How to Maintain Outlook Data Files (PST)?

How to Maintain Outlook Data Files (PST)? 

Outlook Mail Setup

Microsoft Office Outlook is one of the mostly used email programs especially when working in IT companies. We would use this to communicate with other people via email and we can even send files as attachments. However, did you know that every email and file that you send and receive takes up space? Everyday, the size would get bigger and bigger and eventually, you would notice a slowdown on your computer’s performance when using outlook. We then need to trim the size down of our data files in order to restore performance.

There are ways to resolve this and the simplest solution would be to clean-up your emails.

Delete those unneeded emails and empty your Deleted Items folder.

We receive a lot of emails on a daily basis and some of them we don’t really need. If you see an email that meets that criteria, then just delete it. Delete mails would go to the Deleted Items folder. Make sure to empty that too or you can automate this step by…

Outlook Mail - Empty Deleted Items Upon Exit

Going to options -> Advanced -> Outlook start and exit -> Tick Empty Deleted Item folders when existing Outlook

Compact your data file (PST file)

Outlook Mail - Compact PST File

Go to your control panel – > Find Mail -> Data Files -> Select your PST file; double-click on it and “Compact Now”

The next thing you can do would be to compact your data file. Deleting emails and emptying your deleted items folder only deletes the email but the space it used to occupy would still be there. Compacting would remove the space that the delete email used to occupy.

Outlook claims that it does this activity automatically in the background but I never noticed the effects so it would still be better to do it manually once in a while. If you observe your pst file as compact is running, you would see the size go down literally. I do this weekly or bi-weekly as it does take a long time (especially if you haven’t done it before or it has been a long time since you last done it).

Lastly, there’s another method that I do which would be the ScanPst method but I’ll leave that in another post. Try this out first and see if it improves the performance of MS Outlook.

Till next time,

Allen

PS: if you are not using data files (PST) then only the deletion of emails would work as we won’t have access to the exchange server data file (locally stored as an ost file).

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