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You are using MS Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013 or 2010 smoothly to manage your emails, messages, and other email accounts, but then you suddenly start receiving errors while opening Outlook. Errors like “unable to open Outlook PST file,” or “Outlook PST file is not a personal folder file” often become a major obstacle for users in accessing their Outlook data. In such situations, people run toward Microsoft or third-party solutions to fix the Outlook errors.

When you look for solutions related to Outlook PST repairing, you will find a lot of options to fix the PST files. But do you think all those solutions work every time? What if the reason behind your PST file corruption is something related to your system configuration?

There could be various reasons behind the Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013 or 2010 PST file corruption. And you should look for a solution based on that corruption reason. For example, the most common reasons behind PST file corruption are:

  • Due to data storage device failure
  • If the hard disk on your system has some bad sectors, and the PST file is stored in any of these sectors, chances are you won’t be able to open and read your PST files with Outlook.

  • Faulty networking device
  • As you know, a PST resides on the network server, and you try to access it via a client computer or network links. So, if any of the networking devices are not working properly or have issues, then the remote access to PST file can make it corrupted.

  • Virus or malware infection
  • Our system is always prone to virus attacks and malware, which might affect the functionality of PST files and make them inaccessible. So, having a reliable anti-virus on your system is recommended.

  • Abruptly shutting down Outlook

We often tend to shut down Outlook abnormally when we are in a hurry. But we forget that doing so makes the PST file prone to corruption errors. Thus, you should always close Outlook normally.

These are some of the reasons that define how a PST file gets corrupted. However, sometimes there are problems with the Outlook program as well, such as if the PST file size is too big, MS Outlook becomes unstable to handle it while making the file corrupted.

Now, let’s come to the main discussion – repairing corrupt Outlook 2019, 2016, or 2013 PST files. In this article, we will be covering the effective methods to repair corrupt/damaged or inaccessible PST files.

Why is the PST file repair crucial?

Outlook users may experience the following problems because of PST file corruption:

  • Loss of mailbox data: A PST file contains all the data from your Outlook mailbox, including emails, attachments, calendars, and contacts. The loss of all this data due to a corrupted PST file can be a significant setback for your work or personal life.
  • Performance issues: Outlook may also perform slowly or even crash due to corrupted PST files. As a result, using Outlook may become difficult or impossible, disrupting productivity and workflow.
  • Security problems: It is also possible for malware to exploit corrupted PST files to gain access to your computer and steal sensitive information. You must therefore repair corrupted PST files immediately to ensure the safety of your computer and personal data.
Methods to repair Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013 and 2010 PST file

Generally, there are two reliable methods that can be used to repair corrupt PST files. The first method, i.e., the manual method involves using the inbuilt utility “ScanPST,” provided by Microsoft. The second method is third-party software.

1st Method – Repair Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013 and 2010 with ScanPST

Also known as Inbox Repair tool, ScanPST allows you to repair corrupt/damaged PST files. You can access this inbuilt utility from your computer drive.

  • For Outlook 2019/2016/2013/2010
    C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\office16\
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16\
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\

    Now, follow the below steps to use the ScanPST software.

    1. Double-click on the launcher to start the ScanPST tool.
    2. Click Browse to add the PST file that you want to repair, and then click Start to scan the file.
    3. Once the scanning is complete, hit the Repair button to start the repairing process.repairing process start
    4. Note: To create a backup for this PST file, check the checkbox “Make a backup of scanned file before repairing.”

    5. It will take a few seconds for the ScanPST tool to repair the PST file. After fixing the file, you can import it to Outlook.

However, if you still face any after importing to Outlook, it means the PST file is not repaired properly. So, we have an alternative solution of Scanpst.exe for you.

What happens after the Outlook data file repair?

After the PST file repair has been completed, what happens next? Let us know below.

  • Open Outlook and navigate to the Folder pane.
  • Go to the folder “Recovered Personal Folders” or the “Lost and Found” folder.
  • There might be a few empty folders formed with this repair process. Under the “Lost and Found” folder, SCANPST.EXE will recover all the items and folders. But Outlook cannot restore all the data to their original structure.
  • Create a new Outlook data file.
  • Drag and drop the repaired data items into the newly created data file from the “Lost and Found” folder.
  • After transferring all the required data, delete the “Recovered Personal Folders” or the “Lost and Found” folder.
2nd Method-Kernel for Outlook PST

It is an advanced Outlook PST repair tool that allows you to access your corrupt/damaged PST files by repairing it quickly with smart algorithms. With this software, you can retrieve lost/deleted mailbox items and export them in different formats. Now, let’s get to the working process of this tool:

  1. After downloading the software, install it on your system.
  2. On launching the software, a pop-up window will appear on the screen. Click Browse to select the file that you want to repair, and click “Next.”
  3. Note: You can also find the specific PST files by clicking the Search button.

  4. The tool will start repairing the PST file. Once it is complete, you will be able to see the content of PST file in the left pane. You can preview the emails/items of the file by selecting any folder.
  5. To save the repaired PST file, click Save. A pop-up window will appear on the screen, select the PST file option, and click Next.
  6. The filtration window will appear on the screen, apply specific filters to the PST file, such as From, To, Subject, Item type, etc. and click Next after applying the filters.
  7. In the next step, if you want to split the PST file, then use the Split option, and then click Next.
  8. Select a location to save the recovered PST file and click Finish.
  9. A notification will appear on the screen confirming “PST file has been saved.” Click “OK” to end the process.

And that’s how you can repair the corrupt/damaged PST files for any Outlook version.


Repairing corrupt/damaged PST files could be very complicated if you don’t know the reason behind its corruption. However, with the help of the ScanPST tool, most of the PST files can be repaired easily. In case, if the ScanPST utility doesn’t work, you can always opt for Kernel for Outlook software that is specially designed to resolve PST Corruptions. It supports all MS Outlook versions: Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003, 2002, and 2000.

MVP Reviews

“We needed to import 30 GB PST data to Office 365 and used the automated process of Kernel for Outlook with 100% success. It imports corrupt PST files, irrespective of the Outlook version.”

Lewis Killorn

Lewis Killorn

“It’s the era of emails. Even critical data is communicated through emails. So, what if these emails are deleted from your email manager like Outlook? Yes, that is why Kernel for Outlook software becomes important. It helps you recover even permanently deleted emails—a simple and efficient tool.”

Justin Vendette

Justin Vendette
(Microsoft MVP)
United States Waukesha, WI

Kernel for Outlook PST Repair