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How-Do I:   change my Outlook .pst file from .PST format to Unicode format?

pugdog_fan
pugdog_fan asked
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
I was told that the MAX. file size an Outlook .PST can be is about (1.9xGB) in .PST file format.
I was told that if the .pst file was in Unicode format, then there is NO FILE size limit (or it was something like 5 GB).

Can you please answer the following questions:

1.  What do I have to do to 'convert' an existing .pst file (1.6 or so GB) from .pst format to unicode format?
2.  Would the 'new' unicode format file still be called a .pst?  Would it still have the .pst file extension?
3.  What is the trade-off when going from .pst to unicode?
4.  If your unicode file can be 5 GB, and your .pst files can be 2GB ... why doesn't everyone switch to unicode for more room?
5.  What is the step-by-step process I go through to start using unicode format for my .pst files instead of the MS .pst file format?
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Top Expert 2008

Commented:
Greetings, pugdog_fan !

To add to what asycokid said, you asked, "3.  What is the trade-off when going from .pst to unicode?"

You only use unicode PST only in Outlook 2003.  You cannot read unicode PST in Outlook 2002 and earlier versions.

If you do not want to purchase Outlook 2003, then you have make due with Outlook old PST format, ansii.  Ansii formatted PST file will hold 1.97 GB email.  You can archive the emails in the old PST file.
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;290847

You can divide up the PST file to smaller PST file, say one for each year.
http://pubs.logicalexpressions.com/Pub0009/LPMArticle.asp?ID=52

Large PST file can easily get corrupted.  So creating and managing smaller PST files is recommended.

Best wishes!

Author

Commented:
Cool .... got it ...

Here is the LAST issue then (and I will close out this question) ...

If I have a .PST on a system, is there anyway to 'tell' if it in ANSII or UNICODE file format?

We have a system here that we 'think' we created the .pst in UNICODE, but we are not sure ...
We didn't want to be back in the same boat again (when the file gets to 2 GB ... only to learn we thought it was unicode ... but it was still ansii format).

I read the URL link you provided, and that was GREAT!  The only thing it didn't really talk about is how to determine the existing .PST file type.

Thanks!

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Commented:
pugdog_fan,

We have not heard from you in awhile. Did any comment help you solve your problem? Do you have any more question? If an Expert helped you, please accept his/her answer above with an excellent or good grade.

Thanks, war1
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