OST file (Offline Storage Table) is a local copy of the actual OST file. If Outlook automatically copies this offline storage table, then there is no need to worry about anything.
But sometimes, due to various reasons like abrupt system shutdown, virus intrusion, or other possible issues, it might occur that Outlook is using an old copy of your Outlook data file, which is a serious issue. In such a case, there is no need to panic or worry about blocking emails on Outlook. Most probably, it might happen due to OST file corruption which most likely might be the reason for syncing appearance.
How to Verify if your Outlook Data File is Corrupted or not?
Verifying if your Outlook data file is corrupted may sound daunting but that isn’t really the case. To verify that whether your Outlook data file is corrupted or not, please follow the steps mentioned below:
- Firstly, close all the running programs on your computer and shut down your PC correctly (i.e., disconnect all the internet connections)
- Once your PC boots up again, launch MS Outlook and sign in using the same account which was giving you trouble earlier while accessing emails from Outlook
If you’re able to login successfully without any error messages, then you can consider your Outlook data file is working fine.
Otherwise, if you again face the same issue of the “Outlook Is Using an Old Copy of Your Outlook Data file” error message, then please continue with the next step mentioned below:
How to Fix “Outlook Is Using an Old Copy of Your Outlook Data file” by checking .OST file?
There are multiple options for fixing this error message as. For this guide, we’ll focus on two approaches which include;
- Deleting the existing OST file and re-create a new one by importing emails from Outlook Express and
- Repairing Corrupt OST file
Each of these options is explained in detail in this article. Please choose any one option depending upon your level of comfort with technical stuff:
Delete the existing OST file and re-create a new one by importing emails from Outlook Express
Deleting an existing OST file and re-creating a brand new one by importing emails from Outlook Express (OST) might fix the issue of the “Outlook Is Using an Old Copy of Your Outlook Data file” error message.
Before starting the whole process, please make sure that you’re able to login into your account, i.e., “Microsoft Exchange Server authentication account.” If you’re not able to log in successfully, this method will not work for you because it requires Outlook to run.
The steps involved in deleting existing OST file and recreating one are as below:
First, locate the OST on your device. Do note that this location isn’t consistent and may vary depending on your Windows Operating System (OS) version.
- If you’re using Windows XP, you can find it on C:\Documents and Settings\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook.
- If you’re using Windows 7 and Vista, locate the .OST file here; C:\Users\ProfileName\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook.
- Windows 8 & 8.1 users can find the .OST file on this location; C:\Users\ ProfileName \AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook.
- Finally, if you are using Windows 10, locate the .OST file under; C:\Users \ProfileName \AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook
Steps for Deleting the OST File
- Step 1: Close the Outlook program. Once it’s shut down, get to the .OST file location depends on your OS.
- Step 2: Find the.OST file with issues, copy it and save on a different but safe drive. Alternatively, you can also store it on an external drive.
- Step 3: Delete the .OST file and proceed to start Outlook.
The steps outlined above will help you recreate another .OST file that comes with a synchronized version of all your mailbox items stored on the Exchange server. Be sure to check each mail item keenly. If you discover that any email item is missing, try the other method explained below to attempt to repair the problem highlighting .OST file and restore the mail items you may have lost.
Repairing OST File
Microsoft Outlook has a built-in data file repair program known as the SCANPST.EXE. With this tool, you can detect and fix any problems with an OST file that could be triggering the error; “Outlook is using an Old Copy of your Outlook Data file” (OST).
To repair the OST file using the SCANPST.EXE tool, you will need to use the steps outlined below.
- Step 1: Close Outlook
- Step 2: Navigate to the .OST file location. Again, the location of the.OST files will vary depending on the Windows and Outlook versions you’re using. Real quick, here is a list of the different locations you can find .OST file.
- Outlook 2016/2019: For 32-bit Outlook, find the.OST file under; C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16\ and for 64-bit Outlook, find the.OST file under; C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16\.
- Outlook 2013: For 32-bit Outlook, find the.OST file under; C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\. If you’re using 64-bit Outlook, find it under; C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office15\
- Outlook 2010: If you’re using 32-bit Outlook, you will find the .OST file under; C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\. On the contrary, if you’re using 64-bit Outlook, look for it under; C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\
- Outlook 2007: For those using 32-bit Windows, check for this file under; C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12\. Again if you’re using 64-bit Windows, be sure to check for the .OST file with issues under C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\
When you’re in this location, run your SCANPST.EXE tool. After that, select the browser to find the .OST files with issues and then click on ‘Start.’
Your SCANPST.EXE tool will do the scan, and if a corrupted file is found, you will see the “errors were found” notification on your screen. Proceed to click the checkbox marked ‘Make a backup of scanned file before repairing’.
After that, click repair. When the repair process is completed, copy your .OST file back to the original location and launch Outlook. If Outlook opens without any issues this time, backup the lost email items. Alternatively, you can also export them to a .PST file and use Method 1 to recreate the .OST file.
That pretty much sums up how to solve the “Outlook Is Using an Old Copy of Your Outlook Data file”. Remember to always back up the older version of the .OST file just in case.
Samuel Matthews is a content creator with a good reputation in investigative Journalism and at A-writer.com as an essay writer. He likes to meet different people, learn new things, drum, and travel the world.