Recover PST files without losing your important mailbox contents

Outlook users often witness problems while accessing their mailbox items like during reading the emails, selecting the messages or moving the emails to a different folder. The most common symptoms being that MS Outlook momentarily stops functioning or the screen hangs or some error message is flashed. A prominent cause can be due to the increased store size of PST files as they approach the limit of 2 GB. For later versions of MS Outlook including 2007 and 2010, such problems can occur when the size of PST files becomes more pronounced, say 4 GB or even larger. Such problem could also mean loss of mailbox items, in which case it becomes necessary to recover PST file and restore the mailbox contents.

Actually what happens is that as the number of items in the PST size increases; the frequency of data being written in the hard drive also increases, giving rise to PST file corruption issues. Since, the problem is increase in PST file size, the solution must be to fix the size limitation problem and recover PST file content, which are susceptible to corruption. There are native methods to resolve this problem of PST size limitation, some which are discussed below:

Reduce the size of your Outlook mailbox

By reducing the size of the Outlook mailbox, the size of PST file will automatically decrease. To bring down the size of your mailbox, you can (a) delete items from your mailbox and (b) archive the items of your mailbox in more than one PST files. Both these can be done manually by making use of features such as the Mailbox Cleanup wizard and the AutoArchive option. However, this solution is not very appropriate if you do not want to delete important messages and items; or the items you wish to archive are corrupted.

Extend PST limit by using “Allow upgrades to large tables” feature

MS Outlook offers a feature called “Allow upgrades to large tables”, with which the limit of the number of messages per folder and the number of folders per file can be increased. This feature allows an increment of up to 64,000 messages per folder and up to 16,000 folders per file. This feature basically updates the PST file header to allow more messages and more folders. But, what if there is corruption in the PST header and the feature gives error or fails to perform the required action. In that case, it will be mandatory to first recover PST file and then use this MS Outlook feature.

Go for an online mode profile

An online mode profile is a better option when compared to a cached mode profile, simply because cached profiles use OST files to locally store the mailbox system’s hard disk. A large mailbox in cached mode profile would mean large size of the OST files, which can pose issues while synchronization with the PST files upon return to online work.


So we see that there are some conventional methods of dealing with the problem of PST size limitation that further gives rise to performance issues with Outlook. However, all these methods are only applicable when the PST files are uncorrupt with all their contents intact. In situations when the PST file itself is damaged, the first step should be to recover PST file and then think of reducing its size. The in-built utilities of MS Outlook, ScanPST.exe and PST2GB.exe are not always effective with their own sets of limitations. Kernel for Outlook PST Repair, a third party tool, is optimum to recover PST files from corruption and also deal with the size issue without compromising on important mailbox items.

For more information please visit Recover PST Files.