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Frustration trying to setup MS Outlook on a new computer

Steve_Brady asked
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Note:  I'm currently running  Office 2007 on Windows 7 (64 bit)


For some reason, unlike other MS Office apps, I have always struggled with MS Outlook when reinstalling Office after reformatting a hard drive (HD) or moving to a new computer.  Does every Outlook user have that problem or is it just me?

Is there supposed to be more to it than just copying the .pst file from the previous HD at:


and then, after installing Office onto the new HD, pasting it into the corresponding directory/folder there?

I will answer my own quuestion and say, it must involve more than that because, for me at least, simply doing the above always presents problems.  For example:

• No accounts are present in Tools > Account Settings...
• I have to set up my email accounts from scratch and then go in and re-input all the settings.
• I can't even find an option for creating rules (in the Tools menu where I think that option usually is) let alone having my rules moved over from the previous HD.
• Multiple other settings have to be re-created (which is a pain since there are so many different places to go to set them and who remembers where to set one-time options like that?)
• Sometimes when I've tried to do it, I've ended up with a whole new set of folders (i.e. Deleted Items, Drafts, Inbox, Outbox, Sent Items, etc.) instead of just a single set into which go emails sent to either of my two email addresses.

Does anyone have or know of a simple, step-by-step description of how to do this correctly?  I've found a few sites (e.g. here) that say they've got just that but between mentioning files I can't find, addressing differences in various versions of Office, and other confusing points, I feel more lost after reading them than before.  It would sure be nice to be able to install office and just slide over my Outlook "data files" and be off and running (as is the case with Excel and Word,* etc.).  Instead, it always seems to take 2-3 hours of googling various questions, reading instructions at the Gmail and other sites and basically pulling my hair out (which these days is not very satisfying since there's not much left!)

Thanks for any and all thoughts and suggestions!

*I even learned just recently that it's a piece of cake to get my previous Quick Access Toolbar settings (for Excel:, Word and PowerPoint) rather than having to recreate them from scratch.  In case it helps someone else, the explanation is here.
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