Moved pst to new computer, now Gmail not coming into Outlook


New Member
Outlook version
Outlook 365 64 bit
Email Account
Config: Outlook 365, Windows 11, Gmail as POP.
Had a computer crash in Feb. 2023 but I had a good backup of the pst file. Now 6 months later I’m setting up Outlook email on a new laptop with the old pst. Outlook properly displays all old emails through Feb 2023. And I’m able to send new messages.
On Send/Receive, the status row at the bottom shows something like “Receiving message 23 of 375 (448 KB of 19.5 MB).” After it completes, the number of unread messages in Inbox has increased, and the pst is a bit larger. But new messages are nowhere to be found in Inbox or subfolders. Each time I do another Send/Receive, more messages again appear to come in, but still they are not to be found.
No, searches on Subject or From do not turn up any messages from Feb 2023 to present.

Not certain what you mean by a “search folder for unread messages”. When I did the searches (from the Inbox top level folder) , I specified “Search subfolders”. On the Outlook folder tree to the left of the Inbox, I don’t see any folder names for unread messages. If I turn on the inbox filter “Unread Mail”, it shows a lot of unread messages, but none dated more recently than Feb 2023.
You'll need to create the unread search folder - but if an all-mailbox search didn't find them, a search folder won't (unless search is still indexing).

do you have any rules moving or deleting the messages?

Is this the only pst in the profile? Go to File > Account Settings > Account Settings > email tab. Is the account added as POP? Select it - what is the folder path at the bottom of the dialog?

I created the unread search folder. It has lots of messages, but none dated more recently than Feb 2023.

As far as I know, I have not created any rules for moving or deleting messages. (Didn’t know that could be done.)

In Windows Resource Monitor, 25 minutes ago SearchIndexer.exe was consuming 2% of CPU (on a 13th gen i7). Now it's bouncing between 0 and 7%.

Yes, this is the only pst in the profile. Account Settings > email tab shows “POP/SMPT”.
Folder path: C:\My Documents\Outlook (Unicode).pst
(I’ve used this same folder path for quite a few years on past laptops. Never had a problem porting the pst file from an old PC to a new one before.)
Finally got to the bottom of the issue, after Outlook kept receiving messages for 19 hours and the pst ballooned from 8 GB to 22 GB. Turns out that it was downloading every message I had received for 12 years, ever since I started using gmail. The majority of these messages had long since been either deleted in Outlook or moved to Outlook subfolders, but were still on the gmail server. When I reported here that messages seemed to be coming in but were not in the Inbox, I was assuming that messages coming in would be recent ones, and I didn’t see the newly downloaded 12 year old messages. When Diane suggested I use Search to find the missing messages, I searched on subject names of recently received messages (as seen when logging into web-based Gmail), but at that time the search turned up nothing because Outlook was still in progress of bringing in the oldest (2011) messages first.

I was able to reconstruct a good up to date pst through a convoluted process which preserved my Outlook folder structure and message deletions done over the years. And new emails are now coming into Outlook fine. So case closed, the world is back to normal.

A question remains as to why Outlook was bringing 12 years of messages into my existing pst which had messages up to Feb. 2023, rather than bringing in just new messages since Feb. 2023. I never had that problem when moving my pst to a new computer in the past. But since it’s up and working now, I’m not going to try to solve that question.
Are you using the All Mail folder? It's not recommended ot use it in Outlook as it will double the message count - its disabled by default but there are ways to enable it.

What are you settings here - Gmail - you probably want to trash, not archive, deleted mail. (I don't know who auto-expunge setting is best.) The 10000 limit can be helpful too, depending on how many messages you receive and keep.
No, I don’t have an All Mail folder.
My Gmail settings:
  • POP is enabled for all mail
  • When messages are accessed with POP — keep Gmail’s copy in the Inbox
  • IMAP is enabled
  • Auto-Expunge on
  • When a message is marked as deleted . . . — Archive the message (default)
  • Folder size limits – Do not limit the number of messages in an IMAP folder (default)
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