1. Computer problem? Tech Support Guy is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations. Click here to join today! If you're new to Tech Support Guy, we highly recommend that you visit our Guide for New Members.

Compacting files in OE

Discussion in 'Web & Email' started by JohnO28356, Feb 16, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Advertisement
  1. JohnO28356

    JohnO28356 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2002
    Messages:
    865
    I have always compacted all folders under OE/File/Folders/Compact all folders as part of my weekly maintenance. I don't really know when this started, but when I click on "Compact all folders" the box with the progress bar just flashes on screen for a moment. It seems to me the box used to stay on screen and the progress bar moved across, but I may be wrong. What is "normal" if there is such a thing with MS? Thanks.
     
  2. EAFiedler

    EAFiedler Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2000
    Messages:
    14,146
    Hi JohnO28356

    The flashing and disappearing would be normal if you have a small amount of messages.

    If you used to run Windows 98 and have moved to Windows XP with a faster processor, the speed at which the compacting is done is significantly faster.

    One way to check if the compaction has truly run through all the folders, is to check the size of the Folders.dbx file first, note the size.
    After the compacting is completed check the size of the Folders.dbx file again.
    It should have a smaller file size.

    Do you have a lot of messages?
    Are you experiencing any other problems with Outlook Express?

    Let us know.
     
  3. sekirt

    sekirt

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2003
    Messages:
    3,998
    If you did it weekly, I can only assume you have a fair amount of emails. I just compacted mine. And it takes several minutes. Then just to verify that the amount of time would be approx the same, I did it again. The progress bar doesn't just zip across, even though the folders are fully compacted.

    What OS and version numbers?

    sekirt
     
  4. JohnO28356

    JohnO28356 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2002
    Messages:
    865
    Thanks for the responses. I have XPsp2, P4P800-E Deluxe, P4 3.0ghz, 512 RAM. I don't really get a lot of emails (10 - 12 per day). I just routinely compact weekly as part of normal maintenance. The reason I asked is that I haven't disabled the OE box that comes up periodically asking if I want the files compacted. I assumed ( a mistake, I know) that the box wouldn't come up if there wasn't an amount worth compacting. Anyway, the Folder.DBX is 72.9 kb, which I'm guessing is the empty folder size. I'm going to watch the folder size for a month or so, and see how large it gets without compacting.
     
  5. sekirt

    sekirt

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2003
    Messages:
    3,998
    This should give you some insight....seems you are familiar with most of this and the best way to compact. Now, with XP SP2, you can eliminate one of your weekly tasks. :D

    Compacting is similar to Defragging.
    OE is a Database program. When you delete messages from your folders in OE, the actual files that hold the information, only mark that item for removal later. Most databases work that way. Those OE files have the extension .DBX. They will continue to grow in size with wasted space, if not compacted. While compacting saves disk space, the main reason to compact is to help keep OE running smoothly and prevent corruption of the .DBX files. Compacting does nothing to your existing emails. Caution: Improper compacting can destroy your emails. When compacting by any method, leave your computer alone until it finishes. You should always check off, 'work offline' or actually be offline before compacting. Do not use any programs or open or close anything once it starts until it finishes.

    Manual compacting is available in all versions of OE. This is the best method to compact OE. Be sure you are offline or that offline is checked in File->Work Offline. Then click File->Folder->Compact all folders.

    If you have XP SP2, you will get a prompt to compact after 100 OE closings, which you should do. Then you should not be prompted again until OE is used 100 times.

    If you don't want to compact for reasons of your own and you are skilled in using the registry, check for the info at this key:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Identities\{GUID for Identity}\Software\Microsoft\Outlook Express\5.0

    Look in the right hand pane for "Compact Check Count" and reset its value to zero [0] and you will not be bothered again until the count of opening/closing again approaches 100.

    sekirt
     
  6. JohnO28356

    JohnO28356 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2002
    Messages:
    865
    Thanks, sekirt. Seems like the more I think I know about this box, the more I have to learn. Now that I know how the OE prompt works, I'll skip my weekly task, and compact in accordance with the OE prompt.
     
  7. EAFiedler

    EAFiedler Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2000
    Messages:
    14,146
    JohnO28356
    I was setting mine up last night to Compact All Folders, instead I clicked on the Compact Folder option, and the window just flashed by since my Inbox only had about 10 messages.

    Perhaps that is what happened?

    I compact at least once a month as I move a lot of newsgroup messages.

    sekirt
    Does Compact messages in the background need to be enabled before that String Value appears or is this setting with Service Pack 2?

    Is there a link you can post on this?

    I don't show that String Value in any of my Identities.
    Shesh, you never write, never call anymore....;)
     
  8. sekirt

    sekirt

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2003
    Messages:
    3,998
    I believe that if you still show "compact messages....etc" - then you do not have the new "100 compacting." Yes it is only with SP2. Sorry I don't have a link. I copied all the information on the registry edit and did not take notes.

    sekirt
     
  9. JohnO28356

    JohnO28356 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2002
    Messages:
    865
    I've got a question about the Folders.DBX file. After 11 days, I checked the size of the folder. It is still at 72.9. This is after approx 10 emails per day, and not compacting. Seems to me the file should be getting larger based on the responses above. Am I incorrect?
     
  10. sekirt

    sekirt

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2003
    Messages:
    3,998
    I believe Folders.dbx only contains information on folders. Not emails. Mine is approx 75KB right now. I haven't kept track of the size, yours is probably correct. Don't know the effect that compacting would have on it - unless maybe you deleted folders and compacted. Then is should shrink somewhat.

    sekirt
     
  11. Sponsor

As Seen On
As Seen On...

Welcome to Tech Support Guy!

Are you looking for the solution to your computer problem? Join our site today to ask your question. This site is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations.

If you're not already familiar with forums, watch our Welcome Guide to get started.

Join over 733,556 other people just like you!

Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Short URL to this thread: https://techguy.org/331508

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice