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how to reduce outlook PST size

Posted on 2014-09-22
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Last Modified: 2016-07-20
how can i reduce the size of an outlook PST file, it has grown to more than 15Gb
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Question by:EHM001
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by:rhandels
ID: 40336306
You do know that it is only supported up to 2GB??
The only way to reduce it is to remove mails from the PST file (or move them to another newly created empty PST file) and shrink it afterwards.
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Larry Struckmeyer MVP earned 168 total points
ID: 40336312
Delete some messages?  Use the built in archive feature?  You don't say what version of Outlook, but they all include a "compact" feature that will remove some white space, so search "outlook 20xx compact pst".
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by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 166 total points
ID: 40336366
I agree with archiving and compacting. Also try a newer version of Outlook with the newer PST format. Outlook 2007 and beyond in the new format supports 20 Gb..
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LVL 24

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by:Phillip Burton
ID: 40336395
I believe that Outlook 2003 upwards supports PST in excess of 2Gb.

To compress a PST that you are currently using, go to Start - Control Panel - Mail - E-Mail Accounts (or Show Profiles and select the relevant profile and Properties if you are using profiles) - Data Files - Settings - Compact Now.
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by:Larry Struckmeyer MVP
ID: 40336407
And I forgot... pull off (save as) attachments.  Mail is not a good place to store files, particularly big attachments.
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Assisted Solution

by:zalazar
zalazar earned 166 total points
ID: 40337690
The maximum size of a .pst (or .ost) file depends on the Outlook version.
In Outlook 2002 and earlier, the .pst files are in the ANSI (American National Standards Institute) format and the size is indeed limited to 2 GB (1.933 GB).

Since Outlook 2003 .pst files are in Unicode format.
The default limit (MaxLargeFileSize) which is set in Outlook for a Unicode .pst file is 20 GB in Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2007 and 50 GB for Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013.
But in fact you can higher this limit by modifying the registry.
The official (MaxFileSize) limit is not 20 or 50 GB but 4 TB since the limit of the MaxFileSize registry entry is 4294967295 (4 TB - 1).
The theoretical maximum value for Unicode .pst files is even higher and about 33 TB.

You can read more about it via these URL's:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/832925/en
http://www.slipstick.com/outlook/2003/new-features-in-outlook-2003/
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Expert Comment

by:Marshal Hubs
ID: 40341309
If you want to reduce the size of PST file, then you can take help of the third party tools like Stellar Phoenix Compact PST, that effectively compacts Microsoft Outlook PST files by splitting attachments from messages and minimizes the risk of PST file corruption due to oversizing.
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by:Larry Struckmeyer MVP
ID: 41713407
Question was answered multiple times.  Maybe leave for others with same question to find, even if no points can be awarded.  But I do believe points should be awarded.
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41713414
https:#a40336312 (Archive)
https:#a40336366 (newer Outlook with bigger limits)  and
https:#a40337690 

all properly address this question.
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