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Fix Your Broken Outlook Personal Folders (PST) File

If you use Outlook and you’ve noticed it being excessively slow or just having errors, you should probably scan and repair your Personal Folders file for any problems. It’s sorta like checkdisk for your email.

Repairing Your PST File

To repair your PST file, you’ll have to open the Scanpst.exe utility that’s included by default with Outlook. The only problem is that there’s no shortcut to it, so you’ll have to find it in the Outlook folder.

Open up explorer and then browse down to the following folder for Outlook 2007:

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12

Or one of these folders for Outlook 2003 and earlier (thanks to Mike in the comments):

C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\Mapi\1033
C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\1033

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Once you open up the utility, you’ll have to find the location of your PST file by clicking the Browse button. If you don’t know the location, there are instructions for figuring out the location further down in this article.

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Click on the Start button to start the scan…

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It will take a while to scan the file, and you’ll get a report at the end telling you whether you have errors in the file.

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Click on the Repair button, and after a while you’ll finally get the “Repair complete” message.

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If you are curious what was actually repaired during the process, you’ll find a text file in the same directory as your PST file with the same name as the PST file.

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Most of the information in the file is pretty cryptic… so I’m not sure reading it will help all that much.

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Find Your Outlook PST File Locaton

If you just have a single PST file created automatically by Outlook, there’s a standard location under your user profile directory. Open up an explorer window, and then paste in the following into the address bar:

%appdata%\Microsoft\Outlook

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You should see your PST file in the list, usually called Outlook.pst at least in the later versions of Outlook. If you’ve created a new personal folders file, it might be in a different location.

Find Location of Outlook PST in Non-Standard Location

Sometimes your PST file will be in a different location, for a number of reasons.. for instance if you created a second PST you would have been prompted to save it somewhere.

If you can actually open Outlook, right-click on your personal folders location, and then choose Properties.

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On the properties screen, click the Advanced button.

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Now you’ll see the location of the file in the Filename field. As a bonus, you can also compact the folders from here (although you shouldn’t compact it until it’s repaired first)

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It’s well worth it to scan your PST file every so often so you don’t lose data. Of course… you should be backing up your files as well.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 03/6/08

Comments (166)

  1. mike

    On office 2003 and earlier and windows xp and earlier it is actually located here: C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\1033

    MS support link giving the details about scanpst: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/287497

  2. The Geek

    Thanks for the clarification… I only have Outlook 2007 installed so I didn’t really think that through. Updated the article!

  3. Andy

    I found it here: C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\Mapi\1033. I have Outlook 2002

  4. The Geek

    @Andy

    Microsoft must be playing hide the utility… they just keep moving it! =)

  5. onionose
  6. Hickepedia

    Compacting your PST when you’ve deleted items (and emptied the Recycle Bin) is another good idea for keeping the overall size down – these files don’t always self-optimize, and recapturing the whitespace within the file left when messages are deleted can do wonders for speed and overall reliability, especially when you consider the general rule with PSTs: the larger the PST, the more likely it is to become corrupt.

  7. The Geek

    @onionose

    The OutlookTools utility is great, but for this purpose all it does it help you launch ScanPst by giving you a button. You’d probably be better off creating a shortcut to Scanpst.exe and launching it that way.

    I definitely recommend OutlookTools for other reasons, such as clearing search data and MRU lists:
    http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/microsoft-office/clear-outlook-searches-and-mru-most-recently-used-lists/

  8. Tony Lawrence

    I have found scanpst not to work now and then..

    Microsoft does this very stupidly. Mail messages should be stored as individual files – build an index from those and then you can recreate it any time you mess it up.

    Most of the problems with pst’s come from users not emptying their deleted items folder and the pst gets larger and larger and larger.. and eventually breaks.

  9. Zac Garrett

    If outlook is running very slow and nothing seems to resolve the issue then scanpst works like a charm. On a computer at work someone kept complaining about outlook 2k7 being slow. It would take 30+ seconds to click from one email to another. After running scanpst on each of the PST files multiple times (until it no longer gives an error) it pretty much resolved the issue.

    I also setup auto archive for this person. She had over 20k emails in her main pst file’s inbox. Just plain scary if you ask me.

  10. Doug Nelson

    Someone needs to come up with a single backup/compactor/check/repair/scheduler utility for Outlook. It needs to be able to have multiple backups, handle multiple PST files, and the option to run completely unattended (ie: shutdown Outlook, do its thing, restart Outlook, all via its own scheduler).

    So far Retrospect Backup is the only backup utility I’ve found that’s smart enough to shut down Outlook and actually check to make sure it’s properly and completely shut down before proceding, but it’s gross overkill just for backing up PST files, and doesn’t do the compacting/checking/repairing or start Outlook back up again when it’s done.

  11. montanaran

    Wow, I’ve just checked my email files,(which I’ve never had auto archive on until today), and I had 2.2g in there. I guess that goes from plain scary to horrifying. :)
    RAN

  12. Bob

    If you want to speed up booting of Outlook 2000 just copy the pst file, delete the original and rename the copy. The main reason for slow bootup is fragmentation of the pst file so simply copying it and renaming the copy speeds everything up.

  13. Alejandro

    I am hopeful that your suggestions will work…except i’ve tried all of the above and I have gotten to the point where I can hit “Repair” in the Inbox Repair Tool but then the Inbox Repair Tool no longer wants to respond. It freezes. Is this normal?

  14. Alejandro

    I spoke too soon…the instructions are brilliant! The Inbox Repair Tool had repaired the problems except that I did not notice the new dialog box appeared behind my internet explorer page stating that the files were repaired.

    Thank you all for your help. It is 1:30am and it has taken me 7 hours to resolve this issue (but 1/2 hour after I read everyone’s comments above).

    Now I can go to sleep.

    Cheers!

  15. Phil

    Thanks for the help!! I uninstalled a trial version of MS office 2007 and installed a full version of 2003 on my Vista machine. I kept getting a message of outlook not being able to open my .pst file. I ran this and it worked perfectly! Thanks again!!

  16. Ron

    What a relief to get excellent advice after all the research I had been doing proved fruitless. Had rescued a .pst file off my father-in-law’s hard drive (Windows errors couldn’t be fixed and would not start the OS) and couldn’t get it to open. After hours of trying other suggestions online (I admit it, I didn’t know what version Outlook he had) I finally found this, and got instant results. Thanks once again for putting this information online for others to use.

  17. don naduriak

    After running scanpst.exe, outlook still won’t boot, saying that the personal folders file was not closed properly, and then it all shuts down.
    Thanks

  18. Nicole Mills

    I’m getting the “Outlook.pst is not a personal folders file” message when I try to open Outlook. I had a ton of emails (not knowing there was a size limtation), and now I can’t locate my outlook.pst file on my computer. It’s gone! How can I use the scanpst utility if there is no pst file to repair? I’ve gotten the “would you like to archive your older emails” message in Outlook previously, which I’ve clicked “yes” to…so does that mean they’re stored somewhere on my computer? I’m completely confused….any help or direction would be appreciated!

  19. IGol

    when i tried to use the SCNPST it said it does not recognize the file (while it is pst) and no information can be recovered.

    What can i do about it? I really need my email back!

  20. Jim

    Just want to say thanks!

  21. Renee

    Great info…my hard drive failed but I’d backed everything up to an external drive the month before. Wnen I restored, Outlook can’t seem to find the file for my old emails. What am I doing wrong?

  22. Bob

    Thanks you very much for your help in fixing my broken Outlook Personal Folders (PST) files. The procedure, although lengthy (waiting for the computer to do it’s thing), worked like a “champ”.

  23. aarti

    I am getting an error as ” It is not a personal folder file ” while my file is a .pst file . How to recover the file. I saw above somebody has asked same question but not able to get what he did to get PST open.

    Please help me

  24. aarti

    In continutation to above message I tried scanning the PST with scanPST.exe but it gives me error as “not able to recognize the file”

  25. MentalT

    Thank you! Just what i needed!

  26. matt

    Thank you so much, you have made my day!! Why cant Ms help be so good. :)

  27. Peggy

    Lovely Job telling everyone. I found you after doing what one is supposed to do – use the Microsoft Help pages. I believe I paid enough for the Microsoft Ultimate Package that I should be able to run Outlook 2007 with the size of files I want, not having to delete my rules, use these hidden tools, check my add-ons for problems, compress my files in their program. You’d think they’d run a maint. program. Surely – I can’t be the only one that experiences problems.

    Thanks HOW TO GEEK!

    :)

  28. KC

    Thank you, thank you for this fabulous how-to! I have spent lots of time reading different help sites, but this is the only one that told me exactly what to do. Thanks again!

  29. Stan

    Thank you for this info.

    If I run scanpst, and I’m getting an error, what can I use to recover my pst file. The file is just over 2gb.

  30. monica

    THANK YOU – was waiting for a friend to phone me with porper help – eventually started searching for resolution myself and found this site. GREAT HELP!

  31. SHArQ

    Thanks for the info!!

    BTW… And in response to Tony Lawrence: Just because “other” e-mail clients do store each e-mail as an individual file (e.g. Thunderbird), it does not necessarily mean that it is THE way to do things right.

    Or… does your favorite database system (Oracle perhaps?) store EACH RECORD of a table in an individual file? Or each table of a database? It doesn’t make any sense, does it?

  32. matt

    Great help after hours of trying to fix outlook
    thanks very much!!!!!!!!!!!
    matt

  33. Samatha

    I tried scanning the PST with scanPST.exe but it gives me error as “not able to recognize the file”.

    The PST was originally exported from Outlook 2003 and burned to a CD. Coppied the file to the local hard drive before attempting to bring it back into Outlook 2003.

    Any ideas?
    Thank you.

  34. Raquel

    i’ve tried all of the above and I have gotten to the point where I can hit “Repair” in the Inbox Repair Tool but then the Inbox Repair Tool no longer wants to respond. It freezes and I end up having to end the program … PLEASE HELP … it’s work email and the pst fil is only 1.4G … thanks

  35. Bala

    I am getting an error as ” It is not a personal folder file ” while my file is a .pst file . How to recover the file. I saw above somebody has asked same question but not able to get what he did to get PST open.

    Please help me

  36. mamanerd

    I’ve see problems copying the PST in from a cd/dvd where it’s left marked “read only” and both outlook and scanpst fail to open it since they can’t open it in writeable mode.

  37. LLL

    Thanks so much for explaining this so clearly. I have Outlook 2007 and this has happened to me twice in the last 4 months. I spent hours waiting and getting Dell to talk to who fixed it both times, BUT I did it myself this time and it worked just great! I’m bookmarking your site….

  38. Queenie

    Thank you so much!! it really work like wonder!
    Woohoo..

  39. Scott H

    Find Your Outlook PST File Locaton,
    They are actually located here on most versions of windows.
    %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

  40. Traci

    This did not work…i have 2 folders showing that cannot open…and have no name…any clue on how to try to fix?

  41. Rob

    I get the message “Errors have been found in the file
    c\users\crom\appdata\local\microsoft\outlook\outlook.pst” whenever I try and delete messages from Outlook mailboxes.
    I use Vista and Outlook2007.
    I ran scan.pst and it comes up with the message “An error has occured which caused the scan to to be stopped. No changes have been made to the scanned file”.

    Can you help?

  42. Jade

    Rob, I’m having the exact same issue. Scanpst is giving me that error and I can’t get past it.

  43. simon

    I have the same problem …have run scanpst many times and always
    gives me same

    “An error has occured which caused the scan to to be stopped. No changes have been made to the scanned file

    even did a chkdsk…

    what is solution……anybody????

  44. Cesar

    Got outlook to start, but all my mail disapeared :-( I’m toast…

  45. Brett Gibson

    My computer was running slow and I disabled a couple of processes (I am a novice, know just enough to be dangerous, and do not know what I disabled). I had assumed the processes would restart when I rebooted. The computer crashed. When I rebooted, everything works fine but Outlook. If I try to open Outlook, it says : The data file “Personal Folder” was not closed properly. This file is being checked for prblems. Then the screen turns blue, sayd error … memory is being dumped. When I do a scanpst, just past halfway of the scan the same blue screen appears with the error message and memory being dumped. Any ideas??? I have also tried system restore with no luck.

  46. JLPicard

    To those of you who are having the error “Outlook.pst is not a personal folders file” (or similar), we had this problem at work last week and found a solution surrounding our particular scenario.

    In our situation we had the PST file stored on a server. The share to the file on the server was created using Outlook through encrypted pathway/drive letter. The problem was that the user was trying to access the file via outlook through a drive letter that was mapped using an UNENCRYPTED pathway/drive letter.

    The only solution we had was to copy the file down from the server via the encrypted pathway to a local desktop. Then we recopied it back up to the server via the unencrypted pathway. Voila. It worked.

    What does that mean to the common end-user: do you use encyption software on your computer? If you do or did when you made the file then you literally have to backtrack, using the same encryption software you originally used.

    If this is not what you did or have, then I’m still at a loss for why you are having the problem.

  47. deBB

    if you are unable to access your pst file after moving between drives check that the properties are not read only.

  48. Bev J

    It worked! Thanks! I tried using Outlook help–nothing worked until I tried your advice. Your steps were easy to follow too. I’m bookmarking your site!

  49. Ryan

    I found the repair tool but I cannot map it to what I think is my pst file. My outlook will open fine however I cannot access any of my saved folders. At my whits end!

  50. Denise

    Thanks so much for this! I had no clue about the .pst repair utility. Saved my bacon.

  51. Jim

    Started last week. Notice received that Outlook couldn’t open folder containing files for send/receive…
    I have run scanpst.exe many times and always
    gives me same error message:
    “An error has occured which caused the scan to to be stopped. No changes have been made to the scanned file
    I don’t feel like coughing up $80 for a repair program that performs a task that MS should be providing.
    Anyone get past this?

  52. Matt Jones

    Have you tried restoring a shadow copy? (Under the pst’s file properties tab)

  53. Tricia W

    I am having the same issue. Rans Scanpst.exe but received error that hard disk needed checking. Ran ckddsk – volume was clean. Also ran defrag – 3 fragmented files fixed. Tried Scanpst.exe again and same message. What do I do next?

  54. Jim

    FIXED!
    MS has a program PST2GB which allows you to remove part of what in my case was a .pst file that exceeded the 2G limit. Apparently Outlook 2000 self destructs after 2G without warning and corrupts the file. Later versions are more forgiving. Thank you Bill Gates.
    Google the above program from MS and run it. Although they said it usually worked by cutting off 11-40mB, I needed to cut off 45mB before the scanpst.exe would complete and then repair. (I first ran it taking off 100mb just to see that it would work and then I started to worked back down.) Keep taking more off until scanpst.exe runs. Play with the numbers and see how low you can get it. In the end you will have a few of the original folders and one described as “lost and found” within which you will see recovered folder(s). In experimenting, when I got it down to the lowest number that would permit scanpst.exe to run and repair, I also ended up with the fewest folders under “lost and found”.
    I think it is important to do this procedure on the same computer or at least the same version of Outlook. I got some odd results when trying to take my problem home to work on it.
    Be patient, if the program says it is “not responding” just let it be for a while. I learned in this process that not responding can still mean “working on it”.
    Once scanpst.exe completed, file/open in Outlook and select outlook data file. Search for the file that was just repaired and open it. It will show up as a new personal folder within the tree of folders that you should have in Outlook. Then “export as file” each folder as “comma separated value for windows” and then “import as file” same file as “comma separated value for windows” making sure to check “map fields” before importing.
    Everything worked except the emails addresses are indicated as email#3.
    The emails ended up in that “revovered file” under lost and found
    I am unsure of site rules about hyperlinking otherwise I would have tried to make it easier.
    Good luck

  55. Rob

    Hi Jim
    do you know whether this fix works for Windows Vista?
    It seems to apply to W2000 and XP.

    thanks

    Rob

  56. Cam

    If you can still get into your folders but the .pst file itself is flaky, I’ve found that you can sometimes work around the problem by following these steps:

    1 Create a set of new Personal Folders (File/New/Outlook Data File).
    Note: If you have another (secondary) physical hard drive in the machine you are working on (say, E:\ drive for this example), select a folder on this drive as the location for the new data file, e.g. E:\temp\personalfolders.pst. This will save a lot of disk grinding if you have this option available to you. Don’t bother with this step if you can’t be sure this other drive (i.e., E:\) is a physical drive rather than a partition of the main system drive.

    2. Work your way through each of the folders found in the ‘broken’ Personal Folders data file. Right-click each folder and select ‘Copy “”‘. Select the new Personal Folders as the destination.

    3. Wait. Wait for a long, long time.

    4. When all of this is done (yes – you can even do the Calendar if you are running O2k3 or later), close Outlook and move the E:\temp\personalfolders.pst to the normal location for your .PST files, which as mentioned in previous comments depends upon the version of Windows (and/or Office?) you are running. If you don’t have a secondary drive or didn’t create the new Personal Folders data file in a non-default location, ignore this step.

    5. Re-open Outlook and change the default mail delivery location to the new Personal Folders file.

    6. Close the old (broken) Personal Folders data file.

    7. Close and re-open Outlook to ensure it all works as expected – if so, compact the Personal Folders and you should be done.

    Hope this helps.

    Cam

  57. Tom

    this info was very helpful; thanks

  58. OliverSB

    Thanks so much to all for contributing advice here. A collective life-saver

    An additional tips if you are stuck with the pst. scan not working on a corrupted .pst file:

    I have gone to the offending .pst file’s properties / advanced & clicked on the compress and register tick-boxes – then apply – it took 10 minutes or so – but finally it has fixed the corrupt file enough that I am anow able to run the pst scan programme.

  59. Rob

    Thanks Cam. Your instructions were great and fixed the problem.
    Outlook now seems to be working normally…I can’t think of why I’d need to run Scanpst?

    Thanks for the help.

    Rob

  60. Donald Powell

    I found scanpst and ran it. It gets 99% and then sends an error message saying an error has occured and the repair was halted “OK”. What else can I do. I’ve lost all my personal folders and my address book.

  61. Usque

    Thanks a lot for your help. So many sites on the net about this problem, but no help at all. You rock, guys!

  62. john

    I got error messages and cannot open my pst. file. Lost all my contacts.
    Error says to go to Inbox Repair Tool. I am running Outlook 2000 with Windows XP. Cannot find Inbox Repair Tool. Also, what program opens a pst file? John

  63. San

    Hi, My Outlook 2003 freezes after start-up. I’ve tries Scanpst.exe, it reports No Error. I’ve been using this account for alomst 2 yrs and the PST size is under 400MB. I’m stuck with this for over 1 week and will appreciate your remedy.

  64. Nz

    Guys… is there any solution to fix pst file….. this is drive me crazy I have been try working on this for a week…and i still don’t know how to fix this…if there is still no solution BILL GATES…. help….

  65. Mike

    Thanx for the fix!!! Truly helped me recover my e-mail THANK YOU 1000X

  66. linda

    Help me. Sleepless nights and going to work very tired…

    I recently set up outlook and it donwloaded 20,000 emails, it run slowly and then one day didnt download new messages. The programme informed me to run scan.pst but after 1.5h wait I hit run and everything freazes!!! Please help, this is the 5th time I try and it does not work!!!!

  67. Bob

    I didn’t know the PST file was bad – Outlook 2003 had no problems with it, but when the IT guys gave me a newer, faster PC with Outlook 2007, it couldn’t open it. I got “out of memory” and “attachment too large” errors, but not a suggestion that it felt the file was bad.
    Ran SCANPST and got a PST file that opens: it was 240MB, now it’s 260MB and there’s 435KB in the log file. I suspect that the Outlook 2003 version I was running didn’t use the same PST format that Outlook 2007 insists upon. Good ole Microsoft – if you don’t like the standard, rewrite it and don’t tell anyone!

  68. andrew

    can you help…I lost personal folders that I created over time to organize email recieved related to specific subjects(investing, attorney etc) tried everthing to recover from my laptop. now I have 2 personal folders group..#1 the default C:\outlook.pst does not contain past emails and #2 C:\document and settings\..\\\outlook.pst does contain past emails but is not the default email file name. I don’t know how to recover the must needed specific folders and now how to change the default email account.

  69. Malaka

    Cam’s tutorial is the BEST way to fix PST Files.
    Creating a NEW PST File and copying contents into it is the BEST way to resolve corruption, slow pst loading etc.

  70. Ben

    I don’t get CAM’s tutorial, how are you supposed to move files from a corrupted .pst file if I can’t open it?

    Thanks,

    Ben

  71. Ben

    I think the main problem nobody has a addressed is when you get error message “xxx.pst is not a personal folders file”

    the size of my file is 2.5 GB I was on outlook 2003 with windows xp

    solid state HD crashed 7/31/09, recovered the .pst now I get this error when trying to re-import into outlook 2003

    I backed up my .pst 7/19/09 so I thought I’d only miss 2 weeks of e-mail but when I try to import that .pst I get prompted to run scanpst.exe, I do that, it says repaired but when I try to import the repaired .pst into outlook it doesn’t finish, gives me error message “could not complete operation one or more paramenter invalid” and leaves a Lost and Found folder with remnants of my existing folder structure setup

    Have any of you found good info on how to solve this?

    Thanks

  72. Alicia

    I have followed all the instructions as far as “fixing” my pst file and went as far as purchasing the Uniblue software to fix the file. Everything has been recovered but I can’t send from outlook 2007. Please advise!

  73. Michael

    To all who cant open your pst when getting a new computer; be sure to select the proper type of staorage “outlook Personal Folders File” or “outlook 97-2002 Personal files” in other word if you created the file with OL 03 and above, use the “outlook personal folders file” if not then use the other. Also, with OL older than 07 your PST file size limit is 2G(pretty sure) and if you go over that limit you PST will become corrupt and die on you. So if you are getting close, create a new PST and populat that. OL 07 should handle up to 20G of PST.
    SAN, reinstall your oulook.

  74. Michael

    To all who cant open your pst when getting a new computer; be sure to select the proper type of staorage “outlook Personal Folders File” or “outlook 97-2002 Personal files” in other word if you created the file with OL 03 and above, use the “outlook personal folders file” if not then use the other. Also, with OL older than 07 your PST file size limit is 2G(pretty sure) and if you go over that limit you PST will become corrupt and die on you. So if you are getting close, create a new PST and populate that. OL 07 should handle up to 20G of PST.
    SAN, reinstall your oulook.

  75. Johannes

    Thanks so much for your help. Been trying to fix this for the last 4 days now. One question you said that there is only one .pst file I have three account comming out in outlook but when i looked there are three .pst files and only one needed repair. is this normal ?

  76. Lauren

    Thank you so much – this worked perfectly! Saved all my emails!

  77. Shrikant

    Hi there,

    I was downgrading from vista business to winxp pro.
    I was using MS Outlook 2003 . Backed up all the PST . then aftere installation of XP and updating the OS tried to restore the Outlook.pst after configuring an account and replacing the Outlook.pst by the backup.
    I got an error “outlook.pst is not a personal folders file” . Then i follwed the SCANPST.exe method .
    My PST is 2.4 GB but doesnt matter as i am using 2003 .

    But even after recovering i was not able to see any mails in the mailbox/inbox .

    So i tried using Stellar Outlook recovery and Easy recovery from ontrack …all did well and showed me the folder structures but there were zero mails inside all the folders (inbox/sent/deleted).

    I am trying to restore the Outlook.pst but am not getting anywhere …Need some help here .

    thanks in advance.

    ./s

  78. Oliver

    Running Scanpst.exe can take a very long time. Mine took about 4 hours to go through stages 1-8 on a 1.5GB .pst file (on XP), then about 3 hours to repair. The good news is that it worked. Another thing is that the XP version gives no info about what it did on completion. You just click an ‘OK’ box and that’s it.

  79. Peter

    WOW !!! YOU ARE THE BEST!!!
    BIG STRESS RELIEF!!!!

  80. Brittany

    I have been working from 8:30 am to about 1:00 pm trying to fix my email and finally found your website with these wonderful directions. It worked like a charm! Thank you so much!

  81. Bert

    When I try to run scanpst it tells me that the file is in use by another application. Outlook isn’t open and I’ve rebooted and tried it again without opening outlook. Any suggestions?

  82. Hao

    Thanks!!

  83. Simple Fix

    I had moved a bunch of my .PST files from one drive to another. After moving the PST´s, I could not import them into Outlook 2003 anymore. It told me I did not have permission. I tried your guide, and scanned the PST that I could not open. It told me the PST was “read-only” and that I would not be able to repair if it found errors. So I checked my pst file, properties, unchecked the read-only field,then scanned it with the tool, and found no errors. I then went back into Outlook, and succesfully imported the PST. Silly fix perhaps, but I am pleased :)
    Great guide.

  84. Damian

    recently upgraded to Windoes 7 and (Office) Outlook 2007 from XP and office 2003. When trying to access .pst file I get “File access denied – don’t have permission to access..” if I try to run SCANPST.EXE I get error “The program can’t start because OLMAPI32.dll is missing from your computer” Could this be a Windows 7 thing? if so is there any known fixes ? I have years of important emails I need access to. Thanks in advance.

  85. Benny

    Installed outlook 2007 on a 64bit Windows 7 pc. Before startup the outlook, I copied my old outlook pst and a large (1 G) archive pst file to the new outlook data folder.

    I can startup outlook to use the old default outlook.pst file and all email and connection account setup are ok.

    However, the outlook is totally freezing after I added the archive folder by openning the old large archive files. I had closed the outlook by killing the process and re-start again. The freezing outlook processing occured again. I check the outlook.exe process and it is using about 50% cpu. I guess it is working on some repair and reindex processing. I decide to wait and wait until it completes the processing.

    However, outlook is running for more than 18 hours now. Should outlook 2007 take such long time for repairing and reindexing a 1G archive file.

    Urgently need helps and advice. Should I abort it and look for other solution now?

  86. Repair Pst File

    Great guide, thanks

  87. gavin dickinson

    thank you!!!!! I knew how to do this in the past, but needed help, and this was the first site that I could actually use and accomplish the repair…

    you made my weekend!!!

    g

  88. Tory Teunis

    What if you can not get into your old outlook? Is there a way to get the location of your pst file from something outside of opening the outlook program?

  89. Nick

    Nick
    Hi thanks for your article on repairing PST files. My problem is that the scanpst utility also makes my comp crash. Everytime I try access that file, to backup, restore repair etyc it crashes my computer. I cant open outlook as a result. What do I do?

  90. pramod

    Hi,

    Thanks for you, its working now

  91. alec

    I can’t open Outlook. I get the error message that my Outlook.pst file is in use by another application. Please close and try again. Outlook isn’t open, and I can’t find anything using my .pst file. I can’t run the scanpst file without it being closed first.
    Any ideas out there? I’v ebeen without Outlook for about 8 weeks now and have to access e-mails through the Supanet hom epage – its a real pain in the ar***e.

  92. Prabs

    Outllook suckes…

  93. San

    Hi,

    I have a .pst file which is almost 18 gigs. Is there any way i can split 18 gigs file in to two different .pst’s.

    Thanks

  94. Rex

    I am so glad I found this site. Thank you so much for the help. Seems to have corrected my problem.

  95. moe

    Urgent Help Needed!!!!!

    I have backed up my emails, both ways on outlook 03, through export function, and also through copying the outlook.pst file!

    Now after this I have copied the files to a DVD. When I try and open the files it tells me that this is not a PST File even though I can see it is.

    I have tried everything I can think of, including trying to do a post format recovery to try and get the original pst file.

    I really need to recover the emails, and have exhausted every avenue. Can some one please help as its driving me nuts!

    USING OUTLOOK 03

    Thanks in advance

  96. Varun

    Thnks very much for submitting this type of solutions .
    It worked for my pst.

  97. Panache

    I am at 4.38GB in outlook and just learned I am over the 2GB limit. My files are corrupt and I tried to run scanpst but it won’t let me repair. Am I toast or is there anyway to get these pst files back?. Spoke with microsoft which were not helpful and said to try a 3rd party software. Any suggestions. I am not at all techie

  98. Panache

    Oh, i am using outlook 2007 on vista. I am panicking…..my whole work load is there.

  99. James

    I have a 18gig pst. It decided that it is going to fall over and die today. I scanned and fixed it, but the problem is that the archives are going to be big too. I cannot understand why MS do not have something automated here. The user should not have to administer a database.

  100. MBLMBMMBA

    I’m having the “Outlook.pst is not a personal folders file” error message when I try to open Outlook. I had a ton of emails not knowing there was a size limt, and now I can’t locate my outlook.pst file on my computer.

    I copied the

    %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

    %appdata%\Microsoft\Outlook

    and found the directories but no .pst file in either

    Just before i found this site, i used the repair from the install disk, i defraqged and now i think its gone completely.

    How can I use the scanpst utility if there is no pst file to repair? Any help or direction would be GREATLY appreciated!

    In Appreciation,
    MBLMBMMBA

  101. Anthea Froggatt

    Please help. I have a problem with accessing my outlook pst file which I cannot resolve using these fixes.
    I am using:
    Windows Vista Home Premium
    Outlook 2007
    Pst file size: 1.14GB

    Error message when attempting to open Outlook:
    “Cannot open your default email folders. The file C:\Users\Anthea\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\Outlook.pst cannot be accessed.”

    Error message when trying to look at settings of data file (Control Panel/Mail/Data files/Settings):
    “An unkown error occurred, error code: 0×80040116”

    Error message when trying to copy and paste .pst file to another location:
    “Cannot read from the source file or disk”

    Error message when trying to scanpst.exe (received at end of phase 1- check file consistency)
    “An unexpected error prevented access to this file. Use the disc error checking program to check the disk, and then try using the Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 Inbox Repair Tool again.”

    I have run the Check disk tool with no errors found.

    Please help as I have no idea what else to try.

  102. caimin

    Mate!
    after hours of mucking around trying to fix my Outlook using all kinds of methods, it was a couple of small points on this page that has have helped me solve the problem and my Outlook is now back up and running! I don’t usually leave comments on open sites, so this is testimony to my total appreciation……..thank you so much!!
    Caimin

  103. jv

    Cant seem to get microsoft?? I mean what kinda software is scanpst??

    It creates a .bak file for safety and when the scan fails etc one has to go pick this bak file

    and now the MS KB says just go an change the .bak file to .pst file to get your original file

    and then Outlook says it is NOT a pst file!!!!!! ha ha ha ha ha!!! so basically scanpst is a utility that kills ur pst file forever …..and u wont be able to do much with a .bak file —– thats not a backup file…its a JOKE!!!

  104. Bobsuruncle

    This was not the extent of my issue, however it brought to light the real issue. Also I am running windows 7 which added a level of obfuscation:

    Location of scanpst -C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12

    ran scan pst and it indicated the file was read only!!!!!!!!! opened cmd prompt and typed in the location of my pst file – attrib -r outlook pst

    Ran scanpst and viola! all is well.

  105. kjsacramento

    I don’t believe size is necessarily the problem – it appears other things can damage the pst file. My pst was over 10 GB with 10 email accounts imbedded in it. It didn’t crash until I used it on a drive that I treated like a server. I started opening the pst from a second computer and a few tries later, damaged. That pst files are not meant to be used on a LAN or WAN is substantiated by Microsoft and others at the following sites which may help or at least prevent a recurrence-
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/297019 and http://serverfault.com/questions/51424/multiple-outlook-users-on-a-single-pst-file.

  106. kjsacramento

    SOLUTION POSSIBILITIES: I have been struggling for several days to recover my pst file, running into many of the problems mentioned above, and finally did it even though it is still 8GB after compressing from 10GB and repairing. Maybe something here will help, but read the whole thing first. First, I promise to never use the same pst file on multiple machines again (see my earlier post)! I tried the scanpst.exe and it always locked up and I couldn’t open Outlook to make the suggested changes so I found that you can alternatively access the Outlook Account Settings via the ‘Control Panel – Mail’ in both XP and Vista. I didn’t have to delete the old pst – I simply added a new pst on each of the computers and made it the new default. Then I removed the old pst designation from the data file tab in just one of the computers – I didn’t delete the file, just removed it from the list. Once it was off the list, Outlook opened fine, but I still wasn’t able to open the old one on the first computer. Many things seemed to interfere with the scanpst.exe working smoothly, so here are some things I did – I changed the power settings in the Control Panel so the computer would not sleep, hibernate, or automatically turn off. I turned off all automatic updates and closed all other programs. Finally, I opened the Task Manager and saw that GoogleMediaServer was using up endless processing so I ended the process (be sure you know it is safe and wise to end a process first!). Then I went to try the scanpst.exe again, but it locked up as usual during backup, so I unchecked the backup file. I already had made a second copy of the original before I began anything, so it wasn’t necessary. I tried again and it still locked up, but I waited it out and a half hour later – COMPLETED!! Yeah!! I went back to the first computer, Outlook opened, and there it was! My original pst as a secondary (not default) data file! All files intact! After that, I could reset it to the default and it worked fine. The only other thing I had to do was move everything that had gotten into the temporary default inbox to my original inbox in the Outlook folders before removing the temporary pst. Now I have it exactly as it was originally! Whew!! By the way, one other thing I do to keep from losing mail is to be sure on setting up the emails (Email Advanced Settings) to leave a copy on the server until I delete them. It has saved me during crashes. Good luck to all!

  107. DCRican

    Outlook on crappy old work computer crashed yesterday. Archive PST file wouldnt open after the “did not close properly, checking for problems.” The pst repair utility said that it unexpectedly closed and did not complete, but that some repairs may have been done. Tried to load pst but still damaged. Running the repair util one more time. Is there someone out there that I can pay to repair a damaged pst file?

  108. Donna

    Thankyou so much! you have no idea how many days i have spent trying to figure this out, after finding your website this took me 5 minutes i thankyou soooooooooo much!!

  109. joyce

    i have lost my .pst documents some how but i do not know how so now i want to access my personal folders and i cant. Can you please help me?

  110. Pom

    This problem almost made me mad since I have a number of important e-mails in the broken file.
    Thank you so much.

  111. kailash

    Thanks mate , this really saved my life :) at the first when i had a quick glance i thought it might not work :D glad it worked like a charm :) thanks again :) thank you

  112. BULBUL

    go to the mail applet in the control panel and create/add a new PST file to
    your Outlook profile. Set this new PST file as your default delivery
    location. Once done, Outlook should start and then you can figure out why
    you cannot access the old outlook.pst file.

  113. Roger Tiedemann

    In large corp break/fix environment. We’ve been converting over to Outlook 2007 and have very large files. We find that right about 2G is a bad size for pst files, we’ve been advising to stay down at 1.7 and no larger. What I find is often times you cannot load a 2G pst in 2007, however you CAN load it in 2003. So I’ll move a file from a Vista machine with 2007 to an XP system with 2003, load the pst’s into Outlook there, create 2 new pst’s, drag about half of the data onto each of them and then the files will work with 2007. You may have to run scanpst first. Notes — 1. scanpst may fail, not because it fails but because you either have Outlook open, or when you closed outlook the file was not released. Only way around this is to reboot your computer. 2. supposedly the latest file format for outlook is supposed to reach 20G, the older ones were the ones that had the 2G limit. We’re advising our clientele to stay below 2G just to be sure. Also 20G files would become a mess to handle. Better to have 10 2G files. 3. I’m looking for a more elegant solution than moving files between systems. That’s a bit extreme. 4. so far I have not lost any messages with this method. 5. It’s generally not worth removing ‘some of the messages’ then compacting the large file. It’s faster and more efficient to just create 2 new pst’s.

  114. Syed Adnan Gerdazi

    Dear All,
    when i repair my outlook pst file ther is an error in pahase no 8 .
    can u tell me the other way then i repaire my outlook pst file.
    thanks

  115. Naresh

    Thank u soooo much

  116. DG

    I have been trying to use the Outlook scanpst.exe repair tool for hours. I could never browse to the folder and could not find it in my files! After seeing your web page I was able to copy and paste the directoy address, ran a repair and YESSSSS my Outlook is running again.

    Thank you so much!

  117. Ritika

    Have 2 problems i need help with:

    - What can i do if i have forgotten my pst’s password
    - What do i do if I get a message saying that a file is not a pst file when i try to import it, whe it actually is a pst file!!!!

    Any help is greatly appreciated!

  118. Tehmia

    It did not solve problem with my outlook ….

  119. rose

    thanks a million! i couldnt open outlook so i looked for the outlook.pst file, saved it on my external hardrive. I scanned it like you said and sure enough there were errors in the file. I repaired it and saved the outlook.pst back into the folder.

    outlook works again yay!

  120. Mark

    My pst scan is hanging up at phase 7 or 8 and won’t go beyond 0% . I’ve restarted the scan once at hangup with same result second time. What’s next for me?

  121. Mustafa

    I run scanpst and at first of eight steps it stucks in 90%. what to do?

  122. DJ Smith

    Worked great- went to control panel, user accounts, then clicked “mail” to find the location of my pst files… Had to run through three seperate pst’s, but worked hreat Yeah baby! Thanks a million!

  123. Santhu

    its has Worked Great thanku

  124. Bob

    Let me first explain the problem – all of a sudden Outlook wouldn’t open and issued an error message telling me to “fix” the archive pst file using scanpst.exe (when I searched the hard drive, I discovered that I no longer had ANY pst files other than contacts, tasks and calendar. I tried multiple times without success – Outlook won’t even load – I just got done de-installing Office 2007 and re-installing it with no positive results – I can’t even find Outlook.pst anywhere on my hard drive.

    Any assistance would be greatly appreciated

  125. Scot

    Just as a note to all who are saying “thanks” and “worked like a charm!”
    it would be GREATLY beneficial to everyone else using this page if you gave a shout-out, or directed your thanks @ the solution/person that worked for you.

  126. dlp

    I tried scanning the PST with scanPST.exe, it gets to phase 6 of 8 then stops. the following message appears

    an error has occured which caused the scan to be stopped. no changes have been made to the scanned file

    how do I fix this problem

  127. Christi

    I looked in all the places listed above but I do not have the scanpst.exe file. My .pst file has messed twice now and this is crucial.

  128. marie

    hi
    have read article & all of your comments but still have problem:
    all of a sudden yesterday the outlook folder linked to secondary email on outlook just disappeared, with the eamil addy; somehow i got the email back (not quite sure how/ which button worked) but not the folder with the emails in
    i regulalry delete emails so i dont think size/ over capacity is an issue

    found this site, this morning – thought I’d have a go – but cant find windows explorer (seriously its gone)
    had a go at trying to find pst anyway but only came up for word files not outlook

    umm…help anyone? I’m running windows xp, outlook 2007

  129. moe

    Christi/Marie – were you able to find the scanpst.exe? I have windows Vista, and it worked fine for me. I left clicked on start and typed scanpst.exe, but I think if you have an older version of Windows you may have to click on “start” then “run” and then type in scanpst.exe. Once I typed in the scanpst.exe Firefox Browser launched and there was a link to the scanpst.exe.LNK program. I clicked on the link and it launched the scanning program. Found lots of errors, and corrupted messages, but was able to fix many.

    Hope this helps.
    Moe 28, Feb 2011

  130. moe

    BTW guys … thanks for the scanpst.exe tips! I was able to recover a lot of my messages, but lost many as well. Big lesson learned after system crashed … no more LARGE archives! Get a 1TB external hard drive and flash drives as well. If your files are that important … the flash drives run $7-$10, and the 1TB runs about $50-$70 … your hard work and files … PRICELESS! So, back up externally and always! You’ll be glad you did!

    Moe

  131. PareshM

    Thanks much. ScanPST fixed my mailbox that was corrupted. I use it on Windows XP and Windows 7 between home and office.

  132. Tom

    Thanks a lot. This worked somehow, linking to backup files and it did restore. I would never have shot this down by myself. Thanks a whole lot. Great easy to understand.

    Tom

  133. Ersguter

    Thanks for this post. As for me I needed to find outlook.pst by checking the location in the advanced box of the personal folder.

    I found it here.

    drive:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\Outlook.pst

    OS: Win7 64
    Office 2007

  134. Terry

    I run my Outlook 2007 on a laptop using Windows 7 Professional (x64). It used to be on a laptop using Vista Home Premium (x32). Backup was to an external drive attached to a separate computer on the home network. That PC has now been removed from the network and the external drive is now attached directly to the laptop. Each time I open Outlook 2007, I get a message that ‘the path specified for the file \\B1\e\Outlook pst files\Outlook backup.pst is not valid’. The location ‘B1\e’ was the external attached to the old (now removed) PC. I cannot do anything until I point the backup to the new location.
    How do I remove the old data file location? I can see the old location in Account Settings/data files. If I click on the old location and try to remove it or to change it, I am asked if I am sure I want to remove this Outlook Data File. I say yes and am then told that the requested operation failed.

  135. Rob

    A few people above said they had the problem i’m having but i saw no answers offered. After running scanpst on a 6gb pst file (yes, i now know, break it into smaller files), i click the repair button and… i get the hourglass and Windows Task Manager says “not responding.”

    1. Is it working on the repair anyway or has it frozen?
    2. Is there another way to repair the pst?

    I’m using Outlook 2007 on XP.

    Thanks.

  136. Mark

    It has not frozen, just let it run…

    A word of caution though, you’ll be searching high and low for the files you need, so I suggest ‘showing hidden files and folders’

    Worked for me, cheers

  137. Andi

    Guys, I figured out an easy way to get your damaged PST file to work when reported corrupt and even if beyond repair after running the “Microsoft Outlook Mailbox Repair Tool”:
    1- First, run the “Microsoft Outlook Mailbox Repair Tool” which can be found on your c:/ drive (http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/outlook-help/repair-an-ost-or-pst-file-in-outlook-HA001056300.aspx)

    2- If the file is still corrupt, then download a “Trial” version of the Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair (don’t buy it!!).

    3- Run the “Trial” version of the Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair. This process takes time depending on the size of your pst file.

    4- The Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair will recover your files about 95% of the times. Results of the recovered files and folders within the PST will show.

    5- At this time, you will NOT be able to save the new repaird version of the PST file until you purchase a copy right away ($129 per user).

    6- Here is the magic!!

    Now, re-run the “Microsoft Outlook Mailbox Repair Tool”, which will also take time depending on the size of your PST file, and baaaaaaaaam! Your original PST file is fixed! You will have to click on “Repair” at the end of running the “Microsoft Outlook Mailbox Repair Tool”, which will take a few minutes to do and you will also be asked to back up a copy of the PST file in the .bk format. I suggest that you do this step.

    Now, you can open outlook using the fixed PST file.

    I think whats happening here is that the “Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair” fixes the damaged PST file even before you purchase the program and on the trial version. By purchasing the full version, you will have the chance to “SAVE” your repaired PST file.

    This worked for me twice this year already.

  138. norwalkrecycler

    My scanpst file was located here… C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12. Otherwise this worked perfectly. Thank you for your help

  139. Pete

    My outlook has stopped loading, error message says the pst files are damaged and i must run scandisc, done this a few times with it finding no errors. problem is the product key is in an email which i now cannot access. run a full repair, no change.
    any suggestions?

  140. Dillinger

    i cant open my outlook it says the PST is missing and i found where it should be but there isnt anything in it i have been working on this for over two days now, im not getting any help form Microsoft at all theres a suprise. i found the scan tool but when i nav. to where the file is it isnt there. how can i fix this? and i have uninstalled and reinstalled MS-word and that will not work. Im running win 7 and 2010 MSword there has to be a solution to this…can anyone please help?

  141. Barbara Davis

    I have the same issue Dillinger. I woke up to disciover an update had run and now my Outlook.pst folder is missing. It appears that it got renamed or something, but I can’t open Outlook now to try to fix it. I have Vista and Office 2007.

  142. Ade

    My computer broke down a couple of days ago and refuses to boot the operating system. I use Vista and Outlook 2007. I managed to recover my files by connecting the hard drive to another computer but can not locate the outlook.pst file in the usual folder (I can see the archive.pst file, but not outlook.pst) How can I locate this or recover this, please?

  143. Ade

    I forgot to mention that I have asked that it show hidden files as well.

  144. Sharyn

    Thanks for posting – saved my bacon!
    I had trouble finding my .pst file. Didnt have an advanced button on my outlook general tab, but went autoarchive tab and found where the old emails are autoarchived. Went to that folder and sitting underneath was my outlook.pst file (even though search didnt find any pst files). Fixed it with Scanpst straight away. Immediately cleaned out old emails!

  145. NarasimhaReddy

    Thanks for posting the Solution.1!!

    It’s working fine after doing this SCANPST.EXE repair tool.

  146. aragorn the strider

    Thanks mate,
    great found, you made my day.

  147. anne

    I experienced a black screen of death last night after installing several vista updates. I am not able to boot Windows Vista. Thanks to the post on this forum, I downloaded Ubuntu to recover all files on C drive. However, I saved a couple of personal pst files on D drive. I cannot find them with Ubuntu. I have a HP pavillion 6000′s laptop with windows vista home premium 64 bit preinstalled. Please help!

  148. Tanvir Ahmed

    Thanks,
    your post helped a lot. I have found another source and it says there are some catches with this tool. Says that it can’t fix files bigger than 2GB. But mine was 2.13 GB and it got real nice and done…?? What’s going on ??

  149. Brendan

    Help please?
    I have used scanpst.exe which seems to do it’s thing. Problem is the .pst file that was repaired, shows as 1.5 gig in size in explorer, but when I open it in Outlook, or try to import it, there are no items, no inbox…. nothing!! Can some please tell me where the supposed Recovered or Lost and Found Folders are??? Outlook 2010. Thanks.

  150. Brendan

    Re above… the .pst file I scanned was an Archive, not active in Outlook.

  151. Kennesaw71

    This Blog was incredibly helpful in regaining use of Outlook. Now I have copied my files, run the PSTSCAN and repaired the Outlook file which was around 196,000 KB. Outlook works again and I have the outlook.pst and the archive.pst files both in the default folder but I cannot review my older emails.

    Does this mean they are all corrupted? It still says this file is 196,000 KB large leading me to believe they are still there.

  152. Eileen

    Help – hubby’s old work laptop, running XP SP3, Outlook 2000. Outlook stopped working correctly a few weeks ago, then wouldn’t launch at all. Was getting messages to run the repair tool. I checked the size of the pst file, and it was about 7 MB over 2 gig. So I assumed that this was the problem. Followed Microsoft website instructions and first ran something that truncated a copy of the large pst file, then ran the scanpst.exe tool, which took awhile but came back and said that it found errors and it completed the repair. Launched Outlook, and tried to open the repaired pst file, but it won’t let me open ANY pst file, it says something like “you don’t have appropriate permissions…”. I have checked every single pst file, and none of them are read-only. His user account is set up as administrator. All of his pst files are in Documents and Settings/His User Name/Local Settings/Application Data/Microsoft/Outlook. I have rebooted several times, but Outlook will not let me do anything to create or open a pst file because of the permissions error. How do we fix this? Thanks.

  153. Jean-Paul Kowaliski

    Just repaired my Outlook 2007 Archive.pst folder thanks to your very clear totorial!
    I can access again my archive folders (a lot of them) after a night wasted in sterile searching
    Many many thanks! You have all my gratitude!!!
    JPK

  154. jonathan clements

    i have started running the scanpst.exe file and it gets to 2% of phase 7 of 8 but then stops responding. This has happened twice now. Any suggestions as to what I might do next please?

  155. Payton

    I ran the repair tool and did a backup of my archive. When I open the repaired version there are no messages there. When I revert to my backup version outlook says that it is not a valid .pst file. I feel like I am completely dead in the water now… any help?

  156. Steve C

    THANK-YOU……I went to one of the online services, “Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair,” yesterday and went through the ‘deal’ with them. Got to the ‘free’ repair area, and of course, it wasn’t. Perhaps the note above regarding going partially with their program helped. Don’t know. Today I found your site. What I thought was going to be an all-day chore, ended up being a relatively simple experience. Appreciate it!

  157. Sameer

    Thanks a lots Dear
    my problem is solve

  158. Puneet Kumar

    Hi, when i click on the start, a dialog box says that it is not able to recognize the file.. please help me with that.. i have my liftime data in that 11 GB pst.. please please help me with that..

    Puneet

  159. Punoot

    How to fix the dialogue:
    “if you get the not able to recognize the file”-error when using inbox repair tool, please try to repair the pst with a program called “scanpst.exe”. It should solve the probleemi ^_^

  160. Jeff

    Hi,

    I was curious about the Scanpst.exe utility and tried it out. I’m running Windows 7 64 bit with Outlook ’03. My pst file size is 81 Mb.

    When I ran the scan step of the utility, it reported that I had errors so I clicked on “repair”. It seemed to run ok, reported “fixed”. etc. When I re-launched Outlook. all of my folders, mail’s were gone. I’m not sure what happened. So I just pasted back my earlier Outlook.pst data file which I backup twice daily via an auto-scheduler, and all was fine.

    I’m not sure why the Scanpst.exe utility seemed to cause all of my folders and e-mail’s to disappear though.

    Prior to running this utility, I’ve had no Outlook issues, no errors, etc. I guess the moral of the story is the age-old one, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” :). No harm done as I’m a .pst backup fanatic :)

  161. Mark

    Thanks – that solved the problem :-)

  162. William Smith

    Hi Jeff,
    It is nice to read that you have tried to use Scanpst.exe because you were curious to know how to repair PST file. Sometime there may be chances that Scanpst.exe give an error or not recover the email in your mailbox folder due to corrupt or damaged PST file. The data in your PST file is highly corrupt or damaged due to that Scanpst.exe giving you this error. When there is serious damaged or corruption in PST file then it is better to opt for third party tool. You can try demo version of Stellar Phoenix PST Recovery Software to repair PST file to recover all emails in folder.
    Thanks!
    William Smith

  163. Jeff

    William,

    Thanks for the info on the “Stellar” software. I saved the bookmark.

    My Outlook 03 appears to be working fine. I get no errors, haven’t had any visible Outlook errors or problems in many years. I tried the Scanpst.exe utility out of curiousity but since it appeared to hide or remove all of my inbox and calendar data upon completion of the scan, I just reverted back to the earlier PST data file that I had saved moments before trying the Scanpst.exe utility.

    I guess I’m wondering, due to the Scanpst.exe utility “notebook” text report file reporting numerous errors, how my PST file can be corrupt if my Outlook appears to be working without problems.

    When I ran the utility, it reported no errors in the dialog box. It said “Repair complete”.

  164. Sina Artism

    Just go to control panel and double “email” god damn it!!!

  165. William Smith

    Hi Jeff,
    Thanks for considering my post. As per your post it is not clear which utility you have run. I guess you have run Scanpst.exe utility and PST file is still not repair. I recommend you to download Stellar Phoenix PST Recovery Software and run the demo version. In the preview mode of the software you can see recovered data from your PST file in Outlook. After that you can opt for registered version of PST Recovery Software to repair PST file completely.
    Thanks!
    William Smith

  166. Jeff

    William,

    I ran the Scanpst.exe utility from Windows 7. I’m not sure if I have any PST problem as there is no apparent issues with my Outlook ’03 application. The PST file might be fragmented or slightly curropted but it’s not affecting my Outlook operation in any way that’s visible to me. I’ve not seen any Outlook-related errors in many years while running the ’03 version.

    When I ran the Scanpst.exe utility recently, the “notepad” text reporting file did indicate detected errors within my PST file, but I’m not sure what that means as I’m having no problems at all within Outlook and I use Outlook multiple times daily.

    But it’s good to know that there are 3rd-party software utilities available that are specifically designed for PST file repair and recovery.

    Thanks again for the link to “Stellar Phoenix”.

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