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Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

FIXED
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Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

I want to make an archive of some Outlook messages that are stored in a .OST file (collected by IMAP).  When I run the archive routine on Outlook I get quite a large file with no obvious useful content.  If I create a .PST file and try to copy the contents I get a copy of the sent messages but the Inbox contents are not copied.

Am I doing something wrong or trying to do the impossible?  Do I need to use OST to PST conversion software?  

 

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Community Veteran
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Registered: 14-07-2009

Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

I debated with myself whether to post this query to Email or Tech Help.  Perhaps a kindly moderator could move this over to Tech Help as it doesn't seem to be getting a response here - and it is essentially a software problem.

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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

@ReedRichards - If I read this correctly then I don't think this is what you need, but I could well be wrong of course, and just typing for the sake of it.

Community Veteran
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

What I think Microsoft is saying is that emails in a .OST file don't really belong to you, you're just allowed a look-see at files that are stored on somebody's server.  It's the job of the owner of the server to look after back-ups directly from the server; you're not allowed to make your own backup copies.  If this is true then I suppose that is fair enough but I cannot find this stated explicitly so I don't know if it is true or just a misinterpretation on my part.  

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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

according to this you can't do it unless you use a conversion tool to change them to pst https://www.msoutlook.info/question/802 which you could do by copying the ost file to somewhere else and do it while leaving the original ost file alone

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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

I read the article as; if your email is provided by an Exchange Server you’ll have one of these files containing an archive of your email, appointments etc, and with it you’ll be able to view, read an search its content while being offline.

However, in order to make use of this file you must have the support of an Exchange Server to first create it and populate it.

Community Veteran
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

@Oldjim, thank you for that helpful reference.

@Mook, the trouble is that if you have a recent copy of Outlook (2013, 2016) then even regular IMAP ends up in an OST file with all the restrictions that imposes on what you can (or can't) do with your messages.  Specifically it seems you cannot keep a local copy without resorting to third-party software.  

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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

@ReedRichards - OK that seems fair enough, and typically MS, but at least you are wiser now than you were this morning. Smiley

Browni
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

Fix
Have you tried dragging the messages from the .ost file to a .pst file?
I must have been really bad in a previous life. This is my 3rd ISP in a row that uses lithium.
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

I tried drag and drop to a PST file on one message and it vanished.  Since the whole point is NOT to lose these messages I gave up at that point. Perhaps I should have tried a bit harder?  

Browni
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

Are you copying to the same type of folder, eg, inbox to inbox?

My current inbox which is connected to an IMAP account only contains this months emails, the rest have been moved to an inbox folder in a .pst file which now contains all email from 2006 thru 2016.
I must have been really bad in a previous life. This is my 3rd ISP in a row that uses lithium.
Community Veteran
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

@Browni are you using Outlook 2013 or 2016?  Is the file to which the mail downloads .OST?

Browni
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

Office 2016 with the mail being delivered to a .ost. The .pst I copy the emails to is only opened when I move emails to it.
I must have been really bad in a previous life. This is my 3rd ISP in a row that uses lithium.
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

Thank you @Browni, I'll try again.  if it works I'll award you the fix.  

Browni
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Re: Problem Archiving Messages from Outlook .OST file

I really hope it works for you as it is such a simple solution.

You actually got me worried a little bit saying that messages were disappearing but I can't recreate that when copying messages from .ost to .pst and vice versa.

I found this in an email from 2004 lol

 

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I must have been really bad in a previous life. This is my 3rd ISP in a row that uses lithium.