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How Can You Repair Outlook PST File That Is Corrupt or Damaged

by Naveen Agarwal
Outlook PST File

Problems with the Personal File Folders of Microsoft, also known as PST, are one of the most common issues. Microsoft developers are well aware of this issue, which is why the MS Outlook application comes with an inbuilt repair tool known as ScanPST that can help you fix the corrupted PST files.

Most of the time, you cannot solve the corrupted PST files by simply running them through the Inbox Repair Tools. You need to take extra actions so that you can save your data from being damaged permanently.

How Does ScanPST File Work?

The ScanPST file is buried deep within the installation folder of the MS Outlook on your PC. This means that you need to search for the file thoroughly. After you locate the ScanPST file, your next step is to fix the corrupt or damaged PST file using the Inbox Repair Tool. As per Computer Hope, ScanPST can attempt to repair MS Outlook problems.

Before you start the repair process, you need to know an essential thing. If you’re using the ScanPST tool for the first time, you should know that it provides its users to create a backup copy of the damaged PST files. Make sure you choose this option as you might need a copy to retrieve the missing data. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Exit the Microsoft Outlook application completely
  • Open File Explorer from your PC. Depending on the Windows version you’re using, you need to remember the following order.

Windows 32-bit: Local Disk (C:)> Program Files (x86)> Microsoft Office> Root> Office16

Windows 64-bit: Local Disk (C:)> Program Files> Microsoft Office> Root> Office16

The paths mentioned above apply to the MS Outlook versions of 2016, 2019, and Outlook 365. If your system runs an older version of MS Outlook, you should choose the Office14, Office12, or Office15 folder instead.

  • After that, find the file that is labeled as ScanPST and run the application as administrator.
  • Use the Browse option and choose the MS Outlook PST file that is corrupted and in need to repair.

However, if you’re using this process for the first time, you might not know the location of the PST file. In such situations, press Windows+S to open the Windows search. After that, search it by its name and include the extension such as .pst. You will get the location of the file within the results.

Alternatively, you can also open MS Outlook and go to Fie> Account Settings> Data Files to know the exact location of the PST files. Don’t forget to close the application after you’re done.

  • Choose Start. After that, the ScanPST file will search for PST files that are corrupted or damaged. The process might become time-consuming depending on the capability of your PC.
  • You will find a radio button next to the Make Backup of Scanned File before Repairing option. From there, choose the options Repair.
  • Choose OK and end the PST repair process.

After that, you can open MS Outlook and you can continue using the PST files without any problem. You will find the .bak extension file in the same location.

Third-Party PST Recovery Tools 

There are lots of paid third-party recovery tools online that claim to fix corrupted PST. If you want to use a third-party tool, make sure you take the necessary precautions. This is because many tools are not effective at fixing corrupted PST files. This is why you need to purchase the best tool to fix your corrupt PST

Make sure you use the third-party PST repair tools in such cases when the ScanPST files fail to complete their jobs. Additionally, consider reading the online reviews before you start using any third-party tools. This way you can ensure if they are reliable or not.

Recover Lost and Found Files 

From time to time, the ScanPST file of MS Outlook will start fixing a seriously damaged PST file. This is why sometimes the tool might fail to replace any repaired item in its original locations or folders. If that’s the case, you should transfer them into the Lost and Found folder under the Recovered Personal Folders Label.

If you’re planning to recover these items, make sure you create a new PST data file in the MS Outlook application or file folder and move all the contents from Lost and Found or Recovered Personal Folders into it. Here are the steps:

  • Open the Home option in MS Outlook. After that, open the options menu to the next New Email. Point to the option More Items and choose Outlook Data file.
  • Choose the option Outlook Data file and select the option OK.
  • Specific a proper location on your PC, enter the new name of the PST file and choose OK.
  • Select the icon More to the MS Outlook window that is in the lower-left corner. After that, choose the option Folders so that the Outlook sidebar can be switched to Folder List View.
  • Drag all the contents of the Lost and Found folder to the Recovered Personal Folders.

Once you do that, you can remove the Recovered Personal Folders or Lost and Found Folder from the MS Outlook.


Now that you know some great steps to fox the corrupted or damaged PST data files, you don’t need to worry about PST-related problems. If you have any other questions, make sure you comment below.

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