How to Recover From a Corrupted PST File

How to Recover from a Corrupted PST File

Outlook PST files are the most important data items for any user. They contain all your email, contacts, calendar information, and more. Unfortunately, this data can become corrupted due to various reasons such as virus infection, software malfunctioning, etc. Let’s take a look at how to recover from a corrupted PST File:

Steps on How to Recover From a Corrupted PST File

Step 1: Try ScanPST Utility

The first step in recovering from a corrupted PST file is to try scanning the file with Microsoft’s inbuilt utility ‘ScanPST’. This utility can be found in the Outlook program folder (C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office). If the scan is successful, this utility may be able to fix and restore your corrupt PST file.

Step 2: Create a Backup Copy of Your Corrupted PST File

Before proceeding with any further steps, it is important to create a backup copy of the corrupted PST file. Doing so will ensure that if something goes wrong while attempting to recover your data, you will still have access to the original version of your PST file.

Step 3: Run Inbox Repair Tool

If ScanPST fails to repair your corrupted PST files, it is important to run the Inbox Repair Tool. This tool can be found in the same folder as ScanPST and helps to repair any errors related to the PST file structure.

Step 4: Use a Third-Party Recovery Tool

If both ScanPST and Inbox Repair fail, it may be necessary to use a third-party recovery tool like DataNumen Outlook PST Repair. This software specializes in repairing severely corrupted PST files of all versions of Microsoft Outlook. It can also restore deleted emails, contacts, calendar entries, notes, etc from your corrupted PST file.

Step 5: Check for File Fragmentation Issues

Sometimes, fragmentation of the hard drive can lead to the corruption of an Outlook data file. To check for this, you will need to use a disk defragmenter and check the original PST file. If it is fragmented, the software can fix the issue in most cases.

Step 6: Make Changes to the Outlook Profile Settings

If steps 1-5 don’t work, then it may be necessary to make some changes to your Outlook profile settings. You can do this by going into Control Panel -> Mail -> Data Files and making changes as needed.

Step 7: Utilize Advanced Troubleshooting Techniques

Advanced troubleshooting techniques such as resetting Windows components or even reinstalling Office might help in restoring a corrupted PST file. In such cases, it is best to seek professional help from an IT specialist.

Step 8: Check for Physical Damage to the Hard Drive

Sometimes, physical damage to the hard drive can also cause the corruption of PST files. If this is the case then you will need to get it checked out by a professional or replace the hard drive entirely with a new one.

Step 9: Restore from Backup

If all else fails, you may have to resort to restoring your Outlook data from the backup. Depending on how often you back up your data, this could be a time-consuming process and it is best avoided when possible.

Step 10: Contact Microsoft Support

Finally, if all the above steps fail then it may be necessary to contact Microsoft support for assistance in recovering your corrupted PST file. Microsoft has a dedicated support team that can help you in such cases.


Recovering from a corrupted PST file isn’t always easy, but with the right steps and tools, it can be done. Following the above 10 steps should help you in restoring your data from a corrupt PST file. However, if all else fails then contacting Microsoft Support is highly recommended as they will have more advanced troubleshooting techniques that may be able to get your data back.

Outlook PST files are very important for any user and it is essential to take steps to ensure their safety. In case of corruption, however, the above steps should help you recover from a corrupted PST file and get back your data as soon as possible. With these steps in mind, you can be sure that your Outlook data will remain safe even if something goes wrong.

By Rana J.

I am Rana Junaid, a technology specialist with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the field. I am a guide for businesses and individuals looking to improve their online presence. I regularly share my expertise through this blog, social media, and speaking engagements.

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