outlook pst

How to Repair Outlook PST File Damaged, Corrupt File

In this article, I will teach you how to repair outlook PST file damaged, corrupt. Microsoft Outlook’s Personal Folders File format—generally referred to as PST—has been a huge problem for years. Microsoft knows that which is why Outlook comes with a built-in tool referred to as the Inbox Repair tool to help you repair corrupted and damaged PST files.

Most often, simply running a damaged PST file via the Inbox Repair tool must be enough to patch it up. However, sometimes, you need to take extra action to recover lost items.

Outlook PST File Repair 

Outlook’s Inbox Repair tool is buried deep within the Microsoft Office installation folder in your computer, laptop, so you must do a little bit of digging to get to it. When you’ve located and launched the Inbox Repair tool, all you must do is select the damaged PST file to repair it.

Essential: The inbox Repair tool provides an option to create a backup of the damaged PST file. Make sure that to select it since you may need a copy to retrieve the missing data later on.

Step 1. Completely exit Microsoft Outlook.

Step 2. Open File Explorer. Depending on the version of Windows that you simply use, navigate via the following folders:

  • Windows 64-bit: LocalDisk (C:) > Program Files > Microsoft Office > root > Office16
  • Windows 32-bit: LocalDisk (C:) > Program Files (x86)> Microsoft Office > root > Office16

Suggestion: The folder paths above apply to Outlook 2016, Outlook 2019, and Outlook 365. If you use an older version of Outlook, you need to select the Office15 (Outlook 2013), Office14 (Outlook 2010), or Office12 (Outlook 2007) folder instead.

Step 3. Search the file labeled SCANPST and run it as an administrator.

inbox repair tool

Step 4. Use the Browse button to select the Outlook PST file that you simply want to repair.

When you don’t know the location of the PST file, press Windows+S to open Windows Search. Then you can search for it by name and include the .PST file extension. You can see the file location within the search results.

As a suitable, open Outlook and go to File > Account Settings > Data Files to view the PST file’s location. Make sure that to close the application after that.

Step 5. You can select Start. The Inbox Repair tool will check the PST file for the problem. That should take a while.

inbox repair tool

Step 6. Check the radio button next to Make a backup of scanned file before repairing and select Repair.

inbox repair tool

Step 7. Then select OK to finish repairing the PST file.

Open Microsoft Outlook and it should automatically start using the PST file without issues. You’ll find a copy of the corrupted PST file (with the .BAK extension) in the same location as the repaired original.

Recover Lost and Found PST Files

Sometimes, Microsoft Outlook’s Inbox Repair tool may end up repairing a severely damaged PST file. Imagine the tool fails to place any repaired items in their original folders. In that case, it’ll lump them right into a Lost and Found pst folder or a set of folders under the Recovered Personal Folders label.

You’ll be able to get well these things by creating a brand new PST knowledge file in Outlook and shifting the contents from Misplaced and Discovered or Recovered Personal Folders into it.

Step 1. Open the Home tab in Outlook. Then, open the menu next to New E-mail, point to More Objects, and select Outlook Data File.

recover personal folders

Step 2. You can select the Outlook Data File option and select OK.

recover personal folders

Step 3. You can specify a location on your laptop and pc, enter a name for the new PST file, and select OK.

Step 4. You can select the loss and found (three dots) to the Outlook window’s lower-left corner and select Folders to switch the Outlook sidebar to the Folder List view.

recover personal folders

Step 5. You can drag the contents within Lost and Found or Recovered Personal Folders into the new data file.

When you’ve done that, you’ll be able to choose to remove the Lost and Found folder or the Recovered Personal Folders data file from Outlook.

Recover Extra Items from PST

Once you notice any missing items within the repaired data file. if you can also find them inside the Lost and Found folder or under Recovered Personal Folders, you’ll be able to try retrieving them using the backup copy of the original. Basically, you attempt to import the contents within the file without duplicating any items that the Inbox Repair tool has already recovered.

Step 1. Copy the corrupted PST file backup to your desktop.

Step 2. You can change the .BAK extension at the end of the file name to .PST.


Note: If you can’t see the file extension, open the File menu in a File Explorer window and select Change folder and search options. Then, switch to the View tab and uncheck the box next to Hide extensions for known file types.

Step 3. Open the File menu in Outlook and select Open & Export > Import/Export.

import outlook

Step 4. Select Import from another program or file and select Next.

import another program

Step 5. Select Outlook Data File (.pst) and select Next.

outlook data file

Step 6. Select Browse and select the backup copy of the corrupted PST file (the one that you simply renamed).

Step 7. Select Don’t import duplicates and select Next.

import outlook data file

Step 8. Verify the box next to Include subfolders. Then, select Import folders into the same folder and pick the account or data file that you simply want to import the items into.

import folders

Step 9. Select Finish.

Once Outlook finishes importing any items, you need to manually confirm if the previously missing items are now current. If not, attempt running the Inbox Repair tool another time.

Third-Party Software Outlook PST Repair and Recovery

A cursory search online will reveal a lot of paid third-party tools that claim to repair damaged or corrupted Outlook PST files. In almost all circumstances, though, the Inbox Repair tool should be more than good enough for the job.

Only use a third-party recovery program if the Inbox Repair tool fails to retrieve your data, and do your due diligence by checking online reviews completely before spending any money on them.

Earlier than we wrap up, right here’s an interesting tidbit: the Inbox Repair tool also allows you to recover deleted items from Outlook.

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