Though the Personal Storage Files or PST files have proved to be a very effective storage format for Microsoft Outlook, it is very vulnerable and suffers corruption quite easily. Our article looks at ways in which we can fix problems in Outlook PST file using Outlook tools and third-party applications.
One of the biggest advantages of the Microsoft Outlook application is the centralized storage system that it uses to store all the email messages and folders, respective attachments, contact lists, calendar items, journal entries and other Outlook items. All these items are stored in a binary format, which does not make them human-readable; on the other hand, it certainly makes search and access of specific Outlook items much faster. If you install Outlook with the default settings, then there will be no separate storage file for each folder such as ‘Inbox’, ‘Sent’, ‘Drafts’, etc. Instead, all these standard email folders will be stored in a single Outlook.pst file. This PST file will contain all the necessary information about the various folders, sub-folders and items stored in them allowing for quick display and retrieval. If you would like to have a backup copy of all the Outlook data, you need to copy all the relevant PST files for an effective Outlook recovery.
Taking back ups of the PST file is important because the PST files are very notorious for their vulnerability to factors such as sudden power surges, virus attacks, software problems and malfunctions in the hard disk. Any of these factors could quickly cause corruption in the PST file. This storage format certainly has great functionality but gets damaged so quickly that a very large number of repair utilities have sprung up that claim to effectively restore the data from a damaged PST file. Microsoft Outlook for instance, provides the Inbox Repair Tool/Scanpst.exe to correct small-scale corruption issues with the PST file. However, if the file is heavily damaged, you may have to turn to specially designed repair tools such as DataNumen Outlook Repair from DataNumen to carry out a quick Outlook recovery.
The latest in the Outlook series is Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 and is believed to be one of the most stable versions. Yet, it is not perfect and you do need to be aware of a tool that can be used to fix the PST file if it becomes corrupt. If you face performance issues with Outlook, you could try running it in the safe mode to identify the problem. If there is no obvious reason why Outlook 2010 is not running properly, you could be dealing with a corrupt PST file. If the corruption levels in the file are still low, you could fix it using the Outlook tool – scanpst.exe. Surprisingly, this tool is not made easily available to the users and you will have to search for it using the Windows search tool. You may find it in the C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14 folder. To start the Outlook recovery process, start this program, locate the PST file that you suspect of corruption and click on ‘Start’. Once the errors have been identified, you simply need to click on ‘Repair’ for the recovery process to be complete. If this tool proves unsuccessful in repairing the PST file, you will certainly be able to repair it using DataNumen Outlook Repair without any problems.