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Receiving duplicate emails


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#1
diggeryo

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I am writing this on behalf of my father who is experiencing this problem.

My Dad has Windows XP SP2 (with all latest updates). He is not on a network nor behind a router. He has Cox high speed Internet and accesses his email using Outlook Express.

Starting about a month ago, he started receiving duplicate email messages. He would get one email, and then some time would go by, and he would get the same one. This wouldn't happen to every message, though. And it wouldn't happen to only the same person nor would it happen only to people from the same domain (i.e. with only AOL, only Yahoo, only Comcast, etc.). Also, this isn't spam email he is getting. They are messages from legitimate contacts of his. These people have verified that they send him the original email, but not the duplicates he is receiving.

Since this is happening to email from more than one person and from different domains, I assumed the problem wasn't with the sender. Within the past 2 months or so, I installed AVG Anti-Virus on my Dad's computer, and it does check email before the email is downloaded. So I had him shut that down before checking his email next time. He shut it down, checked his email, but still received duplicates. So I figured the problem wasn't AVG. However, now he received one email duplicated about 30 times.

I then had the idea to have him check his email through his web mail access (through Internet Explorer) before checking his email through Outlook Express (he has the option checked in Outlook Express to delete his email on the server once it's downloaded). Anyway, the duplicate emails are listed in his web mail access, so I think that means the problem lies somewhere with Cox's server, or at the very least, somewhere not on my father's computer. If the problem were on his computer, the duplicates wouldn't be listed in his web mail. Agreed?

Anyway, I also noticed that without fail, this one email that has been duplicated over 30 times, and is still being duplicated, shows up in his inbox every 12 to 15 minutes. It's like clockwork.

Anyway, I called Cox and explained the situation to them. They swear the problem is something with my Dad's computer, and that I should run a virus sweep. Now I have my father's computer set to update the anti-virus and Spy Sweeper definitions daily and to run those sweeps daily, and nothing has been found. Even if something was found, though, I can't ignore the fact that there are duplicates listed in his web mail (meaning on the server itself) and not just in Outlook Express.

I have no idea what to do next. Cox swears the problem isn't them. And though I am computer literate, I am not really good with networks and whatnot, so I don't know how to respond to Cox saying the problem is something on my father's end.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

mike.
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#2
dsenette

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If the problem were on his computer, the duplicates wouldn't be listed in his web mail. Agreed?

there's the rub....there's virtually no chance that the web mail would show the duplicates if your dad's computer were to blame...outlook express won't dump things TO the mail server like that....it's EXTREMELY unlikely....but to be sure...have your dad quit using outlook...in fact...remove all of his settings from outlook that refer to the COX mail account...and have him use the web interface ONLY for a few weeks...if the duplicates continue...then you've got proof that it's not his PC
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#3
diggeryo

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thank you for the suggestion.
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