How to Recover Outlook Mailbox from Corrupt PST?

Corruption is always bad, isn’t it? Most of the time, corruption causes data loss which can bring any computer user to tears. Almost no computer file immune to corruption. Outlook PST file is prone to corruption due to many reasons. Have you ever faced Outlook corruption? You’re lucky if you haven’t faced it yet. If you face corruption in PST files, how would you recover Outlook mailbox? Just keep reading this post for some useful information…

Which is the most popular email client program for Windows users? More than 95% computer users will answer Microsoft Outlook, and I’ll not be surprised. In these days, every 90 users out of 100 are using Outlook client. Do you know why? Why is Outlook so popular? Why has it become #1 choice for any desktop user? If you’re thinking that Outlook is just an email client, you’re absolutely wrong! Microsoft Outlook is an email client that works as a personal information manager. It not only provides you emailing feature, but also includes calendar, task manager, contact manager, note taking, journal, and web browsing. Outlook client comes as a part of well-known Microsoft Office suite as well as a separate application.

Microsoft Outlook client

Why Outlook for organizations?

Today, email has become the primary mode of communication at work. And Outlook is one of the highly preferred email clients of all time. If you’re looking for an effective communication at work, Outlook best fits your needs. Outlook is commonly used by many individuals as a stand-alone application. But in organizations, it can work with Microsoft Exchange Server and Microsoft SharePoint Server for multiple users. Via Exchange Server/SharePoint Server, Outlook users can easily access shared mailboxes and calendars, Exchange public folders, SharePoint lists, and meeting schedules.

12 reasons why users prefer Outlook over Gmail at work

Corruption is the major drawback

Microsoft Outlook client provides you many useful features, no doubt. But it has a major drawback, and that’s corruption. Being an Outlook user, you must know that Outlook stores everything in an Outlook data file, PST aka personal storage table. But do you know that Outlook saves PST files into two different formats?

In Outlook 2002 and earlier versions, you get ANSI format. In Outlook 2003 and later versions, you get Unicode format. The only difference between these two formats is the size limitation, i.e. the actual capacity for storing mailbox content. If you’re using ANSI format, you can only store up to 2 GB of mailbox content. Or if you’re using Unicode format, you can store up to 20 GB of mailbox content with no problem. Whenever PST file reaches to its maximum size, it creates troubles for Outlook users. The Outlook client starts hanging or crashing more than often. Also, an oversized PST file can degrade Outlook performance. But when PST file crosses its size limit, it becomes prone to corruption.

There are some other reasons as well for Outlook corruption, such as virus attack, unexpected system shutdown, abruptly or forcefully Outlook cancellation, storage media failure, software collision or malfunction, and sometimes human errors.

Why backup is important…

You can’t access or open a corrupt PST file at any cost until unless you repair it. If you have a valid backup file for your PST, you can easily restore your mailbox content from it. If you don’t take a backup, you must start it right now. It’s very easy to take a backup of Outlook PST files. But if you don’t have any backup or if it’s corrupt, you must repair PST file or recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file.

Repair PST file using scanpst.exe

Microsoft provides the Inbox Repair tool, commonly known as scanpst.exe utility, to repair PST file. It comes as a built-in repair tool with Microsoft Outlook client. First, you need to locate the executable file of scanpst.exe before you can run it on your system. The location is different for almost every version of Outlook. Once you successfully locate the scanpst.exe file, double-click it and follow the steps shown below:

The Inbox Repair tool

Step 1: The Microsoft Inbox Repair Tool window will launch on your system.
recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file
Click Browse and select the corrupt PST file.

Step 2: The selected PST file is listed in the edit box.
recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file
Now click Start to start scanning the corrupt PST file.

Step 3: The scanning process is being conducted on your system.
recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file
Please wait until the process is successfully completed.

Step 4: The corrupt PST file has been scanned successfully. You can see the report.
recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file
Now click Repair to repair PST file.

Step 5: Within a few seconds, the scanpst.exe utility will repair PST file.
repair PST file

Limitation: The Inbox Repair tool, commonly known as scanpst.exe utility, can repair PST file but only if corruption is minor. It can fix header corruption issues. But in case of severe corruption, it may fail or not work. In such situation, you should use PST Recovery software to recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file.

Recover Outlook Mailbox using PST Recovery software

PST Recovery software is smart enough to handle any level of corruption, be it minor or severe. It can scan corrupt PST file for errors and resolve them with ease. Via this software, you can repair PST file and recover Outlook mailbox from corrupt PST file. It can successfully restore almost everything from corrupt PST file, such as email messages, contacts, calendars, tasks, notes, journals as well as attachments. Download its free demo to check what you can actually recover from corrupt PST file before you can pay for the software.

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