HomeEditor's PickHow To Repair PST Files In Under 5 Minutes Like A Pro

How To Repair PST Files In Under 5 Minutes Like A Pro

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In this post, we will show you how to repair PST files in under 5 minutes like a pro.

Information from Outlook 365 account, Outlook.com, IMAP accounts, and Exchange accounts are stored in PST (Personal Storage Table) format. This information can be email messages and attachments, contacts, calendar information, or even tasks on your computer.

Like every other file, PST files can be damaged or corrupted by various factors including, malware, power outages, incorrect system recovery, device failure, shortage of storage space, or bugs in the PST file. 

In such instances, users will likely experience any of the following error messages: 

  • ‘The current PST file is in use.' 
  • ‘Cannot open our default email folders.' 
  • ‘Cannot start Microsoft Outlook.' 
  • ‘Outlook Send Receive Error 0x800ccc13.' 
  • ‘Outlook PST file is not a personal Folder File.' 
  • ‘Data error.' 
  • ‘The Operation timed out, waiting for response…’

Microsoft includes a built-in PST file repair tool to help users resolve simple PST issues, but in dealing with more complex PST faults, you might need a much more advanced PST file repair tool.

In this post, you will learn how to quickly resolve any PST issue like a Pro in less than five minutes.

Issues you will most likely experience with PST file might include the following: 

  • Damaged or corrupted Outlook PST file which can be due to any of the following reasons:
    • New PST File Creation 
    • Large PST file size
    • Malware attack
    • Installation or use of unverified software and tools
    • System issues
    • File sharing on unsecured networks
  • An MS Outlook program is still running in the background.
  • Running other conflicting software or add-ons such as Adobe Reader, Adobe Flash, communicator, Lync, or Ucmapi.
  • Running a backup of a large PST file.
  • The antivirus program may be scanning the desired PST file at the time of use.

If you’re experiencing any of the PST issues listed above, try the following steps to resolve such issues.

READ ALSO: Data Recovery Guide: Strategies, Tools, and Best Practices

How to Repair PST Files

Solution 1: Use Stellar Recovery tool for Outlook

Use Stellar Recovery tool for Outlook

The Stellar PST Recovery tool for Outlook is one of the best PST file recovery tools that can perform the following functions and more: 

  • Recover email messages, attachments, contacts, calendar, etc. from corrupt PST folder, 
  • Repair corrupted or damaged PST files
  • Show a preview of your mailbox to enable you to choose which PST file to recover
  • Splits and compacts PST file
  • Export repaired PST to Office 365

Follow the steps below to use the Stellar Recovery tool to fix any PST-related issue.

  1. Download and install the Stellar Recovery for Outlook
  2. Run the Stellar recovery tool
  3. Select Outlook PST from the home tab
  4. Use the ‘Find' feature to find the PST file or Click ‘Browse' to select the PST file from its location.
  5. Click Repair to fix the faulty PST file.
  6. Save the repaired PST file in a folder of choice.
  7. Select ‘PST’ format from the pop-up that appears on the screen
  8. Click ‘OK' to save the recovered PST file in PST file format.

Solution 2: End all related tasks that might be running in the background

Such tasks might include ‘Communicator, ‘Lync,’ ‘Outlook,’ and ‘UCMAPI.’ 

To end the tasks listed above, follow the steps listed below.

  1. Launch the ‘Task Manager’ tool by pressing the following keys together on your keyboard: ‘Shift, Ctrl, and ESC’ keys.
  2. Right-click on related tasks listed above that might be running, select ‘End Task’ from the command prompt, or click on ‘End task at the bottom right of the ‘Task Manager.’

READ ALSO: 5 Top Apple Mail Alternatives For iPhone And Mac

Solution 3: Troubleshoot Outlook by launching in Safe Mode

Troubleshoot Outlook by launching in Safe Mode

To launch and troubleshoot MS Outlook in Safe Mode, follow the steps below 

  1. Hold down the ‘Windows key and R’ together on the keyboard to launch the ‘Run' dialogue
  2. Type or copy outlook.exe /safe and paste in the run dialogue and click ‘OK.'
  3. If MS Outlook starts without displaying error messages, then it is conflicting with other programs like UCMAPI, LYNC, etc.
  4. Disable the add-ins one after the other while attempting to launch MS Outlook
  5. Open MS Outlook and click on File >> ‘Options’ >> ‘Add-Ins’ and click on ‘Go’
  6. Uncheck the Add-Ins one after the other while attempting to launch your email in MS Outlook until you find the defaulting Ad-in
  7. Click on ‘Remove’ to remove the ‘Add-In’ and relaunch your mailbox in Outlook

Solution 4: Run ‘ScanPST,' an Outlook repair tool

Below are file paths for locating the SCANPST tool in different versions of Microsoft Office.

To locate the location of the SCANPST.exe, 

  1. Open ‘Local Disk (C:), 
  2. Open the ‘Program Files’ folder 
  3. Copy and paste ‘SCANPST.exe in the ‘Search Programs File' search bar.
  4. Click on the blue arrow, or hit the ‘Enter' key on your keyboard.
  5. Click on ‘SCANPST to launch the PST repair tool.
  6. Enter the name of the file you want to scan in the space provided or click on ‘Browse’ to select the PST file from its location
  7. Click ‘Start' to begin the scan process.
  8. After completing the scan, tick the ‘Make a backup of Outlook PST' checkbox to initiate the repair process.
  9. Wait for the repair process to start.
  10. You get a message saying, ‘Repair process completed.'

Here are more file paths for locating scanPST.exe in the local disk ‘(C:): 

Office 365 / Outlook 2019 / Outlook 2016  

  • Windows OS (32 & 64 bit): C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\office16\
  • Windows OS (32 bit): C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16\ 
  • Windows OS (64 bit): C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16\

Outlook 2013 

  • Windows OS (32 bit): C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office15\ 
  • Windows OS (64 bit): C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\

Outlook 2010 

  • Windows OS (32 bit): C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\ 
  • Windows OS (64 bit): C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\

Outlook 2007 

  • Windows OS (32 bit): C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\ 
  • Windows OS (64 bit): C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12\

A Final Word… 

Using any of the following solutions I have detailed above will take you less than five minutes to resolve any PST-related issue like a pro. 


Chandra Palan
Chandra Palan
Chandra Palan is an Indian-born content writer, currently based in Australia with her husband and two kids. She is a passionate writer and has been writing for the past decade, covering topics ranging from technology, cybersecurity, data privacy and more. She currently works as a content writer for SecureBlitz.com, covering the latest cyber threats and trends. With her in-depth knowledge of the industry, she strives to deliver accurate and helpful advice to her readers.


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