Reduce the size of Outlook Data Files (.pst and .ost)

Your Microsoft Outlook mailbox grows as you create and receive items. When you delete items, the size of the Outlook Data File (.pst and .ost) file might not decrease in proportion to the data that you deleted. There are several ways to manage your mailbox and reduce the size of the data file.

Manage your mailbox
The Mailbox Cleanup tool is used to view the size of your mailbox and individual folders. You can also archive older items to an archive Outlook Data File (.pst) and empty your Deleted Items folder.

  1. Click the File tab.
  2. Click Cleanup Tools.
  3. Click Mailbox Cleanup.
  4. Do any of the following:
    • To view the total size of your mailbox and any individual folders it contains, click View Mailbox Size.
    • To locate older items, select Find items older than n days, enter a number between 1 and 999, and then click Find.
    • To locate large items, select Find items larger than n kilobytes, enter a number between 1 and 9999, and then click Find.
    • To move older items in your mailbox to an archive Outlook Data File (.pst), click AutoArchive.

Outlook Data Files (.pst) are saved on your computer in the Documents\Outlook Files folder. If you are using Windows XP, .pst files are saved in the My Documents\Outlook Files folder.

  • To view the size of your Deleted Items folder, click View Deleted Items Size.
  • To empty your Deleted Items folder, click Empty.
  • To view the size of your Conflicts folder, click View Conflicts Size.
  • To delete the contents of your Conflicts folder, click Delete.

Reduce the size of an Outlook Data File (.pst)
If you delete items from an Outlook Data File (.pst), the file is automatically compacted in the background when you’re not using your computer and Outlook is running. You can also manually start the compact command immediately. It might take several minutes to compact an Outlook Data File (.pst).

  1. Delete any items that you do not want to keep.
  2. Open the Folder List view. At the bottom of the Navigation Pane, click the Folder List icon or press CTRL+6.
  3. In the Navigation Pane, right-click the Deleted Items folder, and then click Empty Folder.
  4. Click the File tab.
  5. Click Account Settings, and then click Account Settings.
  6. On the Data Files tab, click the data file that you want to compact, and then click Settings.
  7. Click Compact Now.

NOTE You do not have to exit Outlook after you compact an Outlook Data File (.pst) file.

Reduce the size of an offline Outlook Data File (.ost)

An offline Outlook Data File (.ost) is exclusive to Microsoft Exchange Server accounts. Reducing the size of an offline Outlook Data File (.ost) might improve performance if you have deleted many items. This procedure does not delete any items saved on the computer running Microsoft Exchange Server.

  1. Delete any items that you do not want to keep.
  2. Open the Folder List view. At the bottom of the Navigation Pane, click the Folder List icon or press CTRL+6.
  3. In the Navigation Pane, right-click the Deleted Items folder, and then click Empty Folder.
  4. Click the File tab.
  5. Click Account Settings, and then click Account Settings.
  6. On the Data Files tab, click the data file that you want to compact, and then click Settings.
  7. Click Compact Now.

NOTES

To delete an item from both the online and offline folders, select the item, and then press DELETE.
If you are using an Exchange account in Cached Exchange Mode, only the selected folder will be cleared from the offline Outlook Data File (.ost). The items on the server will be downloaded again to the .ost file on the next synchronisation, if the folder is selected under Folder Options in Send/Receive Settings for the Exchange Server e-mail account.
When you use Cached Exchange Mode, public folders favourites are not synchronised by default. If you choose to synchronise public folders, the size of your offline Outlook Data File (.ost) might increase significantly.

Have more questions? Submit a request

2 Comments

  • 0
    Avatar
    Jhon

    Hii...

    To manage Outlook PST files , I would like to suggest one simple tool "** SysTools Split PST** " . The software manage Outlook PST by splitting large and heavy PST files into smaller parts. You won't loss any data at the time of splitting. The software provides you four different ways to divide .pst files i.e you can split PST files by Date, Year,Folder, Size. Try free demo version before purchase to check reliability and stability of the too. 

    Read more :-

    |
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/177995255/Split-PST-Reduce-Outlook-PST-file-Size
    |

    NOTE : This software won't works with OST files. 

  • 0
    Avatar
    lewiswilson

    Don’t go for the manual compress as it will not provide you with safe results all the time. You can go for Compress PST Software for reliable and accurate compress along with multiple benefits that will help you to customize your compress as per your demands. I personally worked on this tool and suggested it to various users because of its flawless speed. More details:  https://www.softakensoftware.com/compact-pst.html

     

Please sign in to leave a comment.
Powered by Zendesk