outlook loads slow

I am running an NT 4 network (server) w/ w2k workstations. We run outlook 97 (yeah, I know, I'm still in the stone age, but I dont pay the bills). I have outlook set to start at boot (placed shortcut in user>programs>startup). It seem to take quite a while to load sometimes, some machines more than others. Of course, I would suppose that the individual machine makes a difference in what it loads at boot and the hardware in the box. I am trying to figure a way to speed it up if possible.
thanks
capvacAsked:
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sirbountyConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Try compacting the PSTs...
Right-click your folder's top level (Outlook Today if it's your main data store), click Advanced, and click Compact Now.
ref:http://www.winnetmag.com/MicrosoftExchangeOutlook/Article/ArticleID/24017/MicrosoftExchangeOutlook_24017.html
http://www.slipstick.com/addins/housekeeping.htm
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=296088

You might also try ScanPST: http://www.slipstick.com/problems/scanpst.htm

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sunray_2003Commented:
do you see a difference in its opening speed when it is opening when the machine bootsup and when it is double clicked from desktop or start programs after machine is booted up..

Try this . donot make outlook open at startup.

let the machine fully bootup and then open outlook. Check if there is any difference.
Try that and post back
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capvacAuthor Commented:
sunray, yes it does load quicker from the desktop after boot. My boss wants Outlook to load at boot so that people will get mail as soon as they start work. If I depend on them to load it by themselves, they will forget.
re: sirbounty, I'm reading those articles you referenced. I will need to study a bit more to fully understand the processes they discuss. One thing of note; until recently, we were all on a workgroup w/ a F&P NT server however, I recently put us on a domain. (We use Microsoft Mail for our internal mail and Outlook 97 as the client for both internal and external mail). Since the users were previously logging on locally, I still have a bunch of local user profiles on most of the machines. I saw that  when I do a search for *.pst files I find several (or many) depending on how many users had profiles on the workstation.  If I understand what you are saying, I do the following; explore>program files>microsoft office then open the properties of the MS office folder ( I see nothing called "Outlook today", there is an advanced tab which gives me options concerning; indexing service, achiving, compressiong (not compacting) and encryption. Are you saying that I should compress that directory? I thought that compression was only for saving disk space (not an issue here) and would result in performance slowdown. I think you are referring to something else but I'm missing it.
thanks
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sunray_2003Commented:
I get it .. part of the reason why outlook might be slow is that it loads with all other applications that also start during startup.
What you can try is to stop all applications to load at startup except outlook

Download this http://netsquirrel.com/msconfig/#nt 
and run it . go to startup tab and disable all applications ..

Now check if outlook starts faster ..
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sirbountyCommented:
capvac - in reponse to your last post, "no" - don't compress these files.
The compact command is within Outlook.
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capvacAuthor Commented:
If I do a help search in Outlook, it says to open services, exchange, advanced....and compact. But we use MS mail, and there is no compact option listed.  There is no advanced tab in MS mail either.
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sirbountyCommented:
MS MAIL?!  Boy that is the stone ages...why did you post you're using Outlook then?  
Man, I've got to go into the attic to get my MS Mail tool belt... LOL :)
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capvacAuthor Commented:
We use outlook as the client, MS mail as the service. Can you recommend a better setup?
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capvacAuthor Commented:
Ok, I found the "compress folders" option, it was under Tools>Services>PERSONAL FOLDERS (not MS mail)>properties. I'll try this and let you know how it works.
thanks
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