html code fixes

[Now Fixed] Email Issue: © Copyright symbol breaking in Hotmail

Update – 26 April 2012

As mentioned by Brian Thies in the comments below, Hotmail have now released an update to their platform that fixes this bug, therefore designers don’t need to take any action to update their code. We’ve run a few tests through Hotmail and the symbols are now being displayed as normal.

We’ve noticed a peculiar rendering issue that’s just appeared in Hotmail – the © ASCII code used to insert a copyright symbol loses all formatting. We’ve run some tests in various live browsers, and the issue seems to appear in IE, Firefox and Chrome/Safari. It appears that the symbols are actually being replaced by Hotmail’s own emoji images, for example:  .

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HTML Email Full Page Background Fix (for Outlook & Webmail)

Note – we now have a better fix for this issue, which we recommend over the below fix. We’ve kept the content on this page for reference only.

Outlook 2007 supporting a full page background image

Since Outlook 2007 was released, support for background images in email has been problematic. Whilst you can use the <body> tag to successfully specify a full page background image in Outlook, many webmail clients will ignore this. This has often meant that both background images and colour are also specified using a full width table, to ensure support in webmail clients.

One issue that occurs from this technique, however, is that Outlook will also render the background colour from that full width table, but not the background image, meaning that the solid background colour will display above any full page background image specified on the <body> tag in Outlook.

This fix allows you so specify a full width background image that displays in both Outlook and webmail clients, and will fall back to a solid background colour when viewed in any email client with images disabled.

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HTML Email Issue: loss of backgrounds in Hotmail (includes fix)

Various email clients have different quirks and html challenges – in our HTML email coding section we document these and detail any workarounds if available.

Email Client Affected:

This issue affects the new version of Hotmail.


Hotmail have introduced a code in their rendering engine that effectively removes the background image or colour properties from ‘wrapper’ full width tables. Full width tables are commonly used in html emails to implement background formatting and to center the main email, and are specified as 100% wide.

Effectively the new Hotmail code forces the maximum width of the email to be widest part of the email defined in pixels, which may be either an image or a table.


Whilst the width of the wrapping table could be forced out to a certain width (eg. 1000px), this would cause other rendering issues in other platforms (and it would be pretty impractical). Instead, a small CSS code snippet can be used to force the width back out to 100% – simply add this code at the top of the email HTML code:

<STYLE type=”text/css”>
{ width: 100%;}
{width: 100%;}


July 2010