5 Reasons Why Your MS Outlook PST File Has Become Corrupt

Microsoft Outlook is commonly used as a popular email client in businesses to send and receive messages and files, organize meetings, make the best use of the calendar feature, and so on. You can also manage your contacts easily.

Amidst the many benefits, Outlook is not free from PST file corruption.

What is PST file corruption, you ask? Well, PST means personal storage table, which is nothing more than an MS file format. It helps in storing messages and calendar events.

Though email systems have multiple benefits, there are issues related to virus threats. According to an article published by BBC, emails are vulnerable to viruses, especially through file attachments.

PST files are prone to severe damage like virus attacks. In this article, you will learn about the five reasons your Outlook PST file may corrupt so you can take steps to avoid such attacks. Read on to learn more.

1. Auto Recovery is disabled

As far as Auto Recovery is concerned, it stores the backup files if the core PST file becomes corrupt. It may be active when users upgrade to the latest version, turning it on and leaving the same in that very state.

It’s known as Auto Recovery, and when any sudden issue leads to file damage, it would automatically help in recovering the key PST file.

If you aren’t familiar with the setting, you may face a PST file corruption problem caused due to physical damage to your PC or laptop and the unexpected computer shutdown.

MS Outlook does not provide for any low disk space conditions as it takes longer to compress older files to accommodate new files. And so, inadequate space will lead to PST files becoming corrupt.

To resolve this issue, check the Auto Recovery option by going to File > Options > Advanced

You can resolve the issue by checking the Auto Recovery option. Here is how:

  • Go to File
  • Go to Options
  • Choose Advanced
  • Ensure to check ‘Keep a backup copy of each Outlook data file .pst.’

It must be done as default; however, it is better to confirm it. Make sure you keep all PST files on a different partition and a distinct drive.

2. Spam Filters or Corrupt Exchange Server Profile is set erroneously

Though this issue is relatively rare, it is not impossible if one is using MS Outlook with an Exchange server.

This server sieves every incoming and outgoing email, saving those in the local folders. Now, this means the spam emails are screened via the exchange server. You need to verify if this is the issue. All you need to do is check the ‘Junk Emails’ folder.

Spam messages in the junk folder signify you did not receive them on the server as these messages are filtered locally.

You can repair outlook by checking the spam filter guidelines of the Exchange account. A PST file may become corrupt when the rules aren’t appropriately configured and if there’s any additional problem with the server.

3. PST file damaged due to hardware failure

It means the failure of storage devices, power issues, and network link challenges. The existence of bad sectors in which the PST file remains stored damages that file.

Where there is remote access to any PST file, it becomes susceptible to damage, especially if there are issues related to the network link, such as the interface cards, server, network hubs, routers, and additional hardware in the link. Power outage when you’re accessing a PST file might make the file damaged or corrupt.

4. Virus attacks

Virus occurrences on the PST file result in making it corrupt. The common PC viruses that damage PST files are Blebla, Stages, Mellissa, and warm explore zip.

These viruses make the PST file unreachable. To overcome this challenge, you need to install a first-rate and licensed antivirus application to repair a corrupt or damaged PST file to avert attacks in the future.

5. Software problems

It implies incorrect data recovery processes, tools, inapt Outlook shutdown, virus attacks, and an ineffective Outlook program.

Inaccurate file system recovery frequently harms PST files, making them corrupt. These entail overwriting with useless data, flawed recovery tools and techniques, poor expertise in recovering files, and improper grouping of otherwise accurate data blocks.

You can repair a corrupt PST file by leveraging the apt tools and employing accurate recovery processes.


The common causes of PST file damage are because of hardware and software issues apart from human mistakes.

To overcome these problems, you need to buy superlative antivirus software and hardware. You can fix human errors by shutting down your computer properly. If the problem is far more critical, you can invest in the Outlook repair tool.

Maria Jones

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