If you have ever worked in Outlook's Offline Mode then you might be aware of the fact that Outlook stores users data in the OST file during the offline mode. Yes, when you work in the Offline mode then the information is stored in the OST file, and when you work in the online mode (means connected to Exchange Server) then Outlook stores data in the PST file.
Now, there is a big difference in the OST file and PST file. Whenever you work in online mode then everything is stored in the PST file. And, according to the policy of your company or hosting provider, the emails that you have received in the online mode may be removed from the server after a certain period of time. It may happen that your PST file has 10000s of emails but on the server, you have only 500 emails. The reason is simple. Other emails have been automatically deleted from the server. It means, in case anything wrong will happen to the PST file stored on your PC, you will lose all your important data. So, it is crucial to ensure that PST is in the good state.
However, in case of OST, the functioning is different. OST is the exact replica of your mailbox on the Exchange Server. Whatever is on the Exchange Server in your mailbox, the same is available in the OST file too. In case, you will delete the OST file or if it gets corrupt, MS Outlook will automatically recreate it. But, if your Outlook profile gets damaged or your mailbox on the Exchange Server gets damaged then the OST file on your PC will become inaccessible putting you in data loss. You will not be able to open this OST file and access its emails, notes, etc unless you convert OST to PST. Yes, you are right. PST file is not limited to Exchange Server or Outlook profile; hence, it can be opened with any version of MS Outlook. We will see how to convert OST to PST later in this tutorial, but before that let us see some errors that you may encounter when OST or PST gets damaged and become inaccessible.
Errors of OST and PST files
The reasons behind the corruption of OST or PST file are many. And, when these files are damaged, you may see one of the below listed error messages:
These are a few top errors that may help you to determine that OST or PST has been damaged. In this case, you should go ahead with the repair process or OST to PST Conversion process.
Fixing OST or PST errors using Inbox Repair Tools
Microsoft provides a tool named Inbox Repair tools to help you fix PST file (scanpst.exe) or OST file (scanost.exe). These are free tools and can repair files up to 2GB. Perform the below steps to use these tools depending upon the corruption.
In case of the above solution has been failed to provide you a good solution, you are suggested to take help of OST to PST converter in case the OST file has been damaged. However, if the problem is with the PST file, you should use the PST repair software.
These are professionally developed software that has the capability to even repair / convert the files that are above 2GB. Even if the file is severely damaged, you will see good results.