Read time 7 minutes

Summary: Outlook is an advanced email management application accepted worldwide by users. ANSI format is used with Outlook 2002 and older versions, whereas Unicode format is used with Outlook 2003 and later versions. For better compatibility with Outlook and improved data integrity, you must convert ANSI PST file to Unicode PST file. For easy conversion, you can use an automated tool Kernel for Outlook PST Repair.

Outlook offers two different formats for PST files named ANSI and Unicode. ANSI PST files are Outlook data files that are created with MS Outlook 97-2002 versions. The file size limit for ANSI PST is 2GB, and these files don’t support multilingual data. However, with the release of MS Outlook 2003 Microsoft started offering greater storage capacity for Outlook data files in Unicode format. The Unicode PST files in Outlook 2003 and higher versions support multilingual data too.

Why is it necessary to convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST?

Converting ANSI PST to Unicode PST in Outlook is necessary as Unicode offers several advantages over ANSI. Here’s how why it’s important:

  • Support multilingual characters: Unicode supports a vast range of characters from various languages.
  • Compatibility: Unicode is widely acceptable by different platforms.
  • For future purposes: As Unicode is a standard for modern communication, converting to Unicode ensures that your emails remain compatible with evolving technology.

How to create an ANSI PST file?

Creating an ANSI PST file is very easy. The process of creating ANSI PST files in Outlook 2016, 2013, and 2010 is almost similar. Follow the below steps to create an ANSI PST file.

  1. Launch Outlook on your system, and select “New Items” from the home tab. Go to “More items” and select “Outlook Data file.”Launch MS Outlook Application
  2. Expand the “Save as type” section, select Outlook 97-2002 Data File (*.pst), and click “OK.” In this way, you can easily create ANSI PST file in Outlook.Select Outlook 97-2002 File

Methods to convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST

Creating ANSI PST file is a simple process, it doesn’t require much effort. However, converting ANSI to a Unicode PST is a bit complicated. You can convert them by following the method given below:

Create a new PST and import data from ANSI PST

One of the easiest methods to convert an ANSI PST to Unicode PST is to create a new PST file and import data from the ANSI PST file. To do this follow the below steps;

  1. Open any version of MS Outlook and click “New Items,” go to “More Items” and select “Outlook data file.” Give a name to the file and save this file at the desired location.
  2. Now, to import data from ANSI PST, launch Outlook.
  3. Click on Open & Export >Import/Export option.Click on Open and  Export
  4. From Import and Export Wizard select Import from another program or file and click Next.Select Import and Export Option.
  5. Now, select Outlook Data File (.pst) and click “Next.”Import from Another Program
  6. Browse the ANSI PST file from the system and click “Open“.Select Outlook Data File
  7. Click on “Finish” to complete the process. The ANSI PST data has been imported to Unicode PST.Browse the ANSI PST File

Use a professional tool- Kernel for Outlook PST Repair

Another method to convert ANSI to Unicode is using a reliable third-party tool. We suggest you use Kernel for Outlook PST Repair Kernel for Outlook PST Repair tool. It is an advanced tool designed and developed especially for Outlook PST files. This tool offers some groundbreaking features that can help you in enhancing your work experience with Outlook.

Following are some features that are provided by this tool:

  • Fast and seamless recovery of PST file content, emails, and deleted email attachments.
  • Provides accuracy and data integrity at the time of data recovery.
  • Supports all Outlook versions and different web mails like Yahoo, Gmail, ALO, etc.

Following is the detailed tool process of how you can convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST:

  1. Download the tool and install it on your system.
  2. After launching the tool, a welcome window will appear on the screen. Browse the ANSI PST file and click Next.Browse the ANSI PST file

    Note: The software is compatible with all versions of Outlook including Outlook 97 and 2000.

  3. Read the instructions of the tool and click Finish to start the repairing process.Read the instructions of the tool
  4. Once the file is repaired, you’ll be able to see all its folders in the left pane of the tool.Able to see all its folders
  5. To convert/save this file to Unicode PST, click the Save button or select PST File from the saving options on the right side of the tool. A new wizard will appear on the screen, select PST file (MS Outlook) and click this file to Unicode PST
  6. Now, apply the filters on the file, such as From, To, Subject, Folder Name, Item Type, and Date Range. Click Next to proceed.Apply the filters on the file
  7. In the next step if you want to split the PST file, then select the required splitting option and click Next.Split the PST file
  8. Browse the file saving location and click Finish.Browse the file saving location
  9. Once the file is saved, you’ll receive a notification displaying New file has been saved successfully.Receive a notification on display

This way you can easily convert an ANSI PST file to Unicode PST with the help of the tool.


Sometimes, users may feel the need to convert their ANSI file to Unicode file. You can convert ASNI PST to Unicode PST manually using Outlook 2016/2013/2010 versions. However, you need expert knowledge to attempt these methods, and these methods may not be sufficient in all cases. In this scenario, we recommend an automated tool for easy conversion without any risks. Kernel for Outlook PST repair tool provides unique features to resolve all your Outlook related issues.

Kernel for Outlook PST Repair
Related Posts