This blog focusses on educating users as of how to change the location of Outlook OST file. Read on to know the different ways in which you can do so. Also, in the end, it is recommended to users that they convert Outlook OST to PST file format for reasons that are quite convincing.
Changing the default location of Outlook OST file can be a dire need of users at times. And, there can be several reasons for the same. Well, OST to PST conversion can also be an alternative to this. Nonetheless, to change OST file location follow the methods that have been mentioned in the sections to come.
Changing the default location for Outlook OST files using manual methods
The following are the manual methods using which users can alter the default location of Outlook offline data (OST) files.
Method 1: Using Registry Trick – By using the Registry Trick method users can change the location of their OST file irrespective of the Outlook version, be it Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, or 2003 all of which use a different location to store their OST files.
The steps to change the default location of OST files are as follows:
Press both Windows and R key simultaneously so that the Run dialog box appears. In the Run box, type in regedit and click on the OK
Figure 1: Run dialog box
The Registry Editor is launched. In it, use the appropriate keys that depend on the version of Outlook in use.
In the right-hand-side pane of Registry Editor right-click on an empty area. Then, select New > Expandable String Value as shown in the figure below.
Figure 2: Selection of Expandable String Value in the Registry Editor
A new Value is created. In the Edit String dialog box, assign ForceOSTPath name to the Value and enter the new default location to save the OST file generated by Exchange account. Then, click on the OK
Figure 3: Edit String to enter value name and value data
Close Registry Editor and restart MS Outlook.
Note – With this, whenever a new Exchange email account is set a new OST file will be created automatically in the new default location of OST file that is chosen.
Method 2: Using Outlook email client – In this method, users need to know the default location of OST files that depend on the version of Windows OS. Also, this applies to Outlook 2013, 2010, 2007, and 2003.
In Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, and Windows Vista the default location of the OST file is as follows:
In Windows XP, the default OST file location is as follows:
C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook
Open the Account Settings dialog box and select the Data Files
Select Exchange Server account and then the Settings
Figure 4: Selecting Settings tab in Data Files section
In Microsoft Exchange account, go to the Advanced section, uncheck the Use Cached Exchange Mode check box and then click on the OK
Figure 5: Actions in Advanced section of Microsoft Exchange account
On the occasion of the prompt, click on the OK tab and then select Settings
In the Advanced tab, choose Outlook Data File Settings > Disable Offline Use > Yes.
Note: If the Disable Offline Use option is unavailable, return to Step 3 and uncheck the Use Cached Exchange Mode check box.
Choose Outlook Data File Settings and then select ‘I want to move the old file’ option. Here, select the Browse tab, then the offline Outlook Data (OST) file that was moved to a new folder at any location, and then the Open
Click on the OK
In the Advanced section of Microsoft Exchange account, place a check mark on the Use Cached Exchange Mode check box, click on the OK tab, and again click on the OK tab when it prompts to restart Outlook email client.
Close both, the Account Settings and the Mail Setup dialog boxes.
In the Mail dialog box click on the OK
Note: When a new offline Outlook Data (OST) File is created the old OST file is not deleted automatically. You can delete the old file manually.
Free of cost
Involves risk of data loss
Requires more time for completion
Involves risk of complete failure
The best way forward to change OST file location
As has been discussed above in the blog, the manual methods to change the location of OST file possesses a number of disadvantages. Therefore, considering all those, it is better to go for an alternate. Going forward, the best way to deal with this issue is to convert the OST files into PST format. With this, users would be able to access the stored Outlook data items in Outlook on any Windows system. Well, to do so, users can go for Stellar Converter for OST that has the capability to convert OST to PST files easily and quickly.
Software Recommendations by Top Editors:
Above all, it can be brought in use even if the OST file is damaged or corrupt and is compatible with several versions of Microsoft Office, such as 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003, 2002 (XP), and 2000.
Check out what MVP says about OST to PST Tool from Stellar.