Spaces missing between words when replying to HTML email



Message Compose Window
7 years ago
4 years ago


(Reporter: mikedoo3, Unassigned)


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(Not tracked)



(1 attachment)



7 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 5.1; rv:2.0.1) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/4.0.1
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv: Gecko/20110414 Thunderbird/3.1.10

Click Reply on an email, spaces are missing between some of the words.
I am viewing the email as "Original HTML" (View -> Message Body -> Original HTML).  I am composing as plain text (important for example below to work)

The problem started in Thunderbird 3.1.5.  Thunderbird 3.1.4 and less do not have the problem.  Miramar also has the problem.

Put everything between the dashes in a file, say test.eml
Open test.eml in Thunderbird and then click Reply.

In Thunderbird 3.1.4 and earlier, I see the text
Today, you can conveniently

In Thunderbird 3.1.5+, I see the text
Today, you canconveniently

Content-Type: text/html;
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
Subject: Test
From: Mike
To: Mike

<P DIR=3DLTR><SPAN LANG=3D"en-us"><FONT FACE=3D"Calibri">Today, you =
can</FONT></SPAN><SPAN LANG=3D"en-us"> <FONT =

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Follow the details
2. Make sure you view as Original HTML
3. Make sure you compose as plain text

Actual Results:  
Space missing between words

Expected Results:  
No space missing

Comment 1

6 years ago
This is still happening.  Is this not an issue?  I found that it mainly affects emails originating from Microsoft Outlook.  I know the exact code change between Thunderbird 3.1.4 and Thunderbird 3.1.5 that causes this.

The file mozilla/content/base/src/nsPlainTextSerializer.cpp

/* Container elements are always block elements, so we shouldn't
   output any whitespace immediately after the container tag even if
   there's extra whitespace there because the HTML is pretty-printed
   or something.  To ensure that happens, tell the serializer we're
   already in whitespace so it won't output more. */
mInWhitespace = PR_TRUE;

This statement right here causes the issue.  If I set mInWhitespace to PR_FALSE right there, it works properly for my example.  I don't know the code base enough to tell why that is in there, it just seems to me that since spaces are removed when I reply to some of my emails, this is an issue.  Can someone please reply.

Comment 2

6 years ago
I can confirm this started (probably) from TB v14 and is still happening on TB 16.0.1.

See also:

This bug has also been reported as Bug 778547.

Please address it!
Created attachment 675978 [details]
Testcase1.eml (from comment 0)

Here's the testcase from comment 0.
Confirming the current wrong behaviour per comment 0 using testcase attachment 675978 [details] on TB 16.0.1 on WinXP.
Hold Shift while clicking reply button to ensure plaintext reply.
Afaics, there's nothing wrong with that space in HTML source between "can" and "conveniently", and it displays correctly in message reader, but it disappears in the plaintext reply so you then have "canconveniently" (this bug).

Perhaps a dupe of Bug 645771, but I understand that in Bug 645771, spaces disappear *after* sending, while in this bug 662966, they disappear already upon reply, in composition editor. This bug here is easily reproducable, while it's not clear if bug 645771 has been reproduced yet (albeit I have no doubt editor /does/ nasty things...).

Tentative search for related bugs (too narrow)
:thun,mail su:spac su:reply,forward,send,compos,edit;list_id=4802549
(In reply to Nick Milas from comment #2)
> Please address it!

Hello Milas, your best bet is to provide patches yourself if you are a developer.
Mozilla is removing paid manpower from TB project.
So we now work more or less as a community of volunteers (of which I am one).
And there are plenty bugs of same or higher importance than this one.
Finally, this is Open source software so it comes with less obligations.
All the more, we appreciate your support, so thanks for the pointers of comment 2.
Ever confirmed: true

Comment 6

6 years ago

Sorry, I am not a developer :(

I know Mozilla is removing paid manpower, but, according to Jb Piacentino: "Mozilla will no longer focus on developing innovations for Thunderbird but will keep it safe and stable", so I would expect they at least provide bug fixes (which is what makes TB safe and stable).

Anyway, I'll try to create and post a reproducible test case.

Comment 7

6 years ago
I've provided a test case with Bug 778547 ( 

A reproducible test case for this bug has already been submitted.
I am still seeing this (Thunderbird 33.0, beta channel) with email from Yahoo Mail on Android.

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