Can Unicode PST exceed 2GB?

Jennifer Murphy

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
A couple of months ago, I got help here in converting my old ANSI PST to the new Unicode format. I was a little panicky because it was getting close to the 2GB limit for ANSI PST files. The Unicode PST is now over 2 GB (2,133,461 KB).

I am planning to develop an archive strategy to offload large chunks of emails to archive PST files, but haven't had a chance to get to it.

Will I be OK with a PST file that is larger than 2 GB for awhile? Outlook does seem to be running a little more slowly, but do I risk data corruption? I hope to get to the archive plan soon.

What is my new limit or how do I find out?

Thanks
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
You'll be fine as long as its the Unicode format. The new pst file size is 20 GB, it can be raised using a registry setting. My personal preference is under 5 GB, so you have a ways to go. As for slowness, try moving mail out of the Inbox and into a nothing folder in the pst - when you get over 3000 messages in the inbox, it can begin to slow it down. It's ok to have a lot of items in other folders, but the Inbox is where most people "live" and they notice when it seems to slow down. i move messages as I'm finished with them, to a folder named "Completed".
 

Jennifer Murphy

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
You'll be fine as long as its the Unicode format. The new pst file size is 20 GB, it can be raised using a registry setting. My personal preference is under 5 GB, so you have a ways to go. As for slowness, try moving mail out of the Inbox and into a nothing folder in the pst - when you get over 3000 messages in the inbox, it can begin to slow it down. It's ok to have a lot of items in other folders, but the Inbox is where most people "live" and they notice when it seems to slow down. i move messages as I'm finished with them, to a folder named "Completed".
OK, good. Thanks.

I only have about a dozen messages in the Inbox itself. I never let it get more than a couple of screen long. But I do have quite a few subfolders off of (under?) the Inbox:

Code:
Personal Folders (Unicode)
  Deleted Items
  Drafts
  Inbox
     00 ASAP
        Project 1
        Project 2
        . . .
     01 Soon
        Project X
        Project Y
        . . .
    . . .
  Junk E-mail
  . . .
Some of those subfolders have quite a few emails. I can create another top-level folder (eg Inbox2) and move them all there. Would that make a difference?
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
normally, subfolder in the inbox don't affect it - and a couple of dozen messages wouldn't slow it down. It's possible that moving the folder to the same level as the inbox will make it feel snappier.
 
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