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Contacts show up as reminders in Outlook 2007

Posted on 2009-04-06
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Last Modified: 2012-05-06
My Outlook Reminders function has started behaving most oddly, following a corruption of my .pst file, which has been mostly recovered using scanpst.exe. The Reminders window now includes many of my Contacts. I cannot "dismiss" the reminders (they simply re-appear). Also furture events do not sound the the alarm when they fall due ( even allowing for advance warning). Can any body help me sort this ?
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Question by:socross
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by:David Lee
David Lee earned 500 total points
ID: 24076925
Hi, socross.

Launch Outlook from the command line with the /cleanreminders switch.  Something like

"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\Outlook.exe" /cleanreminders
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by:socross
ID: 24077124
Doesn't make any difference I'm afraid. I'm trying to decide whether a complete re-installation of Office 2007 will do the trick, or is the problem within the pst file,  in which case re-installation won't solve anything.  Any thiughts or suggestions anyone.
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David Lee earned 500 total points
ID: 24077259
If I remember correctly reminders are in a hidden folder in the PST file.  Creating a new PST file should do the trick.
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by:socross
ID: 24087841
I tried that, but it makes no difference either, sorry. Her's what I did: Created a new pst file, within Outlook; made it the default pst file; removed the original pst file from Outlook's list; imported the old pst contents into the new pst file. The reminder problem is still there, although different reminders come up.
Is there anyway to access the "hiddden reminders folder" in the original pst file and delete all the rogue reminders ?
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by:David Lee
David Lee earned 500 total points
ID: 24087983
Attempting to access the hidden folders is the action of last resort in my opinion.  I wonder if importing the items imported the underlying reminders?  How about this.

1.  Export the items from the existing, damaged, PST file to either CSV or Excel.
2.  Create a new PST file and make it the default.  
3.  Import the items from the CSV/Excel file created in step #1.
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by:socross
ID: 24091610
Will get back to this on Thursday (UK time). Thanks for suggestions so far.
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by:socross
ID: 24150504
Finally got back to this and what a nightmare!

BlueDevilFan's suggeation was certainly a step in the right direction, so many thanks for that and points awarded accordingly.
I found I could not export to CSV or Excel in some cases, because that lost certain informaton such as Contacts Distribution lists.
However I was able to export Contacts as a pst and that seemd to clear part of the problem when inported into the new pst file.
I also exported and imported Calendar as a pst and that also cleared some of the rogue reminders, and re-introduced legitimate reminders !
But the bulk of the problem was in mail folders. Furthermore, exporting the mail files (Inbox, Sent Items and my own mail folders etc etc) resulted in many e-mails being lost when re-imported into the new pst file.
In the end I had both the old and the new pst files open (using Outlook's Data File Management and making the new pst file the default) and I copied files manually, as best I could.
That still left me with many rogue reminders associated with old e-mails and here's how I solved it:
1) For each reminder associated as an e-mail, I opened the reminder, added a new reminder for some future date. That removed them temporarily from the reminder window, presumably until that future date,
2) When all reminders had been processed in this way (all for the same future date), I went to that date in Outlook Calendar.
3) As expected there were all the rogue reminders, but this time I was able to delete them individually and hey presto, problem solved.

I clearly have had some major corruption of my pst file, but it looks like it's sorted.

Thanks for assistance, guys.
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Author Closing Comment

by:socross
ID: 31566984
See my submitted comment
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Expert Comment

by:David Lee
ID: 24152919
You're welcome.  Glad I was able to contribute.
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