Bug icloud/CalDAV invite e-mails

There seems to be a bug (maybe in my setup only) with meeting invites sent for iCloud calendar entries in the eM client. See images below.

When an iCloud calendar meeting is created in eM Client and people are added to it; they receive an iCloud invite email with the correct date stored in the attached ICS file. But the buttons in the email body, showing accept/decline/maybe lead to an iCloud web page stating “Cannot find event details” and showing an icon with today’s date, not the date of the scheduled meeting.

This kind of error does not happen with creating an icloud meeting invite via outlook ios app. Invite emails created via that method contain buttons that lead to a page with the correct date and the confirmation answer. So it can work correctly with icloud/CalDAV.

If I (the meeting invitee) am lucky, the recipient uses an email client that interprets the attached ICS-file and places additional accept/decline/maybe buttons on top of the invite. I just need to hope the recipient clicks on those buttons and not on those created by iCloud in the email body…

I hope there is an easy fix and it is not something that keeps hovering between parties.

Thank you!

Happy Monday,

Is there anybody out there - from the eM client team - who could please look into this and reproduce, maybe even fix the issue?

Since it does not happen with the Outlook iPhone App, I assume there is some information transfer process between eM client and the iCloud/CalDAV server, where the bug happens.

The issue seems minor, but in a professional meeting environment, when using iCloud/CalDAV, unfortunately renders eM client unusable. It cannot be that business partners do receive meeting invites, which they click on to confirm the meeting and then receive an error message. That makes invitees look unprofessional, so they need to use another software than eM client to organize meetings.

Thank you!

Is there a chance to get the status of the investigation? A “yes, we can reproduce the error, but don’t have a fix yet” already helps. Thank you

It is probably best if you’re not getting a response on the forum to use the VIP Support and file a support ticket with them to get updated status: Support | Remote Assistance | License Manager | eM Client

Most activity in the forums are community users, and not staff of eM Client. If you can replicate an issue I would report it using the VIP support.

Thank you for the response Iancealot! I really appreciate it. Maybe I need to give some background info:

  1. Gary wrote directly to me that they are looking into it. I asked him directly a few days later about the status but did not yet get a response. I was hoping to get a response this way, from whoever in the team is looking into it.
  2. I am still evaluating em client and have not decided yet to buy it or go with another option. When I see a (for me) fundamental issue like this while evaluating my options, I think it is only fair to give someone like me the possibility to sort out the issue before deciding to purchase the software. I am uncertain, but isn‘t the VIP support only available to people who purchased the software?

I didn’t know you already had a conversation going with Gary, I just saw in your prior post you mentioned “Is there anybody out there - from the eM client team”. I just wanted to make the point that the eM client team as a whole doesn’t constantly monitor the forums, and if you wanted to have a priority way to get support with ticket tracking, then using the VIP support is the proper method to do so. The VIP support can be purchased separately, but purchasing eM Client does provide the first year of the VIP support.

What I can say from my personal experience when using the VIP support is that the back & forth might not always be very fast, but in the end all my tickets I put in were resolved in one way or another.

Now regarding your issue, looking at the screenshot you sent you said the calendar options at the top work, while the calendar options in the email body do not. It looks like the options at the top were generated by eM Client (due to .ics data being passed) and you say they work, while the other options seem to be links that iCloud generates as part of the HTML email body. So the links you say are not working could be possibly generated by iCloud itself, which wouldn’t be a eM Client issue since it is only displaying the HTML body as generated by iCloud. Of course I don’t have iCloud so I have no experience with this, I use a email hosting service that offers CalDAV for the calendaring. Hopefully someone else in the forums that uses iCloud will be able to offer better advice then I can.

Thanks for your explanation and looking into the issue.

I will not buy VIP support or a license if I think the software is not suited for my purpose. It’s a catch 22: I cannot sort out a bug without paying and am not willing to not pay if the software seems to have this (for me essential) bug…

You understood the calendar invite issue perfectly correctly. The ICS file is interpreted by the em client, and options are added—those options work. And yes, the not working options are generated by the iCloud server. Unfortunately, receiving the invite on the iPhone, that email client is not that smart and does not offer separate options, so the recipient is stuck with no working options and cannot accept the invite. Given the mobile nature of today’s world, I assume many people would fall into that “trap”.

I cannot say whose side the problem lies on. But I doubt it is apple. When going through the process with the outlook app, it works perfectly. So I assume that the em client is sending apple the meeting info in a format the iCloud server interprets incorrectly. Microsoft seems to do that better. I might be wrong and the source for the error is apple.

Starting the discussion with someone from the em client company would help to sort it out.

If the broken button links are part of the email message generated by iCloud, then the only way it wouldn’t be an Apple issue is if eM Client is displaying the HTML incorrectly with those button options. I also find it interesting you say it is completely broken when receiving the invite using the iPhone email client, that doesn’t seem right.

What I would do is right click on the email in eM Client and view the “Mail Source”. Look for the links for those buttons and paste directly in the browser. You could also look at the email source from Outlook and see how it compares to eM Client. Basically all an email client does is take the mail source, and interpet it. So the only thing eM Client could be doing wrong is when it interprets the HTML source data it is breaking the button link url.

I just find it strange that the broken button options are part of the generated iCloud email, and if you click the button it is broken only in eM Client, but doing the exact same thing in Outlook it works. Basically clicking the button I suspect opens a browser window of the iCloud website with that event in question. If that is the case then you will want to compare the URL links when clicking the button in eM Client to Outlook and see where it is taking you.

Thanks again for taking the time to think about it. I need to clarify something because it does not seem I made it clear enough:

There is nothing wrong with the e-mail module of em client when receiving the e-mail invite generated by the iCloud server. em client and all other clients lead to a website that states “cannot find event details” following the embedded HTML links - if the email was generated based on info from the calendar module of em client. About that:

There seems to be something “wrong” with the calendar module of the em client when telling the iCloud server to generate the invite e-mail. Information is shared between the calendar client and the iCloud server when the calendar client tells the iCloud server to create the meeting. It seems iCloud is requesting more information than the info provided by em client. iCloud does not only seem to need info to create the ICS file but also info to create the links. Since em client is not providing those, iCloud just displays “cannot find meeting info”.

iCloud might not follow CalDAV standards here, so this behavior might not occur with other CalDAV servers. Given the market share iCloud has and the fact that even Microsoft has adapted to it, I hope em client does the same, even if it is not standard. That is why I wrote “wrong” in quote marks above. It might be that em client is following standards perfectly, and there is nothing wrong with it. But it does not work with iCloud, and before thinking apple will change and ask for less info, I hope em client can adapt and will provide more information. Everything is written based on speculation because the technical guys from the em client team have not engaged in any correspondence - yet.

I understand the situation better now, thanks for explaining things in more detail so I understand the full situation.

So basically you assume the way eM Client is creating the event causes iCloud to generate an invite with invalid links in the email message body. You say it works in Outlook, and Microsoft seem to do that better. The way I understand it Outlook uses the iCloud Add-in (Use iCloud for Windows to synchronize calendar and contacts with Outlook - Microsoft Support) developed by Apple, so in essence Outlook is not doing the sync’ing, it is the iCloud Windows client doing the communication. If that is the case, then yes it is possible Outlook works better because it is actually using the iCloud client developed by Apple, who might be using their own way to interface with the iCloud calendaring, while eM Client which doesn’t use that add-in is forced to use CalDAV. Of course I am only guessing and don’t know the specifics.

The one thing I don’t understand, why is an email invite being generated pointing the link to an event that is broken right after you create it? Doesn’t make sense it should do that regardless if their was missing information passed to iCloud. Why create links to broken events from the get go? And the fact that the included ICS file is processed correctly and works seems like the event was added to iCloud in a way it could generate a working ICS file.

I don’t know, something doesn’t sound right. Hopefully you find a solution to your issue, I put enough thought into this to know it is something at the iCloud end of things since it is the one generating those links, and I have no experience with iCloud to comment any further about this. Good luck.

Thanks for putting your thoughts into this.

One thing I did not specify, Microsoft does it right with their outlook iOS app. The add-in you mentioned developed by apple is working in the outlook desktop client. It is therefore working on a purely by microsoft developed product.

About your question why there is a broken link generated even though the ics file is correct, that is something I am wondering about myself. My assumption is, icloud expects info for the ics file and info for the link, the latter missing when the em client is pushing for the invite request.

At the end, it should not be us scratching our heads about this - thanks for doing so anyway ! - I am hoping at some point to hear from the em client team.

I mentioned the desktop client method since eM Client currently is only for the desktop, so I assumed when you said Outlook you meant the desktop version for an equal comparison.

Even so, are you sure the outlook iOS app is talking directly to iCloud? Or is the outlook iOS app saving the calendar data locally and then the iOS built-in iCloud functionality doing the real sync’ing? That would be my guess how it is being handled since Microsoft has always avoided directly supporting CalDAV and CardDAV in Outlook.

I have had to deal with WAY more desktop Outlook issues then I have ever had to deal with when it came to eM Client, and I know eM Client is not perfect but feel it is the best desktop client there is when using it with my IMAP, CalDAV, and CardDAV hosting provider. So hopefully you figure out the issue to a point you decide to continue to use eM Client. As you see it has a active user base and I couldn’t imagine getting support for the other email clients is any easier.

You might be right about iOS being involve and therefore it is working with the outlook app.

I just abandoned outlook on desktop. Too many issues.

I really like em client. This meeting thing is annoying though. And I wish would be some repose. Thank you!

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