Friday, October 16, 2009

WINXP - Microsoft Office Outlook

As I've said before, I do not normally deal with non-utility applications in this Blog, but here's another exception.

Users of Microsoft Office Outlook, especially for business, have a concern in keeping emails when they are addressing official business. Even home users may have an interest in keeping emails from family, banks, doctors, etc.

The first step is consideration of using a good sub-folder system.

(click image for larger view)

The above example shows several added features as well as the defaults used when creating a new email account.

  • Under Personal Folders (Outlook.pst file) the folder FEDEX was added

  • A Rule was created to check all incoming email, if it is From, route to FEDEX folder

The Archive folder (Archive.pst file) is normally created by default, note the qualifier "normally."

You do have a Default Archive Settings under Tools menu, Options, Other tab, [AutoArchive] where you set the generic (aka default) rule.

The Default Archive Settings can be changed/overridden by right-clicking a folder, selecting Properties, AutoArchive tab (example; set Inbox to Do not archive items in this folder).

You should use Custom Archive Settings for most folders, and have the emails archived/moved to a matching folder inside the Archive folder. Or to permanently delete contents after n-days (example; delete contents of the Sent Items folder every 10days).

Remember to ensure that ALL folders under the Archive folder are never archived.

Note the special archive folder Proj (Proj.pst file), this was created to save emails that apply to a project I work on. These emails are official business documents and must be kept for tracking purposes. I manually move project emails after reading them (using "Move to folder" icon on Outlook Toolbar).

If you are running a business, a suggestion (using Property Management as an example):
Property Management deals with Clients (their property) and likely Vendors (landscapers, painters, repair, etc.) .

In this case, consider having sub-folders under Inbox

  • Clients

    • And sub-folder (Inbox\Clients\client-name) for each client by name and/or property

  • Vendors

    • And sub-folder (Inbox\Vendors\vendor-name) for each vendor

Then create Rules to, check all incoming email, if it is From client or vendor email-address, route to the applicable Inbox sub-folder.

This way you can easily see which client or vendor you receive email from. In the above example, FEDEX is a vendor.


If your email is important, you should be backing-up your mailboxes, which are .pst files. Fortunately Microsoft has provided a (PSTBackup) add-in you can download and install, see the download-link in Using the Microsoft Outlook Personal Folders Backup tool.

CAUTION: You need to setup EACH .pst file you have via Backup [Options], see Using-article.

AFTER installing the Outlook PST Backup Tool (add-in) sometimes disappears from the File menu (listed as Backup).

Here's what to do:

  1. Open Add/Remove Programs and ensure that Microsoft Outlook Personal Folders Backup is listed

  2. IF NOT listed, close Outlook and download & install

  3. Open Outlook, select Tools menu, Options

  4. Other tab, [Advanced Options], [COM Add-Ins] to open dialog

  5. [Add], [Browse] to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\OFFICE11\ADDINS, select outbak.dll

  6. [OK] out of all dialogs, close Outlook & reopen

  7. In File menu, Backup should be listed


Mike said...

I want a tool which can convert ost to pst, i have a tool for pst repair
Repair outlook pst file tools
to repair pst file. I have deleted my email, but still i recover all my emails, now i have problem with ost, please tell a tool to convert ost to pst.

Tecknomage said...

Google is your friend, seach convert ost to pst and you'll get many hits.