Windows 7 PST file corruption??

Discussion in 'General Computing' started by martinpayne, May 27, 2015.

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  1. martinpayne

    martinpayne New Member

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    Hello,


    I use a single PST file as my main information store between home and office. The file is 100MB and has recently been compacted. At the office, we have an Exchange Server, and at home I interface with my POP. Ultimately evertything gets filed in this PST file which I carry on removeable media in order to update whichever machine I am working on. I have recently started running the PST repair utility on this file every couple of days and it almost always detects errors. Below, I have included the output from one I ran just this afternoon. The 2-part question I have is:


    1. What causes this corruption in the first place? (I have read a bit off the web and it seems that this is an accepted truth about PST files, however it seems unacceptable to me!)


    2. Given the output below, the utility tells me it is "attempting" to do a lot of stuff. Are there any unrecoverable errors in this list? The output wasn't specific enough to reassure me that it fixed everything and that it encountered no un-recoverable errors. The final pop-up confimation box does actually say that the file was repaired.


    Thanks,
     
  2. BIGBEARJEDI

    BIGBEARJEDI Honorable Member
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    Hi Martin,

    Easy question. **DO NOT IN ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, COMPACT YOUR PST FILE IN OUTLOOK!!***

    This is nearly as bad as attempting to compress your Windows C: Boot drive!!:noise: The errors are coming from the compacted PST file. Windows XP/VISTA/7/8/8.1/10 also does not deal well with the file after the Outlook utility does the compaction among other problems it creates. Also, if your laptop or office desktop computer is connected to your Exchange Server while working at the office and you use the Outlook-Exchange compaction utility to compact that PST File, it will not EVER un-compact it properly from your laptop/desktop PC at home unless it's also connected to your work Exchange Server. Additionally, most companies protect their Exchange Servers for E-mail with something called VPN (Virtual Private Network) which your company may or may not be using at the moment. If they are NOT providing VPN for remote users such as yourself to access the Exchange Server from your home location, but you are connecting in this manner, then they have a HUGE security hole which would allow people access to their Exchange Server through the connection you and other home users in your office are using every time you connect to check your E-mail. This makes it quite easy for intruders to either sneak in and read your office E-mail, along with everyone else who checks their E-mail from home the same way you do in your Company. Additionally, if you get a malicious individual or a competitor, industrial espionage today would allow that individual to simply ERASE all the information on your company's E-mail server (Exchange) and I seriously doubt that your IT Director or CIO/CEO would like that very much.

    Words to the wise.

    P.S. There are 3rd party software programs which claim to be able to compact/un-compact PST files I have seen, and are supposed to work with Exchange compliant PST files, however due to the myriad settings that Exhcange Servers can have, they somewhat work, but don't fix all errors as you are looking to do. I've used 3 or 4 of these and they vary in price from $50-$200 or so. You can attempt to run these on your compacted PST file, and repair it; but in my experience you'd be better served to simply recreate your PST file from scatch **UNCOMPACTED!!!** and start over. The other thing you can try, is to contact your E-mail administrator at your office or IT Manager and ask them to burn you a copy of your uncompacted PST file from their server backups, and drop onto a CD disc or usb flash drive for you. Not sure where you got the idea that you could compact your PST file, or who told you this, but I'm pretty certain whoever gave you this information is not a trained or licensed E-mail administrator!! If your E-mail administrator provides you the backup PST file copy and you still have errors, HE will have to keep searching for a backup copy that is undamaged or he can try to repair it. In all likelihood, he will scold you for compacting your PST file as I mentioned, and tell you to start over from scratch. Sorry for the bad news!

    Best of luck to you,
    <<<BIGBEARJEDI>>>
     
    #2 BIGBEARJEDI, May 27, 2015
    Last edited: May 27, 2015
  3. loganwatts

    loganwatts New Member

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    You can use Inbox Repair tool which is used to repair corrupted file of pst. To run Inbox repair tool fallow the steps:

    1. Click on start goes to the search then click on files or folders option.

    2. In search box type scanpst.exe.

    3. Double click on the scanpst.exe file to open the inbox repair tool.

    4. Then enter the location of Pst file and its name or browse it for the path.

    5. Then start to repair.
     
  4. BIGBEARJEDI

    BIGBEARJEDI Honorable Member
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    @loganwatts: re-read my Post, Inbox Repair tools both Outlook's and 3rd parties generally do NOT repair compacted PST file errors.

    @martin: logan attempted to give you something to try that might help, but in my experience it will not. You're welcome to try his directions, but make sure you try it on a backup copy of your PST file.

    <<<BIGBEARJEDI>>>
     
  5. Ian Murphy

    Ian Murphy New Member

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    Microsoft installs a free outlook PST repair software along with the MS Office.This utility actually tries to solve the issues by resetting and rebuilding the data file structure .But it fails in case the corruption is severe.It will end either with a partial repair or a failure.

    Some of the commonly known cases in which scanpst.exe fails are

    a) While repairing, if you are getting message “The Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool does not recognize the file C:\users\Administrator\...\Outlook.pst.No information can be recovered”.
    b) Internal errors were found in this file. They must be repaired for this file to work correctly.
    c) The file outlook.pst is not a personal folders file.
    d) If the size of PST file is less than 265 KB.
    e) If the size of PST file is greater the 2 GB.
    f) If the PST file is password protected.
     
  6. Olga Smith

    Olga Smith New Member

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    There are lots of reason behind the corruption of outlook PST files like due to virus attract, suddenly system shutdown, over size and many more. Outlook PST generally may get corrupt or damage if it exceeds it files size limit. Outlook PST have two formats ANSI PST with 2GB and UNICODE PST with 20GB file size limit.

    Most of the time Outlook PST file may get corrupted if it exceeds its file size limit and after corruption sometime it may be difficult to handle them. So here i sharing a effective post that can help you to deal with over size pst files by compressing their file size. i hopefully say that this will help you if the corruption root is size limit. Visit: compactmypst.blogspot.in
     
  7. Neemobeer

    Neemobeer Windows Forum Team
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    • Well my first suggestion would be to remove your POP mailbox and connect with IMAP. IMAP will sync across multiple devices and the data stays on the server where as POP throws it all in a PST file. If you lost that file your email is gone.
    • Don't compact PST files it will just cause problems
     
  8. BIGBEARJEDI

    BIGBEARJEDI Honorable Member
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    Good advise, neemo!! :fdance:

    BBJ
     
  9. RichM

    RichM Active Member

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    I don't know if using imap is good advice or not. I can't see the advantage to having email everywhere and kept on the server and
    right now one of my biggest problems I see is clients that never empty inboxes, Trash folders or learn how to segregate and save email effectively and imap further adds to that problem getting overloaded which hurts efficiency and speed everywhere. Most email servers have limits to how much can be stored there before they start to delete and my clients are always there at that point with every email they have ever received saved so I am inclined to use Pop3 and try to make them more efficient with their email so that they can find what they are looking for and have it run efficiently.
    I use a small server that houses my PST file and honestly have never had an issue with it having 5-6 pc's access email there and I backup the file several different ways to make sure we are safe. I might have used "scanpst.exe" a handful of times in many years of such use.
     
  10. BIGBEARJEDI

    BIGBEARJEDI Honorable Member
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    Once again, I agree with your Rich!:up: It turns out that if you have less than about 500 email accounts in Outlook Exchange, IMAP brings limited advantages over POP accounts and that's been true since 1997!! As a professional E-mail administrator for 30+ years, I know this to be true.
    The OP told us he's only got 5-6 Email accounts on his 2012 server.:blink: But, certainly IMAP isn't going to do much for him over POP for that few number of Exhchange users. In fact, Exchange is a pretty expensive overkill for any company less than about 25 users; but, that's his business. The fact that he doesn't know that PST file compaction is a bad idea tells me that this is likely to be his very first Exchange Server he's built, and he doesn't work in the IT biz or is very new to being an E-mail admin. PST compaction has been a "No-No" since Exchange 2000 when it caused drastic E-mail crashes at companies like IBM and HP that killed their corporate E-mail for hundreds of thousands of users worldwide for days.:insanity:

    BBJ
     
  11. Neemobeer

    Neemobeer Windows Forum Team
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    If this is on an exchange server then they should really be using Outlook Anywhere unless they have users connecting with something other than Outlook and ActiveSync for mobile.
     
  12. BIGBEARJEDI

    BIGBEARJEDI Honorable Member
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    @neemo: Not familiar with Outlook Anywhere; is this a client-side version of Exchange lite web-portal? The Junior College I used to teach at and some of my AdultEd schools used this a few years back.
    Thanks-BBJ
     
  13. Neemobeer

    Neemobeer Windows Forum Team
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    It is a Outlook-Exchange secure connection protocol that can be used for external connections to exchange without any kind of VPN.
     
  14. mohanmarks

    mohanmarks New Member

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    To get rid of PST corruption issues, you can use Inbox Repair Tool (Scanpst.exe). It is an inbuilt application of MS Outlook that helps you to fix PST errors within seconds. You can also try a third party Outlook PST repair software to repair corrupt PST files. The software enables you to fix PST error issues and recover lost data from corrupted PST files without any hassle.
     
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