Backup and restore the Outlook Personal Folders file (PST)

The personal folders file (.pst) contains all local Outlook folders, such as Calendar, Inbox, Contacts, Tasks, Sent Items, Outbox, Deleted Items, and user-created folders.

The simple way to backup/restore the .pst file is to use the Personal Folders Backup utility.

Find the location of the .pst file to allow backup of the file:
  1. With Outlook98 or Outlook2000, make sure you have View / Folders selected.
  2. Right click on Personal Folders and select Properties.
  3. Click on the Advanced button.
  4. Under Filename, it will show the path and name of the current PST file.
More info MS KB184817
More info MS KB196492
More info MS KB287070

Change the default location of the .pst file:
  1. Start Outlook.
  2. On the File menu, click Data File Management.
  3. Select the old .pst that longer should be used, and then click Remove.
  4. Click Add, select Personal Folders File (.pst), click OK, and then select the .pst file you want to use as the new primary file.
  5. Click OK.
More info MS KB257831
More info MS KB291636
More info MS KB300593
More info MS KB830336
More info MS KB832925

Using the Inbox Repair tool to repair a broken .PST file:
  1. Search for the file scanpst.exe (Usually found here drive:\Program Files\Common Files\System\Mapi\1033\scanpst.exe)
  2. Run scanpst.exe and point it to the damaged .PST file and press Start.
  3. When the scan is completed, check Make a backup of scanned file before repairing and press Repair.
More info MS KB197316
More info MS KB287497
More info MS KB329910



  1. Paul Hogan says:

    Recover your permanently deleted Outlook PST File by using the Outlook Repair software. This tool also repairs corrupt, damaged and accidentally deleted Outlook Folders. By using this tool, you can save recovered PST emails into multiple formats (PST, MSG & EML). You can break/Split the Outlook Data File size into smaller parts with the Split PST Option.

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