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How To Back Up A PST File Oulook Tips

Obviously since this whole website is about restoring corrupt and damaged PST files it's obviously a good idea if you make it a habit to back up your PST files on a regular basis just in case you can't get your data back for some reason. The fact that all of your email, contacts, calendar entries, journal entires and more are stored in the single .pst file makes it a very precarious situation indeed.

Thankfully, backing up your PST file is relatively easy!

1.) First, locate your PST File:

Ensure that all hidden files and folders are shown.

If you haven't changed your default location of your .pst file, they are as follows:

Outlook 2007 and earlier on Windows XP:
C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook\
Outlook 2007 and earlier on Vista and Windows 7:
Outlook 2010 on Windows XP:
C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\My Documents\Outlook Files\
Outlook 2010 on Vista and Windows 7:
C:\Users\%username%\Documents\Outlook Files\

2.) Copy The PST To A Secure Location

Once you've found your PST file, backing it up is as simple as copying it to a secure location such as an external hard drive. Here are some examples of secure locations:

  • An External Hard Drive
  • A Separate Hard Drive on the same computer
  • A USB Drive
  • CD RW Disk
  • Secure Online Storage

3.) Restore Your PST File

It won't do you any good if you don't know how to restore your PST file if it goes bad.

If the PST file becomes corrupted or unreadable, Outlook may prompt you to run scanpst.exe. If this or the other solutions on this website don't work and you have a backup of your PST, then, close outlook and restore that backup from your storage media to C:\My Documents\Outlook (or whatever drive you may have stored the My Documents folder on). Once you start Outlook, you will be prompted to locate the PST file. Browse to the location you just put it in and select the backup PST file.


For more detailed information please visit How To Outlook Backup And Restore

After you back up your PST file, then you should ensure that you back up all of your files. We suggest either using a cloud backup solution or an external hard drive. Both backup solutions are great, just so long as long as you do something.

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