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unicode pst

Posted on 2006-11-20
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Last Modified: 2008-02-01
We have been running office XP and just rolled out the update for Outlook 2003.  Some folks have experienced PST file size issues even in Outlook 2003.  Does Outlook 2003 always force the use of the new unicode PST format?  How does this work and does unicode really solve the problem of the PST becomming too large?
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Question by:tedpenner
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Expert Comment

by:KVR_Solutions
ID: 17979461
By default, Outlook will create a Unicode personal store when possible. The exception is when creating PSTs for use with IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) or Hotmail/MSN accounts, as those accounts require ANSI.

Administrators may want to prevent users from adding these accounts types to Outlook by forcing the use of Unicode PSTs only. Other administrators may want to force Outlook 2003 to only create ANSI PSTs to insure backwards compatibility with older versions still in use on the network.

Either is accomplished by setting a registry value for NewPSTFormat. As always, use extreme care when modifying the registry and if you're not sure what you're doing, don't do it!

To force Unicode or ANSI PSTs, navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office⏻.0\Outlook.

Add the NewPSTFormat value with one of the following values:


Prefer Unicode PST: 0 (default)
Prefer ANSI PST: 1
Enforce Unicode PST: 2
Enforce ANSI PST: 3
By using a value of 2 or 3, you can restrict all new .PST files to either the old format or the new format

ANSI refers to the older type that's limited to 2GB.  When you use Unicode, you'll be able to have a PST file larger than 2GB.

Ira @ KVR
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Expert Comment

by:KVR_Solutions
ID: 17979474
Sorry, that reg key is: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook


Ira @ KVR
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LVL 97

Expert Comment

by:war1
ID: 17979776
Greetings, tedpenner !

>> Does Outlook 2003 always force the use of the new unicode PST format?

No, when you create a new PST file in Outlook 2003, you are given a choice to use 2003 format (unicode) or 97-2002 format (ansi).  Also, if you copy PST file from another version of Outlook, Outlook will use that older version PST format.

Best wishes!
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Author Comment

by:tedpenner
ID: 17980581
How do I determine if a unicode PST is being used?  Is there a checker for the file itself that will tell me?
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Accepted Solution

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KVR_Solutions earned 2000 total points
ID: 17980615
To determine what the format of your Outlook 2003 .pst file is, follow these steps:1. On the Tools menu, click Options.
2. On the Mail Setup tab, click Data Files.
3. Click your .pst file, and then click Settings.
4. On the General tab, examine the following:• If the Format box lists Personal Folders File, your .pst file is in the new format that supports multilingual Unicode data.
• If the Format box lists Personal Folders file (97-2002), your .pst file is in the earlier format (ANSI) that is compatible with earlier versions of Microsoft Outlook.
 
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