Cannot open your default email folders. The file OST is not an offline folder file

Understanding the Prelude of Offline File Folder Inaccessibility with Complete Resolution

When do Outlook files and folders become inaccessible? It could be when the file itself is corrupt or there may be some other technical malfunctioning that inhibits the user from accessing the files and folders. If one tries to understand the reason of Outlook file inaccessibility, then several reasons are to be considered. Since the accountability of different reasons may vary differently, therefore, locating the exact reason for such issue must be the sole focus of the user.

Offline Folder Inaccessibility – A Prelude

"Cannot open your default email folders. The file OST is not an offline folder file."

If such message flashes on the screen, then it clearly indicates that OST files are corrupt. It could be Outlook version issue or issue with exchange servers. The professionals classify the reasons for occurrence of such issue under:

  • The Outlook file may have some compatibility issue and due to such issue the OST files are inaccessible. Finally, the Outlook may send the report.
  • The OST files are synced with Exchange Servers. If in any case the sync of Outlook OST files is failed, the inaccessibility issue may arrive.

These reasons are accountable for the occurrence of such types of error. Some common examples are as follows:

  • Technical snag between Outlook files and Exchange Server connectivity.
  • Accidental deletion of email account for the Exchange Mailbox.
  • Deletion of email account form Exchange Server.
  • Typo error in Outlook account details. Not recognized by Exchange Server.
  • Setting up of exchange account by mistake while having mail account based on HTTP, IMAP and POP3.

So, in such case the user remains with no choice. Either the set up is to be changed from starting or some professional assistance is to be taken.

Though there is one option to run the Outlook application in safe mode using outlook /safe command in the Windows run box but it will open the application only if the Outlook Add-ins is the problem. This Add-ins can be easily disabled or removed through the Outlook options section.

Consider other solutions if the Add-ins was not the actual issue.

Managing OST file/folder Inaccessibility

To manage the OST file inaccessibility, Microsoft provides an option of alteration in Outlook settings. This manual setting can be performed by any user without any technical knowledge. To perform manual settings, user must follow these steps:

The installation of hotfix package can be done as follows:

  1. Click ‘Start’ followed by ‘Control Panel’ button.
  2. In the search box type ‘Mail’. Once the results are displayed, click on ‘Mail’.
  3. Under ‘Mail’ window, go to ‘Show Profiles’.
  4. Select the profile and click ‘Remove’
  5. Add new profile by clicking on ‘Add’ option
  6. Enter the necessary credentials required to set up the new profile
  7. Restart the Outlook application.
  8. Now, copy the PST file created by the tool and paste it to the fresh OST file.

These steps contribute to the successful creation of fresh OST files without any risks. However, the manual process is bit time consuming and requires dedication to perform every step.

Turning Off the Compatibility Mode

The error may be possible if the Outlook is running in the Compatibility Mode. Here you can do your part for fixing the error by manually turning off the Compatibility Mode in the application. Check out the steps.

  1. Go to the C:\ -> Program Files -> Microsoft Office -> Office xx location based on your Office version and then search out the outlook.exe file and right-click on it. Then select the Properties option.
  2. Now, on the outlook.exe Properties page, switch to the Compatibility tab and unselect the checkbox saying Run this program in compatibility mode for option under the Compatibility mode section.
  3. Then click on OK and start the Microsoft Outlook application to check if the issue is resolved.

This process is helpful only if the Outlook was running in the Compatibility mode.

To manage timings and precise recovery of the defective OST files which are prompting message 'The file OST is not an offline folder file', it is professionally advised to take assistance from third-party OST to PST Converter tool designed to fix such files without losing their content integrity and other file properties. The entire process merely takes few minutes to deliver joyful results.


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