The PST file format for Windows was established long ago by Microsoft. These files, which stand for a “personal storage table,” are intended to hold information like calendar events, contacts, and email.
What is a PST?
PSTs are frequently accessible using native Windows applications like Windows Messaging, Microsoft Outlook, and Microsoft Exchange Client.
If you even sometimes use Windows Messaging or Microsoft Exchange, the preferred email client of Microsoft, a lost or damaged PST file might result in serious complications.
Sadly, these kinds of files sometimes have issues, but there are techniques to potentially rectify or recover them.
Recovery of PST Files
Unfortunately, even the greatest data recovery solutions might not be able to accomplish this. Here is more information about PST files, how to utilise them, and what to do if there are issues.
When a new email account is added to Outlook on a local computer, PSTs are produced automatically.
The offline PST quickly fills up with current data, including emails, contacts, and calendar details, when linked to and authenticated with a remote mail server.
Information is kept in Outlook Data Files by some Microsoft accounts, such Post Office Protocol (POP) (.pst.)
In contrast, information is kept in Offline Outlook Data Files for accounts connected to Exchange, IMAP, Outlook 365, and Outlook.com (.ost).
The latter is a more advanced format for storing emails. Outlook Group Storage Files are another option (.nst).
Different Types of Outlook Data Files
The three PST file formats, Outlook Data File (.pst), Offline Outlook Data File (.ost), and Outlook Group Storage File, are now ready for a closer examination (.nst).
Messages and other Outlook objects are stored on your computer as Outlook Data Files (.pst). Typically, POP email accounts use these files.
However, Outlook 2013 and older versions supported these formats for IMAP accounts. IMAP accounts started producing Offline Outlook Data Files with Outlook 2016 and 365. (.ost).
A.pst file may be used for a variety of tasks, including exporting or backing up data from various email accounts.
It is also able to import data such as email messages, contacts, calendars, and more.
Additionally,.pst files don’t affect the size of your mailbox on a mail server because they are saved directly on your computer. PST files also enable uploading to other email systems.
The items are only accessible on the computer where the file is kept when you save messages or other things in an Outlook Data File (.pst).
Common Issues with PST’s
- PST files can unfortunately get damaged and are occasionally the target of hackers.
- These files were often built decades ago, which increases the possibility of corruption (stability problems or unexpected access failures).
- Due to their widespread use and the fact that they are present on millions of PCs, PST files are a favourite target for criminal organisations.
- Because these data are kept locally, there is also a greater chance that they aren’t updated frequently. Maybe that’s why you came to this page in the first place.
Repair the PST
You should try to fix the PST file first. This requires scanning the file using Microsoft’s free Inbox Repair Tool (ScanPST).
Your Outlook data file’s faults may be found and fixed with this programme. The Outlook data files on your computer are examined by the Inbox Repair programme to evaluate their condition.
Use the ScanPST programme if you get errors in Outlook, are unable to view certain folders, or have other concerns about the integrity of your Outlook data file.
Microsoft notes that ScanPST doesn’t connect to or examine any data kept in an Exchange mailbox(opens in new tab). Instead, it merely searches for problems and makes an effort to fix them.
Exit Outlook and navigate to one of the following file locations to launch ScanPST:
- Outlook 2019: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\root\Office16
- Outlook 2016: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\root\Office16
- Outlook 2013: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15
- Outlook 2010: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14
- Outlook 2007: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12
Open “SCANPST.EXE” and choose “Browse” to choose the Outlook Data File (.pst) you want to scan after that. Lastly, choose “Start” to launch the scan. Click “Repair” to begin the repair procedure if mistakes are discovered.
Restart Outlook using the profile associated with the first problem once ScanPST has finished restoring your file.
Depending on your circumstance, you could notice a new folder on the Outlook Folder Pane named “Recovered Personal Folders.” Information that Microsoft couldn’t incorporate back into the original PST structure during the repair process is contained in this folder.