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Email Delay

I'm trying to cure a problem my parents are having with their Win98se system. They can't actually send out an email unless the system is shut down and restarted. Once they log-on again, the AVG email scanner shows the message being transfered. Also there's always an exact 5 hours difference between when the email was initally 'sent' out and the date/time that appears on the received message.
They are useing Thunderbird and Firefox, but the same things happened when Outlook Express and Internet Explorer were employed.
AVG, Spybot S&D, Ad-Aware SE and Zonealarm are all up-to-date on the 256MB memory, 40 GB HD dial-up system.
Any ideas were the answer may be?

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E.P., It Sounds Like An ISP Issue...

In reply to: Email Delay

You didn't mention the ISP which your parents are using but some of the smaller ones only send out messages on a set schedule..That could be the issue with the 5 hour time delay. You don't mention where the message is being received but that could be something as simple as and incorrect clock setting.

In regards to the need for restarting to send out the message...have you tried installing the newest driver for the dial-up modem or ethernet card? Is there a problem with their internet connection? Does it drop the connection easily?

Hope this helps and let us know more.


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It Sounds Like An ISP Issue...

In reply to: E.P., It Sounds Like An ISP Issue...

They recently switched from Access4Less to All2Easy for their ISP; problem occured with both; the connection rarely drops.
I did'nt know the ISPs may not send out messages except on a schedule, hmm.
We both use WebTime to sync system clocks to an atomic clock (in our time zone). The 5 hour difference baffles me .
They have an old HP, but I'll investigate if there is a newer driver for the modem.
I was kind of hoping the problem was some Window's setting I had overlooked.

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Maybe, but not likely for the reason suggested

In reply to: E.P., It Sounds Like An ISP Issue...

I have never heard of an ISP holding mail to send it all out at regularly scheduled times. But if they did hold mail until certain scheduled times, the difference would not always be exactly 5 hours; some mail might be delayed that, other mail, arriving later might, night be delayed 4 hours, 26 minutes, and others might be delayed less than an hour, depending on when it was received. There would be absolutely no reason for an ISP to delay every message the same length of time; this would remove any possible advantage of batching the mails.

Actually, the mail probably is not delayed at all; the receiving time stamp is more likely in error. To check this, have your parents send you a message, then check your mailbox a little later; I?ll bet the message is there, but with an erroneous time stamp showing it arrived much later than it did. If it isn?t present, keep checking periodically until it is there. It then would be interesting to check the Internet headers to see which servers it went through at what time, and how their clocks were set. If there really is a delay, it will be apparent here just where it occurred.

The exactly 5-hour difference in the two time stamps is a major clue. While your profile doesn?t give your location, I would guess your current time is Central Daylight.
Some Internet servers have their clocks on local time and some, such as my ISP?s POP3 server, are on Zulu time (i.e., Greenwich Mean Time or Universal Time). Universal time is exactly 5 hours later than CDT. So it seems as if the ?sent? timestamp may be local CDT, while the ?received? time stamp is Universal Time.

As an example, here is the tracking of an e-mail I received today. It was sent via Hotmail at 4:35:31 (16:35:31) MDT. A Hotmail server received it from the mail pickup service at 15:35:33 ?0700 (i.e., 3:35:33 PM Pacific Daylight Time) and forwarded it to my ISP?s server, where it was received at 22:35:33 +0000 (i.e., 10:35:33 PM Universal Time); this is when it went into my mailbox, and this is the receiving timestamp. However, before it appears in Outlook on my desktop, the UT is converted to my local time, 4:35:33 PM MDT. (Two seconds after it was sent).

This is a real puzzler. It would seem, then, that the receiving time conversion must occur at the receiving end. But apparently this problem occurs with everyone your parents send mail to, no doubt using different ISPs and different e-mail clients. I also assume that these recipients have no such trouble with e-mail coming from other senders. If all this is true, then it must be associated with your parent?s mail, but I haven?t figured out a scenario for the received time stamp to be in error based on an originating error.

However, if the receiving time stamp is correct, then the ?sent? time must be wrong, 5-hours early, if it is to indicate a 5-hour differential. This should be readily apparent. If you receive a message stamped about 9AM, then the ?sent? time must be about 4 AM. If you know your parents wouldn?t be up at this time, then the original time must be wrong, and the problem is with your parent?s computer or ISP.

Please perform the test I suggested in the second paragraph and let me know the results. Also, please verify that the problem occurs with all recipients, and that the problem occurs with no mail other than your parents. Then we may be able to track the problem further.

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Maybe, but not likely for the reason suggested

In reply to: Maybe, but not likely for the reason suggested

El Alquimista,
Thanks for the info. It appears the delayed sending and wrong date stamp are unrelated issues.
I had them send an email at 9:30 Tuesday night to three of my accounts; the Hotmail and ISP issued email accounts showed the correct 'sent' time, however my main MSN account showed the 'sent' time as 1:30 a.m. Wednesday (4 hours later; not 5 hours as I had indicated before; sorry, even simple math can be a challange after a long day). Both our systems show a time zone of : (GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada) , in Window's Date/Time Properties.
Later, I sent a message from my Hotmail account to the MSN address, and it also showed the 4 hour difference; so it's most likely some setting with that account.
My parents said that although the message appeared immediately in the Thunderbird "Sent" folder, the AVG Email Scanner didn't show the transfer process initiated until after they logged off the internet, then logged on again. I've looked in the AVG settings but haven't discovered anything to account for this delay.
I can live with the wrong time, but it's inconvenient for them to send mail this way.

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IMO, contact the "Site manager" for . . .

In reply to: Maybe, but not likely for the reason suggested

however my main MSN account showed the 'sent' time as 1:30 a.m. Wednesday (4 hours later; not 5 hours as I had indicated before; sorry, even simple math can be a challange after a long day).
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In reply to: Email Delay

Time Control Panel>Date and Time, are you set to the correct time zone ? Just a thought. It may not have any effects.

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