How to Fix “Can’t move the items. The item could not be moved” Error in Outlook PST files

Find out the likely causes of Microsoft Outlook error “Can’t move the items. The item could not be moved.” and various procedures for fixing it.

How to Fix “Can’t move the items. The item could not be moved” Error in Outlook PST files

Users may experience the “Can’t move the items. The item could not be moved.” error when trying to transfer PST files from one folder to another. There are various reasons that can cause this error and several procedures for fixing it as described below.

What causes this error

Once PST files become corrupt, it is not easy to access them. This means that you cannot perform normal operations on your Outlook mailbox. Corrupt PST files can result from several causes including an abrupt shutdown of a machine while MS Outlook is still running or if your computer crashes.

It’s also possible that the files you are trying to move already exist in the destination folder. If other applications are accessing the file you are transferring, this may trigger the error too. For example, if an antivirus is scanning the target files, you’ll be unable to move it.

Approaches to fixing this error

  1. Close every application that’s accessing your PST files

If other applications were accessing the files, closing them allows you to perform your tasks with no hindrance. To accomplish this, restart your computer. This action shuts down most of the computer processes in a session. Now you can try to access your files. Physically, inspect the destination folder to confirm whether the files you wish to move could be already there.

Moreover, exclude your antivirus from scanning Outlook files. This is because apart from preventing you from accessing some Outlook files, the antivirus mistakes your mailbox data for malware. Consequently, there is a high probability of corrupting your files.

  1. Update your antivirus and scan your computer

However, there is a possibility that a malicious application could be targeting your mailbox data. Therefore, update your antivirus and scan your computer for viruses. If a virus infection caused the problem, this should fix it.

  1. Consider a manual process for repairing your PST files

Let’s say the above approaches don’t work, consider repairing your PST file with the Scanpst.exe tool. Close MS Outlook and check through the program files for the inbox repair tool. Once you launch the repair tool, browse for your PST file and click the ‘Start’ button. Wait for the scanning results and implement the prompts. Essentially, the tool should reveal some prompts that you may execute to fix the errors it picks during scanning.

  1. Use specialized data recovery tools

Sometimes, the inbox repair tool doesn’t restore corrupt PST files. This is where tools such as DataNumen Outlook Repair come in handy.  With an average recovery rate of 95.7%, this tool comes out as the best option when compared with other applications in its class. It’s handy when repairing corrupt PST files and recovering deleted objects such as emails and contacts.

DataNumen Outlook Repair

Using this application is simple. Just download it for free from the company website. But you’ll be required to purchase a license in case you are an enterprise client. Install the software and launch it. Close the MS Outlook and other applications that could still be gaining access to your PST file. On the ‘Repair’ tab, find the input and output parameters, then click start.

The progress bar helps to estimate how far the recovery process. After the completion of the procedure, a pop-up message showing how many items it recovered will appear.  You can now access your files with no hitches.

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