Friday, September 26, 2008

Default location of Microsoft Outlook pst files

If you're an Microsoft Outlook user, but aren't using a Microsoft Exchange server, then you know how important pst files are. However, you may not know where they are on your machine. This is important for backup reasons, and also in case you ever need to move them to a new computer. They are stored in different locations, depending on which version of Windows you're using. They're also hidden from view, unless you explicitly select to show hidden files.

First off, you need to show hidden files. You can do this by going to My Computer->Tools->Folder Options, and then go to View and select Show hidden files and folders. Now, the location depends on your OS.

If you're running Windows XP, the default pst file location is:
C:\Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook
where username needs to be replaced with your username on the computer.

If you're a Windows Vista user, then you can find the pst file(s) at

You can always select a different location for the pst when you first create it, but if you don't remember where you put it then it's most likely in the default location. For information regarding nk2 files, which are responsible for saving your auto-fill lists, refer to my earlier post. Those locations are also the default locations for ost files that are used when you have an Microsoft Exchange account setup. You don't have to worry about those though because as long as your email resides on the Exchange server, you'll have a backup of it there.

No comments: