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Browse Prior Art Database

Management of attachments in email systems

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000032451D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Nov-05
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Nov-05
Document File: 2 page(s) / 40K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Approach for associating an email attachment which has been removed and stored in a file system with an original email with which the attachment was sent.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

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Management of attachments in email systems

With Lotus* Notes and other similar email systems it is possible to manage note attachments within the product or to detach them to a file system. If they are managed within the email system the attachments are held in an internal format in a database in the case of Lotus Notes. To use the attachment outside of the email it would then have to be detached or launched. When that happens the connection with the original email is lost. It is simply a file on a file system and it is not obvious that the file was received in an email and that it may other information associated with it, like how to use it or why it was sent.

    This article describes an approach for allowing the attachment to access the original note when the attachment is selected in the file system as opposed to having to access it within the email system (which is known technology). This approach provides additional function to the user and improves the usability of an email product.

    There is an existing facility called AttachTracker from AddOnMail. This extends the properties associated with file once it has been detached and allows the user to see who sent the email with that attachment. This gives the user some idea of where the attachment came from but does not put the attachment in context. I could have an attachment called a.zip. for example. Knowing that it came from Fred Smith@abc.com does not necessarily make me any wiser as to why the file was sent. What I want to do is to have the capability to see the email and understand exactly why the attachment was sent and I want to do this while in the file system rather than having to go into my email system and search for the attachment.

    Once a file is detached a unique id is given to the file and held in the file metadata. This unique id is then accessed subsequently to 'reconnect' the email and attachment. The unqiue idea that the attachment is being acc...