Microsoft Office Outlook is one of the best and most popular email client applications developed by Microsoft. It is mainly used as an email application, but it also offers multiple functions such as: calendar, task manager, contact manager, note taking, diary, and web browsing. MS Outlook is a popular email client application, therefore it is commonly used in large organizations to send and receive emails and also to manage them. But sometimes MS Outlook may create some problems or it may work abnormally. The main reason behind this unexpected behavior of MS Outlook is corruption. The data file, which stores all email messages and other MS Outlook mailbox items, has a size limitation issue. Outlook data file is known as PST or Personal Storage Table. There are two types of PST files: ANSI and Unicode. ANSI is used in older versions of MS Outlook and has a size limit of 2 GB. While Unicode is used in newer versions of MS Outlook and has no size limit i.e. up to 20GB. In the higher version of MS Outlook, the size limit is increased by 50 GB. If a PST file exceeds the size limit (mentioned above), it may become inaccessible or corrupted. You cannot open an ANSI PST file in newer versions of Outlook and a Unicode PST file in earlier versions of Outlook. If you try something like that, your PST files become more susceptible to corruption.
Apart from this, a PST file can also get corrupted due to various reasons such as: virus attack, abrupt system shutdown, sudden power failure, unexpected Outlook cancellation, storage media malfunction, hard drive with bad sectors, human errors and many more. . When opening a damaged PST file, you will receive an error message that the file is damaged or unusable. Below are some of the common error messages that may appear at the time of corruption:
- “Errors have been detected in the Outlook.pst file.”
- “The file Outlook.pst could not be found.”
- “Outlook.pst is not a Personal Storage Folder file.”
- “PST has reached the maximum size limit.”
Whenever you face these errors, your Outlook PST files mean that the files are corrupted and unusable until you fix them. You must repair the files, otherwise you will not be able to use them anymore. There are two effective ways to repair corrupt PST files:
SCANPST.EXE or Inbox Repair Tool:SCANPST.EXE is an inbox repair tool for corrupted MS Outlook data files. It scans a corrupt .pst file, resolves the corruption issues and repairs it within a couple of minutes. SCANPST.EXE is installed at the time of installation of MS Office or MS Outlook. It is found here in these places:
- In Microsoft Outlook 2013: C:Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice15
- In Microsoft Outlook 2010: C:Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice14
- In Microsoft Outlook 2007: C:Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice12
- In Microsoft Outlook 2003: C:Program FilesCommon FilesSystemMSMAPI
- In MS Outlook 2002 or XP: C:Program FilesCommon FilesSystemMAPI
Once you have found the SCANPST.EXE file, double click on it. But before this, make sure that your MS Outlook application is closed i.e. not running on your system. You need to follow these simple steps to repair the corrupt file using SCANPST.EXE:
- double click SCANPST.EXE.
- Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool pop-up window.
- Click on Surf to select the corrupt PST file from your system directory.
- now click on Start to start the scan for corrupt files.
- Be patient. It may take some time (scanning time depends on the size of your file).
- Click on Surf to select the location of this new repaired file.
- Box “Back up the scanned file before repairing” is checked by default. Keep it checked if you want to create a backup copy of the file.
- now click on Repair to repair the scanned file.
- Once the file is repaired, you will receive a message “Complete reparation”.
Now you can verify the repaired file. But sometimes SCANPST.EXE cannot repair the corrupt files. This can happen that your SCANPST.EXE does not report any error in the corrupted file, but your MS Outlook program still complains when you try to open it. Apart from this, SCANPST.EXE cannot recover the email messages that were accidentally deleted by the Outlook user. During recovery, sometimes SCANPST.EXE may lose a large amount of data from a corrupt PST file. In all these critical situations, when you are not satisfied with the result of SCANPST.EXE, you can try some third party PST recovery software. A third party PST repair or recovery application is the best solution to fix MS Outlook file corruption.
Third Party PST Recovery Tool: Third party PST recovery tools are specially designed to repair high level corruption of Outlook PST files. There are various software companies that offer such recovery applications at a very affordable price. When you search for some advanced PST recovery applications on Google, you get a wide range of recovery tools for corrupt PST files. Finding which software application is the best might be a big challenge for you. In such situation, you can refer to the demo or trial version of this recovery software. The demo or trial version works very similar to the full software and helps you verify it before you buy it. It repairs your corrupt file and recovers your data like a full software application does. Then it shows you the preview of the recovered data. If you are satisfied with the preview, you can get its full version to save the recovered data. In general, these recovery software applications are very safe and easy to use. Any technical and non-technical user can use them without the need for additional technical knowledge. Third party PST repair or recovery software is the best solution for MS Outlook users especially when SCANPST.EXE cannot repair the corrupted files.