Fix Error “Cannot open Outlook data file” with 3 Easy Steps

In Short:- In this guide, we will discuss the reasons behind the error Cannot open outlook data file. Also, you will get the solution to fix this Outlook error by using the easy techniques available in the post. And after reading this post you will be able to move the data of the corrupted PST file to a new PST file.

Microsoft Outlook created the OST file when the users do the configuration of their account with Exchange settings. All the copies of mailbox data get saved in the OST file format.

But sometimes the users had to face the error in the PST file like user cannot open Outlook data file or PST files become inaccessible. So let’s know the causes behind this error.

Reasons behind the error Outlook PST file cannot be Opened

So here I listed the most common reasons that can lead to the error “PST file cannot be opened” which are :-

  • PST file gets corrupt, inaccessible, or deleted
  • Crash of the MS Outlook application due to sudden power or hardware failure
  • Oversized of the PST file from its limit
  • Virus attack, unexpected shutdown of the system or errors of the Outlook, etc.

Methods to Fix Error Cannot open Outlook Data File

Below I shared the 3 best techniques that helps users to fix the error of PST file.

Method 1. Close all the Programs

To resolve the PST file error you had to search and shut down all the programs that have direct connections to the PST file. To know that any process of the Outlook is operating in the background and to stop them follow the given steps:-

  • Do right click on the area of the task bar
  • Now you will see various option click on the task manager
  • Then tap on More Details and visit the Processes tab
  • Here you need to search out the process with names of ‘outlook’, ‘communicator’, ‘Lync’, ‘UCMAPI’ and stop all these processes. You can stop them by clicking on the process and then tap on end task
  • In las just exit from the Task Manager and again open the MS Outlook.

Method 2. Launch MS Outlook in Safe Mode

By starting the MS Outlook in safe mode it will deactivate all the add-on plugins. And if you didn’t find any issue in the safe mode just it means the problem is occurring due to plugins. Now follow the below steps:-

  • Close the MS Outlook application and press windows + r
open outlook in safe mode
  • Under the open section enter  outlook.exe / safe and click ok
  • If the PST file error fixed just visit the File>Options>Add-ins and deactivate all add-ins
  • Then start the MS Outlook and start activating add ins one by one to identify the faulty add-in. 

Method 3. Using SysInspire Outlook PST Converter Software

If the above-mentioned doesn’t work for you then you can use SysInspire PST Converter software. This software allows the users to fix any type of error like Cannot open outlook data file without any data loss.

Follow the below steps to resolve the PST file errors:-

  • Download the PST recovery software from the official website of SysInspire
  • Open the software and click on the select PST button available on the top left menu bar
  • Now in the next window click on the Select PST to choose the corrupted PST file and tap start scanning
  • Then the software scans the selected PST file and fixes all its errors
  • Now you can see all the items stored in the PST file. Choose the needed item and tap on save PST
  • In the next window choose the export to PST option
  • And click ok to start saving the data to a new PST file and you will see a confirmation message after the completion of the process.


I hope you will be able to fix error Cannot open outlook data file by following the steps available in this post. And if the error is not fix after using the manual method then using SysInspire PST Converter software will be the best choice. To operate this software you don’t need any professional knowledge its easy to use.

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