Email with chinese writing saying No Program Allowed

Glenn Steen glenn.steen at
Wed Aug 26 14:08:27 IST 2009

2009/8/26 Paul <housey at>:
> Hi
> I have someone sending me an email with chinese writing in it.
> The problem is mailscanner blocks it as it thinks its a program - No
> programs allowed (msg-10911-621.txt)
> I ran the file command on the quarantined file and it does indeed think its
> an program
> [root at venice n7OEIC6o017365]# file msg-10911-621.txt
> msg-10911-621.txt: COM executable for DOS
> But it just contains chinese characters.
> This seems to be happening on quite a few emails with chinese writing in
> them - has anyone seen this before? or got a solution to stop them being
> blocked?
> Kind Regards
> Paul
Not only chinese, but basically any language containing non-ascii
characters can fall afoul of these "opportunistic" magic codes. Either
switch to using file -i, or edit/recompile your file commands magic
file... For more details, I suggest you do some mailing list

-- Glenn
email: glenn < dot > steen < at > gmail < dot > com
work: glenn < dot > steen < at > ap1 < dot > se

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