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jsc
Community Contributor

Is it correct, that attachement disappears when replying to a Canvas message from Outlook?

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As a teacher I send a message through Canvas to my students. It gives them a notification in their own email software, lets say Outlook in this case. A student replay to the notification (notifications@instructure.com) and attach a file.

I can read the answer in Canvas, but I cannot see the attachement. 

Am I doing something wrong? Any solution?

Thanks!

Jeppe

1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
ericwerth
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi  @jsc .  You are not missing anything.  This is a current limitation in how messages are passed back from external email clients to the Canvas Inbox.  I reviewed this response with a similar question, Responding with an attachment to a forwarded conversation.  It appears that the idea liked in this page, https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4746-attachments-to-inbox-from-external-email" modifiedtitle="..., is in product radar so perhaps this functionality will be added.  I don't know of a way around this other to request students not reply to messages forwarded to Outlook with attachments but to post those documents in Canvas directly.

Best wishes!

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4 Replies
ericwerth
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi  @jsc .  You are not missing anything.  This is a current limitation in how messages are passed back from external email clients to the Canvas Inbox.  I reviewed this response with a similar question, Responding with an attachment to a forwarded conversation.  It appears that the idea liked in this page, https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4746-attachments-to-inbox-from-external-email" modifiedtitle="..., is in product radar so perhaps this functionality will be added.  I don't know of a way around this other to request students not reply to messages forwarded to Outlook with attachments but to post those documents in Canvas directly.

Best wishes!

kblack
Community Champion

You are, alas, quite correct  @jsc ‌.  There was a Feature Idea created here, but there appears to be no movement on it.  However, as I noted in the second-to-last comment at the end of that Feature Idea, a recent Bug Fix that was posted in the December 7 Release Notes (scroll down to the the Notifications>Email Notification Attachments area) added a footer that should have pointed this out in the notification.  I have NOT yet seen this "in action," however, so I'm wondering if either you or the student spotted something in the notification.  They mention it's a footer, so the next question is whether the average user will even see it.  

kmeeusen
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi  @jsc 

I am going to ask the more obvious question, and perhaps I can advise you on an easier way to accomplish what you are intending to accomplish...............

Why are your students sending back an attachment?

If this is to fulfill the requirements of an assignment, the students could easily upload the file to an assignment. If they are doing this to provide needed documentation (our health career programs do this all the time (vaccination records, etc.)) and it is not part of a graded activity ,you could still create an assignment to act as a drop-box, and just give it a point value of zero.

Let me know if this helps,

Kelley

jsc
Community Contributor

Thank you for answering my question!

 @kblack ‌ One of the problems about this is exactly that you are not being notified, that your attachment is deleted along the way. So the students have no chance of knowing it. I have seen no other email system, where your attachments are not accepted, and you are not being notified about it. So it does seem strange and brings some frustration to both students and teachers.

 @kmeeusen ‌ I agree that other solutions would be better. But sometimes its the easy way to just answer an email and attach whatever relevant. And you would expect it to arrive.

Thanks again

Jeppe