Best 3 Methods to Repair Corrupt OST Files in Outlook

The most common query asked by many Outlook users is “How do I repair a damaged OST file?” If you are facing the same issues, then you are on the right page. In this blog, we will share the best 3 reliable solutions to repair an OST file.

OST files or Offline Storage Table create a copy of the entire MS Outlook data and save the entire mailbox in an offline mode. However, Sometimes, due to some reasons, users may experience a situation when the OST file gets corrupted. To help resolve this issue,  in this blog, we will share both the manual and automated solutions to repair Outlook data file. Before we jump on the solutions, let’s look at some of the common reasons for Outlook data file corruption.

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Reasons for Exchange OST File Corruption

Here are some of the most common reasons for Outlook data file corruption.

  • Virus or Malware attacks.
  • Network Issues.
  • Power Failure.
  • Bad sectors on hard drives.
  • Data Storage device failure.
  • Oversized OST file.
  • Header File corruption.

It becomes difficult for the users to access the mailbox data in a corrupt ost file. The user will be prompted with different error messages depending upon the different causes. The most common errors users receive are – 

  • Cannot start Windows Outlook. Outlook cannot find the OST file.
  • Cannot open the specific Outlook items when Offline.
  • Cannot access the default email folders, the file xx.ost is an offline folder file.

Let’s directly move on to the solution, and look at the various method to repair .ost file. Let’s start with the manual approach.

Manual Solution to Repair OST File

Users can follow the below-mentioned manual techniques to repair an OST file in Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010, etc. Follow the below-mentioned methods carefully.

Method 1: Recreate the OST File

  1. Go to the Control panel and click on the Mail option there.
  2. Select the Profile Name and click on properties.
  3. Now, click on Email accounts and select the Account settings.
  4. After that, click on data files and select the location to save the data.
  5. Choose the Open file location in the Outlook data files window to open the desired file location.
  6. Now, Close the Account settings box. 
  7. Delete the particular corrupted OST file. Then open the Outlook account again and you will see the newly created OST file. 

Method 2: Use Outlook Inbox Repair Tool (ScanOST.exe)

Outlook facilitates the inbuilt inbox repair tool to resolve minor corruption issues with the OST file. The usage of the inbox repair ScanOST.exe tool is completely free. Follow the steps provided to repair Outlook data file in 2010, 2013, 2016, etc. 

  1. Double-click on ScanPST.exe/ ScanOST.exe.
  2. Now, select the corrupted/ damaged OST file you need to repair. 
  3. Once the issue is found, click on Repair to start the process of scanning.
  4. Wait for the scanning process to complete.
  5. Once the scanning is done, the user can find the recovered OST file under the Recovered folder list.

Using the above-shared manual approaches, users can repair an OST file. However, these methods come with certain drawbacks. Let’s look at these drawbacks in the following section.

Drawbacks of the Manual Approach

  • The manual approach can fix only minor corruption issues. 
  • Users need good technical knowledge to perform this approach.
  • There is a high risk of data loss.
  • The manual method to repair OST file is a time-consuming process.
  • Using this method, users cannot repair the encrypted OST files. 

Also Read – How to Resolve “MS Outlook Keeps asking to Repair OST File “

To eliminate these drawbacks, many experts suggest using an automated solution.

Expert Solution to Repair an OST File

A OST Recovery Tool is one of the best solution to repair Outlook OST files. The multipple recovery modes of this software helps to fix any damaged OST files and fix minor corruptions. This software allows you to save the recovered OST file data into various file formats like EML, MSG, MBOX, PST, etc. Using the Mail Filter feature of this software, users can opt to save selective emails of a specific date range. This tool helps to repair OST file with 100% accuracy.


In this blog, we have discussed different techniques to repair an OST file. The manual approaches to recover data from a damaged OST file comes with certain drawbacks. Therefore, gooing with the automated solution is the best choice. The automated solution is a safe and relliable approach that provides results with high data accuracy.

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