Outlook Error: “The Path Specified for the PST File is not Valid”

Summary: When the PST file is moved to another location or is corrupted, you may encounter the Outlook error – “The Path Specified for the PST file is not Valid”. In this post, we’ve outlined some easy ways with stepwise instructions to fix this Outlook error.

Microsoft Outlook, when configured with POP account, stores all the mailbox items and settings for the associated user profile in a Personal Storage Table (PST) file on your system.

Sometimes, you encounter an error “The Path Specified for the PST file is not Valid”, when launching your Outlook application.

"The Path Specified for the PST file is not Valid" error window

This error occurs if the PST file doesn’t exist in the specified location or is moved to a different location or it’s corrupted. In this post, we discuss some easy ways to fix this Outlook error. But before proceeding further, let’s see where the PST file is located on your system.

By default, Outlook Data File is located in the following locations, based on the version of Outlook you are using:

Outlook VersionPST File Location
Outlook 2007drive:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook
Outlook 2010drive:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook
Outlook 2019, 2016, & 2013drive:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

You can also find the location of the PST file by following these steps:

1. Go to Control Panel > Mail (Outlook) > Data Files

Mail Accounts Settings in Windows

2. Select the PST file and click Open File Location

Note: You can also note the path of the PST file and reach the folder manually.

If you can’t find the PST file in the location configured in Outlook, it means the file is moved to another location from its original location. If you had moved the file intentionally to another location, you may know the exact location. Otherwise, you can search for the PST file by using the Search function in Windows.

If you are able to locate the file, you can move it back to the original location and restart Outlook. This may fix the “Output file not valid” issue. If you can’t locate the file, you can recover it from a backup (if you have it).

If you find the PST file in the original location, it indicates that the PST file is corrupted. In such a case, you need to repair the file to resolve the corruption issues. For this, you can use MS Outlook’s inbuilt repair utility – Inbox Repair Tool or ScanPST.

How to use ScanPST to Repair PST File?

To repair PST file by using ScanPST, follow these steps:

Step 1: Find scanpst.exe in your system

Depending on the Windows and Outlook version you are using, ScanPST.exe can be found in the following locations:

In Office 2016

  • 32-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16\
  • 64-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16\

In Outlook 2013

  • 32-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\
  • 64-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office15\

In Outlook 2010

  • 32-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\
  • 64-bit Outlook: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\

In Outlook 2007

  • 32-bit Windows: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12\
  • 64-bit Windows: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\

Step 2: Run Scanpst.exe

Once you located the scanpst.exe, run the utility by double-clicking it and then follow these steps:

  • Click Browse and select the PST file you want to repair
  • Click Start to scan the PST file

If the tool finds errors in the file, click Make backup of scanned file before repairing.

  • Click Repair to initiate the repair process

After scanpst.exe has successfully repaired the PST file, relaunch Outlook to see if the ‘PST file is not Valid’ erroris fixed. However, sometimes, ScanPST fails to repair severely corrupted or large-sized PST file. In such a case, you can use an advanced Outlook PST recovery tool to repair the PST file.

Why Stellar Repair for Outlook?

Stellar Repair for Outlookis an enterprise-grade software that can even repair severely corrupt and large-sized PST files. It can recover all mailbox items such as emails, attachments, contacts, notes, etc., with 100% accuracy and safety.  

Following are some reasons why Stellar Repair for Outlookis the perfect PST repair tool:

  • Offers PST recovery for Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and older versions
  • Exports recovered PST file directly to Office 365 (Technician Edition)
  • Repairs password-protected and severely corrupted PST files

How to Use Stellar Repair for Outlook to Repair Damaged and Corrupted PST File?

To use Stellar Repair for Outlook, follow these steps:

1. Download and install Stellar Repair for Outlook.

2. Launch the software and click Select Outlook PST under Home tab.

Select PST File for Repair window

3. From Select PST File for Repair window, click Browse and locate the PST file on your system. If you don’t know the location of the file, click Find.

4. Once the file is selected, click Repair to start the scanning.

Repairing PST File window

After scanning is completed, a list of all repaired files and folders in the PST file appears. 

5. Select the items that you want to save and click Save Repaired File under Home tab.

PST items preview window

6. When Save As window pops up, select PST from the available file formats and then click Browse.

Save As window offering multiple file formats

7. Provide the location where you want to save the PST file on your system and click OK to finish the process.

Now move the repaired PST file to the original location and launch Outlook. This should fix the ‘PST file is not Valid’ error.

Conclusion

You may encounter the Outlook error “The Path Specified for the PST file is not Valid”, when the PST file is moved from its original location or is corrupt/damaged. Usually, you can resolve this problem by locating the PST file and moving it back to the original location. However, if the PST file is corrupt, you can use ScanPST to fix minor corruption issues. If this doesn’t work, you can use a dedicated PST repair software such as Stellar Repair for Outlook that can repair severely corrupted PST file of any size.

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