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How to delete e-mail from PST file w/o opening Outlook

Posted on 2009-03-30
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Microsoft Outlook 2003 hangs on the latest e-mail in my Inbox. I have CTRL-ALT-DEL to end the program. It will not respond. I have since gone into mail via mail2web and deleted the e-mail from downloading. It had a huge attachment. Problem is that it already tried to download in Outlook and causes it to hang.

Is there a way to open PST file, look at the listed contents and delete the e-mail out so it is not the first thing Outlook tries to open? Thanks!

Jim
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Question by:interc3905
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15 Comments
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:defkamel
ID: 24021985
copy the .pst to an external hard drive or network drive and try to open the pst on another computer and delete any large attachments and then try to open it up on the original workstation. There is not way to open a pst without using outlook that I know of.
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LVL 5

Expert Comment

by:biscuit3
ID: 24022010
Unattach the current PST
Create a new PST - open up outlook
In outlook, open up the "hanging PST" and try to delete the email
close original PST
close outlook
Search your harddrive for Scanpst.exe  run this program against the original PST
Once it is completed, reattach the Original PST to outlook

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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:SStory
ID: 24022020
You could move it, create a new PST file and do an import...but I don't know that you wouldn't wind up in the same shape.  Also if the PST is corrupt, search your computer for "scanpst.exe"...or you should be able to just close Outlook and from Start-Run, type in scanpst.exe
let it scan the PST for errors. Maybe it will fix them and you can open the file in Outlook.
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Author Comment

by:interc3905
ID: 24022021
This a home office and I have no other computer. I found plenty of software that recovers PST data and will actually list the e-mails to recover. But I want to list the items and delete the e-mail I don't want.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:JohnGerhardt
ID: 24022024
If you:
  • Backup your PST
  • Delete the current mail profile (Control Panel => Mail)
  • Recerate a mail profile (Control Panel => Mail)
  • Mount the PST in outlook (File => Open => Outlook Data File)
  • Hopefully it opens, you can then drag and drop things into the new PST.
It should work..!
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:JohnGerhardt
ID: 24022029
Wow long way behind..>!
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:SStory
ID: 24022034
BTW, the file is generally in:
C:\Program Files\Common Files\System\MSMAPI\1033
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Author Comment

by:interc3905
ID: 24022041
Already did scanpst with no luck.
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:SStory
ID: 24022048
yes, we are all often typing at the same time and submit only to see that someone else beat us to it.
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Author Comment

by:interc3905
ID: 24022131
Ok - I did the following from below JohnGerhardt BUT I still need to access that INBOX from that PST since there is other important e-mails in that folder. When I go to it, because it is the first listed - it hangs again!

Backup your PST
Delete the current mail profile (Control Panel => Mail)
Recerate a mail profile (Control Panel => Mail)
Mount the PST in outlook (File => Open => Outlook Data File)
Hopefully it opens, you can then drag and drop things into the new PST.
It should work..!

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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:Dhiraj Mutha
ID: 24022267
What is the size of the PST?
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:Dhiraj Mutha
ID: 24022279
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Author Comment

by:interc3905
ID: 24022534
Size is irrelevant in this situation (208MB) and also I have tried the Stellar product. It will list the contents and allow you to recover, but I am looking for something that will delete the e-mail from the list.
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:Dhiraj Mutha
ID: 24022564
I dont think so there is any tool who will delete the mails from the PST.
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Accepted Solution

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interc3905 earned 0 total points
ID: 24022592
I am thinking about this wrong way. I will use the recovery method to recover the e-mails I do want and just leave the bad e-mail where it is. Create a new Oultook profile and import the good messages back in. Thanks for all the feedback. - Jim
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