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Outlook 2003 - Error "Data File 'Personal Folders' was not closed properly"


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kurley's Avatar
kurley kurley is offline
Junior Member with 23 posts.
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Join Date: May 2005
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21-Sep-2005, 08:54 AM #1
Outlook 2003 - Error "Data File 'Personal Folders' was not closed properly"
Hey TSG,

STATISTICS:

Windows XP SP2 with all updates
MS Office 2003 with all updates
Windows is set up with 3 user profiles - error only occurs on "administrator"

PC appears to be clean: I run SPYBOT and AdAware regularly, and CCleaner and Registry Mechanic occasionally. I use fully updated Trend Micro PC-cillin Virus Protection and firewall.

PROBLEM:

For no apparent reason, when I open Outlook I get the message "Data file 'Personal Folders' was not closed properly. The file is being checked for problems" .....pause

...and then Outlook closes. (NOTE: any recommended solution that requires Outlook to be open cannot be applied). I have researched the Web forums and one suggestion was that the .pst file is too large. I back up the .pst file every night and last night's file was 352 meg which does not seem to be too big.

HELP!

Thanks,

kurley

PS: I can get e-mail on-line

Last edited by kurley; 21-Sep-2005 at 08:59 AM..
BannerGuy's Avatar
BannerGuy BannerGuy is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Experience: Software Support / Trouble Shooter
21-Sep-2005, 01:12 PM #2
Well the good news is that your .pst file is not too large... the maximum limit for previous versions of office .pst files was 2 GB... usually corruption occurs before this point though (post 1.5 GB is about the point where it becomes prominent), and with the new office 2003 4TB is the theoretical limit of your PST files.

One thing to try... move the location (into another folder) of your .pst file, so that the association of the outlook and the pst file is broken... see if this allows you to open outlook... if so try to remap to the .pst file in its new location, close outlook and see if the issue has been resolved or if it fails to open again.

If you are able to open outlook (with the pst disconnected) and the previous step has failed try using the import/export function and see if you can import your .pst file from the old (corrupted one) to a new one...

There are utilities out there that are able to check the integrity of .pst files, but right at the moment... it escapes me as to which are the recommended scanners.

Other suggestions are welcome...
kurley's Avatar
kurley kurley is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
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21-Sep-2005, 05:44 PM #3
Thanx Banner Guy,

(LATE BREAKING NEWS - after writing what follows below, I left .pst in another folder, started Outlook again, and I got the same error message but this time it stayed open. So I will keep it open while waiting with baited breath for your reply)
--------------------------------------
Pardon my "novice-icity".....

I Moved the .pst file, and Outlook opened and said it couldn't find pst, and opened a window so I could show it where to look. Then same message "Data file 'personal folders...." and Outlook again closed by itself immediately.

then you say...

"If you are able to open outlook (with the pst disconnected) [I ASSUME YOU MEAN MOVED TO A NEW LOCATION] and the previous
step has failed....

.... try using the import/export function and see if you can import
your .pst file from the old (corrupted one) to a new one."

This last phrase is confusing. Do you mean create a "new" .pst file? Then import the old one into it? Doesn't compute.

Also, if I can't keep Outlook open, how can I "import" anything?

Thanks,

kurley

Last edited by kurley; 21-Sep-2005 at 06:07 PM..
kurley's Avatar
kurley kurley is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Experience: Intermediate
22-Sep-2005, 07:29 PM #4
Hello Banner Guy et al,

Well, I messed around some more. I moved the .pst file back where it belonged in the Outlook folder (under C: Docs & settings\(user)\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook\Outlook.pst). Cold-booted, Outlook couldn't find it, showed where it is, and had the same problem! Rebooted again and problem went away, and hasn't returned today (crossed fingers).

Thanks for your help. Problem solved. (double crossed fingers).

kurley
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