a support contract? Can you open a case on ITRC?

    Please send privately to Sue, also. That may get it some attention ata
    higher level, though it may take a few days longer.

    David J Dachtera
    (formerly dba) DJE Systems

  9. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Robert Deininger wrote:

    > This change has been made, but it appears that no MAIL patch has been
    > issued that contains the change. The logical name works in V8.3-1H1
    > (Integrity only).


    It should have been a patch for the 1 or 2 important customers that
    requested this tilde filtering instead of widespread deployment of this
    unwanted feature.

    Doesn't really matter now. We've been told so many times that mail
    wouldn't be upgraded to handle modern emails and that we shoudl switch
    to another platform that many of us have heeded those calls.

  10. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article , Robert Deininger writes:
    >In article , Fred Bach wrote:
    >
    >> Dear comp.os.vms,
    >>
    >> This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    >> been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >>
    >> Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >>
    >> On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    >> and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    >> me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >>
    >> We are running
    >> Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    >> 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >>
    >> SYNOPSIS:
    >>
    >> VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    >> the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    >>
    >> I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    >> translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    >> message into other text characters.
    >>
    >> In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    >> makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    >> effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.
    >>
    >>
    >> THE DETAILS:
    >>
    >> Some screen copy:
    >>
    >> > OPS_DEVBN2> mail
    >> >
    >> > MAIL> send
    >> > To: ops
    >> > CC:
    >> > Subj: Tilde Test
    >> > Enter your message below. Press CTRL/Z when complete, or CTRL/C to quit:
    >> > ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    >> > ~~~~~~
    >> > asdfghjk
    >> > ASDFHJK;
    >> >
    >> >
    >> > MAIL> SEL/NEW
    >> > %MAIL-I-SELECTED, 1 message selected
    >> >
    >> > MAIL> READ
    >> >
    >> >
    >> > #1 13-MAR-2008 14:21:10.89 NEWMAIL
    >> > From: DEVCLU::OPS
    >> > To: OPS
    >> > CC: OPS
    >> > Subj: Tilde Test
    >> >
    >> > $ $ $ $ $
    >> > $$$$$$
    >> > asdfghjk
    >> > ASDFHJK;
    >> >
    >> > MAIL>

    >>
    >> PLEASE notice how VMS Mail translates the tilde character
    >> "~" into a dollar sign. This means that when I receive a
    >> URL with a tilde in it (very common in expressing users'
    >> private spaces at a particular domain) the URL is not
    >> directly usable in a browser window.
    >>
    >> The tilde gets translated to a dollar sign on receiving
    >> mail, not on transmitting, as verified in tests sending
    >> tilde's to non-VMS machines on the local net. The tilde
    >> characters arrive just fine and are displayed correctly
    >> on those machines.
    >>
    >> I'm shocked that VMS would do something like this.
    >>
    >>
    >> THE REQUEST:
    >>
    >> How did this logic come about? Is there some VMS logical
    >> that we can set to prevent this from happening? I had a
    >> quick scan of the online VMS Mail documentation and found
    >> no reference. So far, other than confirming the fault,
    >> I can't find anyone here who knows anything about it.
    >>
    >> Thanks.
    >>
    >> . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a

    >
    >I reproduced this easily on my V8.3 system.
    >
    >The original data is intact in the mail file; only the display is
    >affected. If you EXTRACT the message, the tildes are still there.
    >
    >There is a filtering routine that removes "bad" characters from the
    >display, replacing them with "$". The comments indicate it is to
    >prevent escape sequences from changing screen attributes, etc.
    >
    >In 2005, the filter was modified to add "}", "~", and some other
    >characters to the set that is replaced with "$" on display. The stated
    >reason was that some terminal emulators (which ones not specified) were
    >finding escape sequences when "}" was used in certain sequences.
    >
    >Mail unfortunately does not know how to account for different terminal
    >types. It applies the same output filtering for any terminal.
    >
    >In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    >is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~". It
    >has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    > $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1
    >
    >This change has been made, but it appears that no MAIL patch has been
    >issued that contains the change. The logical name works in V8.3-1H1
    >(Integrity only).
    >
    >If you have support, I think you should ask for a patch containing the
    >MAIL$FILTER support. If you go this route, it might save time if you
    >refer to SCT #5991, which is the internal note that contains some
    >details.


    The lows HP will stoop to force people over to integrity.

    I recall a number of MAIL issues over the years. I used to run an old
    copy of MAIL.EXE because of such issues. I suppose this could be fixed
    running the V8.2 MAIL.EXE too. I'll check later.

    As for the "logical"... I would prefer it have been some option in the
    mail profile.
    --
    VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM

    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"

    http://tmesis.com/drat.html

  11. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article <47d9b9b3$0$5604$607ed4bc@cv.net>, VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG writes:
    >In article , Fred Bach writes:
    >>
    >>Dear comp.os.vms,
    >>
    >> This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    >> been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    >>
    >> Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    >>
    >> On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    >> and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    >> me how you set up your VMS mail.
    >>
    >> We are running
    >> Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    >> 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    >>
    >>SYNOPSIS:
    >>
    >> VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    >> the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    >>
    >> I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    >> translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    >> message into other text characters.
    >>
    >> In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    >> makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    >> effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.

    >
    >Wow! Confirmed!
    >
    >Not on V7.3-2 but V8.3 does exhibit your reported behavior.
    >

    Interesting. I confirmed it with VMS MAIL on an Alpha VMS 8.3 system
    (it doesn't happen on my other VMS 7.3-1 systems).

    #1 14-MAR-2008 11:01:13.94
    MAIL
    From: ::SYSTEM
    To: SYSTEM
    CC:
    Subj: test $

    $$$$$


    However I have PMDF mail on this system so I looked at the same mail message
    (which had been sent using VMS Mail) using PMDF MAIL

    then I see

    Date: Fri, 14 Mar 2008 11:01:13 +0000 (GMT)
    From: "::SYSTEM"@mdx.ac.uk
    Subject: test ~
    To: SYSTEM@mdx.ac.uk
    X-VMS-To: SYSTEM
    X-VMS-Cc:

    ~~~~~


    So it looks like the ~ is actually stored in the mail file and it is just
    VMS Mail's displaying of the message on VMS 8.3 which is causing the problem.




    David Webb
    Security team leader
    CCSS
    Middlesex University


    >--
    >VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM
    >
    > "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"
    >
    >http://tmesis.com/drat.html


  12. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article <47da5945$0$25044$607ed4bc@cv.net>,
    VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG wrote:

    > In article ,
    > Robert Deininger writes:
    > >In article , Fred Bach wrote:
    > >
    > >> Dear comp.os.vms,
    > >>
    > >> This one caught me by surprise. Apparently the problem has
    > >> been around for at least a year, looking back into old mail.
    > >>
    > >> Let's hope none of you are reading this on VMS Mail. ;-)
    > >>
    > >> On the other hand, if you are reading this on VMS mail,
    > >> and if the following text all reads correctly, please tell
    > >> me how you set up your VMS mail.
    > >>
    > >> We are running
    > >> Process Software MultiNet V5.1 Rev A-X, AlphaServer DS10
    > >> 617 MHz, OpenVMS AXP V8.3
    > >>
    > >> SYNOPSIS:
    > >>
    > >> VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > >> the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.
    > >>
    > >> I think it is REALLY BAD FORM for an email program to
    > >> translate any legitimate incoming characters in a text
    > >> message into other text characters.
    > >>
    > >> In fact, unless we can turn this off, this 'feature'
    > >> makes me think that VMS Mail has, sadly, at last become
    > >> effectively unusable as a reliable communications tool.
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> THE DETAILS:
    > >>
    > >> Some screen copy:
    > >>
    > >> > OPS_DEVBN2> mail
    > >> >
    > >> > MAIL> send
    > >> > To: ops
    > >> > CC:
    > >> > Subj: Tilde Test
    > >> > Enter your message below. Press CTRL/Z when complete, or CTRL/C to quit:
    > >> > ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    > >> > ~~~~~~
    > >> > asdfghjk
    > >> > ASDFHJK;
    > >> >
    > >> >
    > >> > MAIL> SEL/NEW
    > >> > %MAIL-I-SELECTED, 1 message selected
    > >> >
    > >> > MAIL> READ
    > >> >
    > >> >
    > >> > #1 13-MAR-2008 14:21:10.89 NEWMAIL
    > >> > From: DEVCLU::OPS
    > >> > To: OPS
    > >> > CC: OPS
    > >> > Subj: Tilde Test
    > >> >
    > >> > $ $ $ $ $
    > >> > $$$$$$
    > >> > asdfghjk
    > >> > ASDFHJK;
    > >> >
    > >> > MAIL>
    > >>
    > >> PLEASE notice how VMS Mail translates the tilde character
    > >> "~" into a dollar sign. This means that when I receive a
    > >> URL with a tilde in it (very common in expressing users'
    > >> private spaces at a particular domain) the URL is not
    > >> directly usable in a browser window.
    > >>
    > >> The tilde gets translated to a dollar sign on receiving
    > >> mail, not on transmitting, as verified in tests sending
    > >> tilde's to non-VMS machines on the local net. The tilde
    > >> characters arrive just fine and are displayed correctly
    > >> on those machines.
    > >>
    > >> I'm shocked that VMS would do something like this.
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> THE REQUEST:
    > >>
    > >> How did this logic come about? Is there some VMS logical
    > >> that we can set to prevent this from happening? I had a
    > >> quick scan of the online VMS Mail documentation and found
    > >> no reference. So far, other than confirming the fault,
    > >> I can't find anyone here who knows anything about it.
    > >>
    > >> Thanks.
    > >>
    > >> . fred bach . music at triumf dot c a

    > >
    > >I reproduced this easily on my V8.3 system.
    > >
    > >The original data is intact in the mail file; only the display is
    > >affected. If you EXTRACT the message, the tildes are still there.
    > >
    > >There is a filtering routine that removes "bad" characters from the
    > >display, replacing them with "$". The comments indicate it is to
    > >prevent escape sequences from changing screen attributes, etc.
    > >
    > >In 2005, the filter was modified to add "}", "~", and some other
    > >characters to the set that is replaced with "$" on display. The stated
    > >reason was that some terminal emulators (which ones not specified) were
    > >finding escape sequences when "}" was used in certain sequences.
    > >
    > >Mail unfortunately does not know how to account for different terminal
    > >types. It applies the same output filtering for any terminal.
    > >
    > >In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    > >is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~". It
    > >has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    > > $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1
    > >
    > >This change has been made, but it appears that no MAIL patch has been
    > >issued that contains the change. The logical name works in V8.3-1H1
    > >(Integrity only).
    > >
    > >If you have support, I think you should ask for a patch containing the
    > >MAIL$FILTER support. If you go this route, it might save time if you
    > >refer to SCT #5991, which is the internal note that contains some
    > >details.

    >
    > The lows HP will stoop to force people over to integrity.


    !!!!????

    Did you forget to type a smiley or something?

    Please put away your tinfoil hat for a moment. Step away from c.o.v.
    and go outside for some fresh air. There's no anti-alpha conspiracy
    here.

    Mail is "broken" in all releases that shipped since the first change and
    before the second change, on Alpha and Integrity. If V8.3-1H1 had been
    shipped for Alpha, it would have the second change, just like Integrity.
    Since V8.3-1H1 was mostly to support new hardware (Integrity systems and
    I/O adapters), it wasn't released for Alpha. The next release on both
    platforms will have the second change. Great conspiracy!

    The Mail image with the second change is just sitting there waiting, for
    several different VMS releases, both Alpha and Integrity. Evidently
    NOBODY has ever asked for a fix to be shipped. That includes the
    engineer who made both of the changes I described above.

    My expectation is that any customer who requests the fix will get it in
    short order, and if there's a bit of demand, MAIL patch kits will go on
    the release queue.

    > I recall a number of MAIL issues over the years. I used to run an old
    > copy of MAIL.EXE because of such issues. I suppose this could be fixed
    > running the V8.2 MAIL.EXE too. I'll check later.
    >
    > As for the "logical"... I would prefer it have been some option in the
    > mail profile.


    The engineer considered solutions with wider scope, and deliberately
    chose a process-based one. The type of terminal (or emulator) is key to
    the need for removing the offending characters. Neither the system-wide
    mail parameter nor the username-specific mail profile is well matched to
    the need.

    -- Robert

  13. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    On Mar 14, 7:33*am, Robert Deininger
    wrote:
    > In article <47da5945$0$25044$607ed...@cv.net>,
    > *VAXman- *@SendSpamHere.ORG wrote:


    > > >In article , Fred Bach wrote:
    > > >> Dear comp.os.vms,

    :
    > > >> * *VMS Mail translates tilde characters ("~") in the body of
    > > >> * *the mail, into dollar sign characters for incoming mail.


    Yikes. Thanks for the heads up.

    > > >In 2005, the filter was modified to add "}", "~", and some other
    > > >characters to the set that is replaced with "$" on display. *


    What were they thinking? Were they thinking ?
    Honestly, since when did a lone twiddle turn evil !?

    > > >The stated
    > > >reason was that some terminal emulators (which ones not specified) were
    > > >finding escape sequences when "}" was used in certain sequences.


    And VMS bows to that?! And does not bother to indicate which
    emulator?!
    :-(.



    > > >In 2006, the filtering was changed again. *If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    > > >is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~". *It
    > > >has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    > > > *$ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1


    They broke it. The original behavious was correct.
    The default should be no extra filter.

    It is 'nice' that OpenVMS is willing to accomadate a broken terminal
    emulator through logical for those bother by that, but that should be
    optional.

    > > >The logical name works in V8.3-1H1 (Integrity only).


    > > The lows HP will stoop to force people over to integrity.

    >
    > !!!!????
    >
    > Did you forget to type a smiley or something?


    Honestly Brian...

    Anyway, just picking up an old MAIL.EXE UI should fix this right?

    fwiw,
    Hein.


  14. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Given the fact that VMSMAIL already filters escape sequences to prevent
    mail senders from changing your terminal settings, I don't think this
    was unreasonable behavior. After all, contrast this thinking with the
    Microsoft engineers who never considered that allowing people to launch
    applications by double clicking on attachments was tantamount to handing
    control of your PC to whoever sent you a mail message ! At least the VMS
    people were considering the possibilities of malicious intent even in
    this relatively innocent era.

    As has been pointed out, actually changing the data stored in the mail
    folders would have been much much worse.

    > In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    > is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~".


    Of course, any such change should have had a
    "return-to-original-behavior" type setting incorporated immediately, but
    at least it was done.

    > It has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    > $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1


    I can't understand the thinking here. Surely it would have been just as
    easily to query LNM$FILE_DEV as LNM$PROCESS ?

    Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).

    > The logical name works in V8.3-1H1 (Integrity only).


    And one would assume in subsequent OpenVMS Alpha versions.

    ---------------------------------------------------------
    Tom Wade | EMail: tee dot wade at eurokom dot ie
    EuroKom | Tel: +353 (1) 296-9696
    A2, Nutgrove Office Park | Fax: +353 (1) 296-9697
    Rathfarnham | Disclaimer: This is not a disclaimer
    Dublin 14 | Tip: "Friends don't let friends do Unix !"
    Ireland

  15. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Tom Wade wrote:

    > Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    > MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    > SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    > activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).


    Why not set it as you want it to be system wide in the sylogin in
    the first place. What is won with the first MAIL_FILTER logical ?

    Jan-Erik.

  16. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article , Tom Wade writes:
    >Given the fact that VMSMAIL already filters escape sequences to prevent
    >mail senders from changing your terminal settings, I don't think this
    >was unreasonable behavior.


    Escape sequences yes but ~ and } are ASCII printable characters. I'd really
    like to know what terminal emulator acts on printable characters by doing
    anything other than just displaying them.


    David Webb
    Security team leader
    CCSS
    Middlesex University

    >After all, contrast this thinking with the
    >Microsoft engineers who never considered that allowing people to launch
    >applications by double clicking on attachments was tantamount to handing
    >control of your PC to whoever sent you a mail message ! At least the VMS
    >people were considering the possibilities of malicious intent even in
    >this relatively innocent era.
    >
    >As has been pointed out, actually changing the data stored in the mail
    >folders would have been much much worse.
    >
    >> In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    >> is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~".

    >
    >Of course, any such change should have had a
    >"return-to-original-behavior" type setting incorporated immediately, but
    > at least it was done.
    >
    >> It has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    >> $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1

    >
    >I can't understand the thinking here. Surely it would have been just as
    >easily to query LNM$FILE_DEV as LNM$PROCESS ?
    >
    >Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    >MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    >SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    >activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).
    >
    >> The logical name works in V8.3-1H1 (Integrity only).

    >
    >And one would assume in subsequent OpenVMS Alpha versions.
    >
    >---------------------------------------------------------
    >Tom Wade | EMail: tee dot wade at eurokom dot ie
    >EuroKom | Tel: +353 (1) 296-9696
    >A2, Nutgrove Office Park | Fax: +353 (1) 296-9697
    >Rathfarnham | Disclaimer: This is not a disclaimer
    >Dublin 14 | Tip: "Friends don't let friends do Unix !"
    >Ireland


  17. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    On Mar 14, 9:58 am, Jan-Erik Söderholm
    wrote:
    > Tom Wade wrote:
    > > Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    > > MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    > > SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    > > activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).

    >
    > Why not set it as you want it to be system wide in the sylogin in
    > the first place. What is won with the first MAIL_FILTER logical ?
    >
    > Jan-Erik.


    Seconded. I thought the whole point of having process, job, group, and
    system logical names and the different access modes is that you can
    define a global value in the system (or cluster) table and override
    that as necessary with the process, job, and group tables. What is
    gained by limiting this to the process table? You can still override
    the global setting with process logical names, you get the idea.

    AEF

  18. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    AEF wrote:
    > On Mar 14, 9:58 am, Jan-Erik Söderholm
    > wrote:
    >> Tom Wade wrote:
    >>> Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    >>> MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    >>> SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    >>> activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).

    >> Why not set it as you want it to be system wide in the sylogin in
    >> the first place. What is won with the first MAIL_FILTER logical ?
    >>
    >> Jan-Erik.

    >
    > Seconded. I thought the whole point of having process, job, group, and
    > system logical names and the different access modes is that you can
    > define a global value in the system (or cluster) table and override
    > that as necessary with the process, job, and group tables. What is
    > gained by limiting this to the process table? You can still override
    > the global setting with process logical names, you get the idea.
    >
    > AEF


    That was not was I wrote. I asked about the suggestion to first
    create one logical i system table, then "copy" that logical in the
    SYLOGIN to the process table. Why not create it in the first place
    in the process table in the SYLOGICAL ?

    Having MAIL.EXE to read the system table is another issue.

    Jan-Erik.

  19. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    Jan-Erik Söderholm wrote:
    > AEF wrote:
    >> On Mar 14, 9:58 am, Jan-Erik Söderholm
    >> wrote:
    >>> Tom Wade wrote:
    >>>> Of course, this is easily worked around. Define a SYSTEM wide logical
    >>>> MAIL_FILTER to be the way you want it, and have a DEFINE command in
    >>>> SYS$SYLOGIN copy this settting to a process logical MAIL$FILTER before
    >>>> activating the user's own LOGIN.COM (thus allowing him to override).
    >>> Why not set it as you want it to be system wide in the sylogin in
    >>> the first place. What is won with the first MAIL_FILTER logical ?
    >>>
    >>> Jan-Erik.

    >>
    >> Seconded. I thought the whole point of having process, job, group, and
    >> system logical names and the different access modes is that you can
    >> define a global value in the system (or cluster) table and override
    >> that as necessary with the process, job, and group tables. What is
    >> gained by limiting this to the process table? You can still override
    >> the global setting with process logical names, you get the idea.
    >>
    >> AEF

    >
    > That was not was I wrote. I asked about the suggestion to first
    > create one logical i system table, then "copy" that logical in the
    > SYLOGIN to the process table. Why not create it in the first place
    > in the process table in the SYLOGICAL ?
    >
    > Having MAIL.EXE to read the system table is another issue.
    >
    > Jan-Erik.


    Several errors there.... :-) Edited version :

    That was not what I wrote. I asked about the suggestion to first
    create one logical i the system table, then "copy" that logical in
    the SYLOGIN to the process table. Why not create it in the first
    place in the process table using SYLOGIN.COM ? I do not see the
    use of that first system wide logical.

    Having MAIL.EXE to read the system table is another issue.

    Jan-Erik.

  20. Re: VMS Mail translates incoming tilde character into a dollar sign.

    In article , Robert Deininger writes:
    >
    > In 2006, the filtering was changed again. If logical name MAIL$FILTER
    > is defined to "1", the old filtering is restored w.r.t. "}" and "~". It
    > has to be a process logical name, and it has to have value "1":
    > $ DEFINE/PROCESS MAIL$FILTER 1
    >


    It has to be a process logical? That's awfull. I put all my
    settings in my job table so they only have to exist once for all
    my tasks, whether in the current process or in one I spawned while
    logging in.

    So if I want this, I'll have to set it in my detached process before
    I spawn any subprocesses and let it tramp around all those process
    tables. Back in the early 80's we recognised that tramp data was an
    indication of poor design.


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