What is with MS Outlook's "winmail.dat" issue?

And can Google Mail (Gmail) handle it?

Sometimes when I get email from someone who is using Microsoft Outlook, the attachments are trapped in a "winmail.dat" file. In my case, I am using Novell Evolution on FreeBSD+XOrg+KDE, but I found many people with other email clients who are complaining about the problem too.

Today, as an experiment, I redirected an email containing a winmail.dat file to my Gmail account and also to another email address that I check with MS Outlook 2003. Of course, the latter showed the attachment (a PDF) fine. More-pleasing was the absence of winmail.dat in Gmail, as it handled the quirky Microsoft Outlook data with no problem.

Even though I am very busy today, I thought this experience would be worth sharing, rather than getting left behind in the To-Do pile...


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