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Create Data Files (Personal Folders) in Outlook


Outlook Data Files, or Personal Folders, can be created in Microsoft Outlook so that you can store, manage, and archive your e-mail on your local computer's hard drive. By using Outlook Data Files, you may reduce the amount of space used on the central mail server, and avoid receiving warning messages that you are over quota.

Information Technology provides 500 MB of storage space for each Exchange e-mail account. To check how much space you are using, in Microsoft Outlook, right-click Mailbox - Your Full Name, and click Account Properties. The amount of space you are using will be visible under Mailbox Cleanup in the center window. Clicking the Cleanup Tools button to the left of Mailbox Cleanup, selecting Mailbox Cleanup, and clicking on View Mailbox Sizeā€¦ will show you the size of all folders in your account.

NOTE: It is important to remember that any messages in your Outlook Data Files are stored on your local computer's hard drive and not on the server. If your computer's hard drive ceases to work or the .pst file is deleted or becomes corrupted, the messages you've placed in this folder will be lost. To protect yourself from data loss, make certain to back up your .pst file regularly to another location such as your personal or departmental network storage on WAREHOUSE or other media such as a CD or removable USB drive.


  1. Creating an Outlook Data File in Microsoft Outlook 2010
    1. On the Home tab, in the New group, click New Items, point to More Items, and then click Outlook Data File.
    2. Select the location for your data file, enter a File name, and press OK. You will see the Outlook Data Files show up in the left hand navigation menu. They will appear below your UW account and will be alphabetized if you create more than one.
  2. Creating a Personal Folder in Microsoft Outlook 2007
    1. Select the File menu, point to New, and click Outlook Data File.
    2. In the New Outlook Data File window, select Office Outlook Personal Folders File (.pst), and click OK.
    3. In the Create or Open Outlook Data File window, in the File name box, enter a name for the file, and click OK.
    4. In the Create Microsoft Personal Folders window, in the Name box, enter a name to use for this folder if you would like it named other than Personal Folder, and click OK.
    5. The folder will now be listed in the All Mail Folders section of the Navigation Pane.


Reviewed: 0611 By: AH

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