How to Repair Outlook Data Files (PST) via Scanpst?

How to Repair Outlook Data Files (PST) via Scanpst?

ScanPst Screen

In my last post, I discussed on how to maintain your outlook data files (pst). In this post, I will discuss on how to repair your outlook data files (.pst) in case they get corrupted and you dread the loss of your emails (especially if you don’t have a recent backup).

First things first…

How do they get corrupted in the first place?

  1. Power Loss – when your computer suddenly dies while outlook is open.
  2. Improper Exit of Outlook – Outlook hanged and you had to manually terminate it.
  3. Very Large Data File – Although Outlook now supports large file sizes (e.g. 50gb), it is scary to put all your emails in one basket pst.
  4. Incomplete transfer – Moving your pst from place to place; if the connection gets cut then the .pst also gets cut!
  5. Operating on large quantities of email – Working on a year’s worth of email might needed lesser clicks but it needs more processing power and more burden to outlook. It may possibly hang ..and we go to # 2.

So now that you know what causes them to be corrupted, how do we fix them?


ScanPST or better known as the Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool is a neat little tool that can repair your problematic data files. It doesn’t always provide a 100% success rate and you may need to run it repeatedly on your .pst file to fix it; but it’s better than nothing.

You can find ScanPst here. (XX would be the version number of your installed Microsoft office

  • C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\OfficeXX
  • C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\OfficeXX

The interface is simple.

  1. Run the program
  2. Direct it to your .pst file
  3. Click Start
  4. Optional step (it will prompt you to create a back-up file)
  5. Repeat until the logs says it doesn’t find any errors anymore.

The only problem here would be if you have a lot of .pst files and it doesn’t completely remove all errors which means that you have to run it again on the same .pst file. Luckily, there’s a solution via Automation. Let’s say hello to…

CscanPST (ScanPst Automation)

CscanPst aims to automate the clicks needed to start scanning so you can simply set and forget. Initially, I found it here and it got improved here via a GUI.

The instructions would be:

  1. Download the file from
  2. Extract the files on the same folder where your outlook data files are
  3. Run ScanPSTAll.Cmd
  4. Cscanpst GUI Interface

    Enter max attempts (how many times to try to repair the pst file).
    It will then show you a list of PST files to fix.

    Tip: Do this on a weekend or a time where you don’t need immediate access to your emails. This would take hours especially if you have many pst files and have a lot of errors to fix. 

  5. After it starts running, just leave it and after it finishes scanning everything, notepad will pop-up with the log.

That’s it!

Till next time,


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