Dilemma: to add to existing data file or not to?

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mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
Hi there. Running Outlook 2016/365 on Win7.

Search was erratic so I uninstalled and reinstalled Outlook yesterday. Search working now. Was about to add my four additional POP emails to Outlook but aborted when POP and IMAP Account Settings asked me if I'd like to deliver new messages to a New Outlook Data File or Existing Outlook Data File. When clicking on Existing Outlook Data File I was taken to my Outlook Files folder, which shows something like 20 PSTs. I could very well be wrong, but I feel like maybe it was all these PSTs that was confusing my Outlook and stymying Search. If that's the case, I sure don't want to create more PSTs and get me into the same problem.

So my questions are:

- Could it be the high number of PSTs on my machine that was confusing Search?
- How do I know which PST is my main PST? I'm assuming it would be the one named after my Office 365 email, but I also see a PST named Outlook Data File.
- What are the pros and cons of delivering messages from other accounts to an existing Outlook Data File?
- How can I tell which of these PSTs are safe to delete? Or should I just leave them alone?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
- Could it be the high number of PSTs on my machine that was confusing Search?
- How do I know which PST is my main PST? I'm assuming it would be the one named after my Office 365 email, but I also see a PST named Outlook Data File.
- What are the pros and cons of delivering messages from other accounts to an existing Outlook Data File?
- How can I tell which of these PSTs are safe to delete? Or should I just leave them alone?
No, they shouldn't be stymieing search - unless all 20 are open in Outlook. All of the 265 and 513KB psts files can be delete - they are empty.

The larger pst files haven't been used in a long time - if you are sure you don't need the contents (or have them in another pst), you could delete all pst files from 2014 and 2015.

Pros of reusing psts is you don't lose categories, views, rules and don't end up with a ton of pst files laying around. Con is there is a potential to end up with duplicate messages if you leave pop mail on the server. (I'm going to delete your image from your post since it has email addresses in it. )



pst-forums.jpg
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
I don't ever leave POP mail on any server. So how do I know which pst I should be adding my new mailboxes to?
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
Based on the modified dates in the screenshot, the top one is the one you are using in your current profile. (The mod date is the date the pst was last opened in outlook. )
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
That was my hunch too, except that the email referenced in that pst's filename is definitely not my Outlook 365 mailbox, aka the main one I use on this Outlook here. I just added my POP accounts to Outlook and pointed them to that PST you suggested and it created a whole other inbox instead of lumping all the emails in my main inbox like I was hoping.
 
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mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
I think I figured it out. There's a folder called Outlook Files, which is where those ones were located, then an OST in a different folder called Outlook which seems to be where my main account stores data. Would it be an OST instead of a PST? I just tried to select that file and got a window saying "The file you chose is not an Outlook data file. You must select a new file of this type."
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
An ost is only used by Outlook.com, Exchange or IMAP. You wouldn't normally deliver POP3 to the folder, although it is possible to do with Exchange/Outlook.com.

It's actually fairly easy to solve in the profile - Right click on the data file name in the navigation pane (should be named using your email address) and choose Open File Location. That will open Windows Explorer to the location of the data file - the data file will be selected.

open-file.png
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
I did what you said, and the data file selected is an OST, which when I try to choose it, I got a window saying "The file you chose is not an Outlook data file. You must select a new file of this type."
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
You can't open it in outlook - only the account that created it can open it.
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
Oh, so I can't actually have pop email from non-exchange boxes delivered to an ost data file then?
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
Then I should be able to select the OST. These are pop accounts I'm trying to add, not IMAPs. What am I doing wrong?
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
My mistake - I read non-exchange account and thought "Exchange ost" - if its an exchange account, you can deliver pop3 to a folder in it, but not IMAP ost files. Granny is a pop3 account - poremsky7 is imap and the ones grayed out are exchange. (the pop3 and imap accounts are test accounts so don't expect a reply if you send to them :) ).


select-folder.png
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
OK, well I'm a little confused now myself. So to recap: my main account is an Office365 exchange type account that operates on an OST data file. I have a few POP3 accounts I want to add to this Outlook profile. Can they be added to that OST?
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
if it is a paid exchange (business or enterprise), yes. If it is a migrated outlook.com account, yes... if its on the old server and uses Exchange Active Sync, it should be No (but i haven't double checked in a long time.)
 

mr_malkovich

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
it's an Outlook365 email I bought from Godaddy. Custom domain. And when I try to select the OST as a data file for the other emails I receive a window saying "The file you chose is not an Outlook data file. You must select a new file of this type." So I suppose it's not possible then? Just create new data file(s) for the POP3 emails?
 
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