Auto-response email replies to Digests are processed as new topic

(Michael Downey) #1

Steps to reproduce:

  1. Activate an inbox auto-response (out of office message) in Exchange/Outlook.
  2. Receive the periodic Digest email from Discourse.

Expected behavior:

  • Any message sent back as a reply is not processed by the incoming email queue.

Actual behavior:

  • The reply is processed as a new topic, e.g.:

Email reply-to for digests
(Jeff Atwood) #2

Weird, why would replies to the digest email be processed, ever? Is this based on your custom per-category settings to allow incoming mail @downey?

@techapj can you have a look? Digests should not have a reply key.

(Michael Downey) #3

It’s not so much that digests should or shouldn’t have a reply key (they shouldn’t, and don’t appear to) but rather the fact that Digests should be sending the right email headers to avoid triggering auto replies for out of office messages.

See Detecting Outlook autoreply/out-of-office emails - Stack Overflow et. al Google searches for things like “suppress auto response with mail headers”.

As an aside, it’s true, the digests DO seem to come from the notification email address which is the same as our incoming email POP3 account. That IS the right behavior, because users want to see the mail from the same address they’re familiar with and that they use to send email in to Discourse.

This same problem happened again yesterday due to people being away for the US Thanksgiving holiday (with a different domain and different Exchange server). Not cool; people are getting things like personal phone numbers and email addresses posted as topics. :thumbsdown:

(Jeff Atwood) #4

So this is based on your specific Discourse settings that allow new topics to be created via incoming email?

(Michael Downey) #5

The incoming POP3 inbox address (e.g. is the same as the address that sends the notification, but that’s not actually the issue here.

The issues are:

  1. The digests seem to need something more than the Auto-Submitted: auto-generated that’s currently in the headers in order to convince Exchange to not send an auto-reply for “out of office” messages. There are a few theories floating around the Internet about what works best.
  2. The incoming email parser should throw out and NOT process any incoming email with auto-submitted: auto-generated in the header of what comes in. (The OOO messages seem to all have this header included in what’s sent.)

(Jeff Atwood) #6

ok @techapj could you add #2 to your list?

(Arpit Jalan) #7

Fixed :bug:

Out of office replies to Digests are still being processed as new topics
Better support for Auto-Submitted: auto-replied
(Jeff Atwood) #8

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