Tuesday, July 16, 2024

    A Guide to Dealing with Corrupted PST Files

    Usually, PST files are extensively used to store calendar events, copies of email messages, and more. Now, these files become undependable and susceptible to damage or getting corrupt leading to the loss of critical business and customer data. Further, you will waste much of your time fixing corrupt PST files, a considerable toil on the resources of the IT team in your company. That’s why you need tools to deal with damaged PST files.

    According to an article published on Lifewire, you can easily restore Outlook data files to recuperate your address book objects, email messages, and additional information. 

    Every PST file is like a container consisting of a folder-like structure as well as a sum of individual items. Since email attachments are frequently large in size and a few PST files have multiple items, they become too big – numerous GB each. Then, the permitted PST file size is not more than 50 GB. In this guide, you will learn about the many aspects related to PST files, why become corrupted, and how to fix the issue.

    The way PST files are used

    When it comes to PST files, these are created using the auto-archive feature of MS Outlook, which eliminates older messages as well as data automatically. The older messages are removed from Exchange and all datais archived in a PST file locally. This Outlook feature was present by default in versions 2003 and 2007 of MS Outlook.

    PST files are beneficial when the email is moved from one point to another like when moving between email servers. Migration is also essential when a company wants to retain a different copy of the information, especially when a staff leaves the company. PST files are also extensively used because it’s an easy way for you to keep and organize old email information or data.

    When do PST files become an issue?

    To be candid, PST files aren’t powerful and are not meant for dependability or storage of loads of data for a long time. The files frequently become bigger than the permitted storage capacity and turn corrupt, especially if you access these on a network. The time needed to repair PST files takes a toll on your IT team and resources.

    With the Exchange 2020 release, MS identified the issues PST files create and came up with improvements to understand user requirements to have a different local archive for storing essential data. Though it’s still feasible to develop and work with such files in the current Outlook versions.

    Admins may deactivate the capability to use these files, however, several companies have a huge amount of PST files even today, and they frequently let them be utilized for multiple reasons. If your data files are damaged, you can use smart tools to fix corrupted PST files. These tools are easy to use and also cost-effective for businesses relying heavily on MS Outlook.

    Managing damaged PST files

    Damaged PST files are quite common today and so, you will find a plethora of free as well as premium tools to fix them. Most of the time, it is logical to repair damaged PST files, however, sometimes not when the information within the specific file might be irrecoverable.

    That’s why you need to analyze the issue first and review each PST file with related users. It will let you figure out the significance of data within the files and talk about the risks entailed when recovering information. It will also let you detect the perfect method to fix the issue for every damaged or corrupted PST file. Here are some of the best ways to repair corrupt PST files:

    Skip errors

    The best and simple way to manage damaged items in any PST file is to get rid of them. This process is fine if those items aren’t crucial to preserve from a data file. Also, if you are sure that those items couldn’t be mended or improved.

    You can import the PST file content into the mailbox through Exchange. This way, you can define the “Bad Item Limit” to overlook up to a specific number of damaged items. It would skip the items during the import method while exporting the residual items to a fresh PST file.

    You can also open the specific file in MS Outlook. The file owner or the IT admin person can use the email system to copy information that’s attainable from the damaged file into a new data file.

    Fix the PST file

    Did you know that Microsoft offers a costless “Inbox Repair Tool” called ScanPST to scrutinize the data file structure and headers? You can try to fix any issue using the tool. However, often the type of file corruption is complex and so impossible to repair. Then, in an attempt to fix one issue, it may lead to more corrupt files in a similar file that too needs to be fixed. Therefore, it makes no sense to use the MS tool over once.

    That is why several third-party tools are preferred by businesses instead of Microsoft’s free tool. These paid tools include more functionality to help admin experts in repairing damaged PST files as well as recover information from the PST files for consideration.

    It’s essential to remember that no matter what tool you choose to use, there’s a chance that the repair method may fail to retain every item from a PST file and some information is prone to lose. It’s also a smart idea to back up the required file before the commencement of the PST repair process if it fails and makes the data file not usable.

    Restore to the previous good version

    If a PST file isn’t backed up, you can restore it to the previous good or working version of that file. Then, this has some issues. That’s why it’s best to use third-party tools for the purpose.


    So, you see that there are multiple ways to repair corrupt or damaged PST files. Though you will find free MS tools, using third-party paid tools is better if you want a seamless PST file repair process.

    Maria Jones
    Maria Jones
    A Business Analyst who is always sharing business tips as well as career tips. She is passionate about the latest trends of business & implementation.

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