Force PST Path Change In Outlook 2003,2007 and 2010

Posted on 2011-10-07
Last Modified: 2012-08-13
I am trying to change the PST path in Outlook 2003, 2007 and 2010 clients via Group Policy Management Console on windows Server 2008 dmoain controller.  I've installed the ADM for Outlook 2003, Outlook 2007 and 2010 and have entered the path in the policy and enabled the policy (only on Outlook 2007 & -2010 as Oulook 2003 is handled via registry hack).

---The old path is \\servername\shared_folder\username.pst  
---I want the new path to be a file cluster name:  \\filecluster\pst\username\%username%.pst  

I've made the policy change for both Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2010 (since their same policy object, it's easy to do).  I've forced the policy update on a test machine, but when I look in Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2007, they both show the autoarchive path is still local.  I don't understand why the path won't change.

--I am already aware of Microsoft's stance on PST files on a network share, so no need to elaborate on that.
--Also, I have a test OU and a group with test users to apply the GPO to.

I discovered the GPO deal DOES work, but only with NEW profiles.  This doesn't help me with existing outlook profiles - I cannot delete those, so it's not even an option.  I need to know how to make the PST redirection work...step-by-step on exisiting profiles.

Can anyone tell me what the problem is with getting the path to change on 2007 and 2010 and show me step-by-step how to correct this?  Also how can I do this for my Outlook 2003 too?  This is a production problem for me, so your assistance is GREATLY needed.

Question by:Monterio
    LVL 47

    Expert Comment

    Not sure if it can be done via GPO.

    If you use an Admin Install on Office 2007/2010
    There is an option in OUtlook\Misc to change the default location of PSTs and OSTs

    However, I believe these options, just as in the GPO, only work if they are local Locations

    Microsoft doesn not support PSTs on a network location.
    Which is why all PSTs are defaulted to be saved in My Documents

    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    -> this will determine the PST location for the user created PST Files and not for the auto-archive settings

    Individual AutoArchive settings not stored in registry

    How to set the location of an archive .pst file in Outlook

    note: in the above article, you need to concentrate @ AutoArchiveFileName

    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    If we want to do it from client itself.
    Here is a registry hack to force the PST Path. This can either be done before you add the account to Outlook or if you need to move existing PST files. In the later case you need to move the PST files from the default location to the new location as well.

    Close Outlook and Locate Outlook in the registry (regedit.exe).

    Outlook 2003: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\

    Outlook 2007: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\

    Outlook 2010: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\

    Then create a new Expandable String Value named ForcePSTPath and as value enter the path where you want the PST files to be.

    Now start Outlook and the new path should be used.

    I'm not sure but this artcile might have some info (there are 3 parts):

    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    Thanks for the response, gentlemen!  i do appreciate your assistance.  However, here's where I am with those suggestions:

    Apache09 - I'm aware of Microsoft's stance on this (as I noted in my question).  I know the GPO option is "do-able" because I've got it to work via GPO.  The problem is that it only works on new profiles, not existing.  Please refer to the 4th paragraph of my question.

    Alwayzexchange - I tried these settings and they only work on new profiles, not exisiting ones.

    e_aravind - I will try this, but I think it only works, again, with new profiles...I'll check and get back to you on this.  
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    Again, thanks to you all for your assitance.  I'll check back in shortly with the results.
    LVL 26

    Accepted Solution

    The reson for my .prf files is that
    - AutoArchiveFileName values can be best controlled by creating\modifying the Outlook profiles than a mere registry keys

    1. if needed we can create new profile along with the AutoArchiveFileName value
    2. modify the the existing profiles could be modified?
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    Brilliant work experts (and thanks to Monterio for asking a question that has been nagging at me!)

    As time permits, if anyone can solve my riddle, I would appreciate it greatly!

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