What is the best way to back up pst

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Rupert Dragwater

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2013 64 bit
Email Account
POP3
I've watched a video here as to backing up Outlook 2013, which I think takes in email addresses, different email addresses and their sub directories. That video is here ...

My question is, am I understanding that video correctly in what I've stated above and is this the best way to backup Outlook 2013? It's going into the Registry and copying My Profiles to say, another Drive, such as an External Drive or a Thumbdrive. Also am I correct in assuming this does take in my various email addresses, the email folders and their sub directories? Oh do please advise. Thanks.
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
If you export the profile keys, it includes the account setup, other than the passwords. You need to copy the data files and other support files separately.

Note that we don't recommend exporting the profile keys for use on a different computer as they contain values that point to the current computer's user account. You can use it as a backup if you need to reset the current computer though. What to backup in Outlook 2013 and newer
 

Rupert Dragwater

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2013 64 bit
Email Account
POP3
I've never followed these rules for backing up email accounts, directories and subdirectories and email addresses. It seems some places one reads, it simply states to go to the Export Import in Outlook and export the pst file and import it should Outlook explode or crash. Then others are saying do not do it that way. My question remains, why does Microsoft put that in the program itself if it is not the best way to do it.
You mention about copying the data files and other files ... what other files? I've not read the link you've given me yet but it looks like a long scroll, almost too much to take in. Tell me what's in that is simple and easy or is there just a more simple way for us simple minded folk? The exporting of the Registry keys would be for another computer of mine, so shouldn't that be ok?Thanks for the reply by the way.
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
to go to the Export Import in Outlook and export the pst file
The main reason for not doing this is that it doesn't include hidden data - rules, custom views, custom forms. It also changes the last modified date, which can affect archiving, and can mess up meeting requests. If you leave mail on the server, it may (not always though), keep the old mailbox manager file so you don't download duplicates. You may not use any of these, so no big deal... but it's usually a lot easier to find the pst and copy it (with outlook closed).

Other files would include custom ribbon and qat (for all office apps), custom dictionary, signatures, custom templates & stationery, macros.
The exporting of the Registry keys would be for another computer of mine, so shouldn't that be ok?
There are values that uses the computer name/ id and the user path - C:\users\username\... if the username is the same on both, you'll have fewer problems but the computer name may still be an issue. Exporting other settings from the registry - like options- is fine. It's only the profile that can cause problems.

You can try it, and if outlook acts goofy, make a new profile and point the accounts to the old pst files.
 

Rupert Dragwater

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2013 64 bit
Email Account
POP3
As usual Diane, you always make sense. Appreciate the explanation. You're light years ahead of most, so from where I sit (or stand) it might be best if you and your family were living next door! Thank you so much for your expertise! :)
 
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