Resolve OST File Errors

How to Resolve "Cannot open your default email folders....." Error in OST Files

Similar to a PST file of Outlook, OST file (Offline Storage Table) file, which is also an Outlook file can be damaged due to several reasons. OST file is created when you set MS Outlook to work in an Offline Mode. It may be damaged due to issues, such as database damage, virus infection, sudden power failure leading into abrupt system shutdown making Outlook helpless to restore the file, server crash, and more.

So, here the question is how to repair the corrupt OST file so that you do not get “cannot open your default email folders…” message again. Here we will tell you how to do this, but before that let us see why you get this error message:

  • As stated earlier, when OST file is corrupt, Outlook gets failed to restore it and call it when you start MS Outlook. In such a situation, you see the above mentioned error message.
  • Another reason is problem in the synchronization of Outlook with Exchange Server. When it happens, Outlook cannot connect with your mailbox on Exchange Server. This might be a temporary issue, and waiting for an hour or so can automatically fix the issue, as the server team might have been working on the backend to fix this issue. Restarting PC and Outlook may also fix this issue.
  • You may also see this message, if you have not set the correct email account to access the OST file
  • If your email account for the related OST file has been accidentally removed from Exchange Server, you will see this error message.
  • Your email account is not an Exchange Server email account but a POP3, IMAP, or HTTP email account, but while setting up the account, you have set the email account as Exchange-based account
  • Listed above are some of the reasons that may lead into "cannot open your default email folders..." message. Let us see how to fix this issue:

Fixing "cannot open your default email folders..." message

Perform the below steps to fix the issues:

Process One
  • If you know that your email account is correctly configured in Exchange server with the right mailbox, then check settings in MS Outlook to ensure they are correct as well.
  • Check that Outlook is able to synchronize with Exchange Server. To do this, start Outlook > Send/Receive. If you do not get any error, then it means the issue is temporary and will be automatically fixed by the server team.
  • Close Outlook, delete OST file, restart Outlook, and then go to Send/Receive. Outlook will create a new OST file and the issue will be resolved.
Process Two

In case, the email account associated with the Exchange Server mailbox does not exist or the mailbox has been deleted from Exchange server then you will have to delete this old profile and create a new email profile. Perform the below steps to create a new email profile:

  • Go to Start > Control Panel.
  • Find the Mail icon and double-click it. You will see the Mail setup dialog box.
  • Click Show Profiles option.
  • Select the corrupt profile and remove it.
  • Repeat steps 3-4 to remove if you have more corrupt profiles.
  • Once all profiles are removed, create a new profile.
  • Once the new profile is created, start MS Outlook and your problem should have been fixed.

In case, the above solutions do not work, and you are still not able to access OST file and its data then perform the below solutions.

Using Inbox repair tool to repair the corrupt OST file

Inbox repair tool is a free utility that comes intact in Windows OS. You can use it to fix PST file and OST file as well. Perform the below steps to use Inbox repair tool:

  • Find the OST file and creates it copy.
  • Go to Start > type Inbox Repair Tool.
  • Start the tool, and then select the corrupt OST file.
  • Start to repair it.
  • Depending upon the size of OST file, the process may take some time.
  • Once the process is finished, start Outlook and see if the issue has been resolved.

In case, you still see the "cannot open your default email folders..." message, then perform the below process to fix this issue.

Using an Advanced OST Repair tool to Fix errors in the OST file

If Inbox repair tool could not fix the issue, then you are left with only one solution to access the data of the OST file. And, this solution is repairing and converting OST to PST file. You can use an advanced OST repair tool to fix it. The tool will fix the issue, and then convert it to a PST file, which you can open with any email profile on any Outlook and on any computer. This way you will have access to the data that was in the corrupt OST file.