Outlook to host or not to host?

Say, I'm looking for a single user hosted Outlook solution as I move between 2 desktops. Currently, I have Outlook installed on both the desktops using imap but only have access to my stored folder (PST file) on the one. I wish to be able to log into Outlook  from each site and get all the stored folders.

I am aware of 2 ways of going about this: 1. To use a hosted service 2. to run Exchange Server on a hosted PC. It would be rather costly to run Exchange Server for a single user. This solution is needed in South Africa and what options do you suggest ?

The suggestion of using Gmail Apps has come up. How does this compare to Outlook? Would this accommodate my Outlook stored folders (they are currently stored in a PST file)
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Mark GalvinManaging Director / Principal ConsultantCommented:

Do you have a budget?

Have you looked at Office 365? Exchange Online may give you what you need https://products.office.com/en-gb/exchange/compare-microsoft-exchange-online-plans
shaunwinginAuthor Commented:
Yes, have budget - does the above support my stored PST file data? Would I upload it its only a couple of Gig.
Mark GalvinManaging Director / Principal ConsultantCommented:

Totally. You will be able to import the PST back into your mailbox. Take a few hours, depending on your upload speed but yes you can do that.

If you go for the second option you will also get unlimited in-line archive too.
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shaunwinginAuthor Commented:
Pls give instructions on how to upload pst file - can't find any in trial account.

The offline access - if have 2 Desktops - will this work?

Can I keep my existing imap accounts - and how would I import them? domains are : @icon.co.za @a1telecoms.co.za @gmail.com
Davis McCarnOwnerCommented:
1) IMAP is showing what is on the server so your issue is the older emails located in the PST file are not showing in IMAP.
2) If you copy the PST file to a folder on PC#2 and then import it into Outlook, both machines will have the same email.
or 3) The ability to upload that PST to your current webhost and then import it into his/her email is completely dependent on the hosting company and nobody but them can help you achieve that if you want to go that route.

In answer to your original question; exchange hosting is about the only way to have shared calenders, tasks, and meetings in Outlook; but, it won't affect your email issue at all.
shaunwinginAuthor Commented:
Pls give instructions on how to upload pst file into Office 365? Exchange Online  - can't find any in trial account.
Davis McCarnOwnerCommented:
We can't give you instructions on how to upload the PST file.  Only your webhosting company can help you with that and they may not do it at all or, they may want to charge you a fee to do so.

That is why I suggested importing the PST on the second PC.
shaunwinginAuthor Commented:
I'm referring to the  Office 365 Exchange Online  offering fro Microsoft - see
Davis McCarnOwnerCommented:
And, in the top left corner of that page is "Click to Call" which is the only way you will find out if you can do what you want.  If I try it, I'll get an entirely different team here in the U.S.

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