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Most users prefer to keep their system drive free from unnecessary clutter caused by files and documents. Recently, we encountered a common issue involving Outlook OST files that seem to regenerate even after deletion, occurring each time a user logs into their account. The accumulation of multiple OST files can lead to performance slowdowns in the Outlook application and the overall system.
OST files, short for Offline Storage Table files, serve as local replicas of Exchange Server data stored on the user’s system. These files enable users to access their Outlook data even when they’re offline, without an internet connection. The beauty of OST files lies in their ability to automatically sync and update with the Exchange Server data as soon as an internet connection is reestablished. Therefore, any issue related to OST files can directly impact a user’s ability to access critical elements like emails and contacts when disconnected from the Exchange Server or during network outages. Additionally, these issues can have an indirect impact on the overall system’s performance.
In such scenarios, it’s crucial for users to take immediate action to resolve the problem of multiple OST files and ensure uninterrupted access to their essential data.
Several factors can contribute to the occurrence of multiple OST files, including:
Users can encounter this issue in various situations, such as a corrupted Outlook profile, issues with their local Active Directory (AD) account, multiple IMAP account profiles, corruption, or compatibility problems with network OST files. It’s essential to identify these potential causes and then implement the provided remedies for the common problem of ‘Two OST files in my Outlook’ experienced by many users.
Follow these Solutions
If you’d like to address the issue of additional OST file generation every time you log in to the Outlook application, you can follow a series of manual actions or procedures that we will explain step by step.
To resolve the problem of OST file regeneration, consider removing unnecessary or additional Outlook profiles within the application. Follow these steps after closing your Outlook application (if it’s currently open):
An underlying cause of this issue may be OST file corruption, which you can manually repair using scanPST.exe for various Outlook versions. Below, you’ll find the default path locations for this built-in repair utility in different Outlook versions.
You just need to open the application from above folder paths, browse and add the corrupt OST file for repair.
If you’re seeking an alternative solution, the recommended approach is to save the primary OST file as a backup in PST format before removing any additional OST files. When it comes to manual solutions, there are two free methods available for converting OST to PST files: one involving a user-interface approach and another utilizing the archiving feature.
It’s important to note that manual solutions always require a connection to the Exchange Server and may not address orphaned or corrupted OST files adequately. Manual conversion processes also come with limitations such as file size constraints, filtering restrictions, and the risk of data loss.
If you want to avoid these risks and ensure a seamless OST conversion, we recommend using Kernel for OST to PST Converter, one of the most popular tools in this category. This tool simplifies the conversion process by only requiring your OST file and supports conversion to various file formats. Additionally, it offers the option to migrate your OST data to Exchange and Office 365 destinations. Advanced filtering options are available for precise OST to PST conversions.
We encourage you to try out the demo version of the tool to see how it suits your needs before making a final decision.
The OST file plays a crucial role in facilitating connections between Exchange Server and Outlook applications. As such, any issues associated with it, such as the presence of two OST files in Outlook, should be resolved promptly. In this article, we’ve provided solutions that encompass Outlook profile management, OST recovery, OST repair, and conversion methods. Finally, we’ve recommended the best tool for OST conversion.
A- Deleting the OST file does not necessarily mean losing all your emails. When an OST file is deleted, the account can still be synchronized with the Exchange Server & this means that users can still retrieve all their Outlook data back.
A- Each PST file contains data for a specific email account. If you have more than one email account set up within Outlook, you will have multiple PST files. This is a convenient way to keep your emails organized & easily accessible.