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How to Fix Common Microsoft Outlook Bugs and Errors

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[fa icon="pencil'] Posted by Lewan Solutions [fa icon="calendar"] August 21, 2015

Do any of these issues sound familiar?


  • Missing some email (can be anywhere in your mailbox – Inbox, subfolders, deleted items, sent items, etc.
  • Continuous or repeated prompts for password when you know your credentials are correct
  • Inability to delete, move, or send items
  • Search either failing or not returning all items
  • General poor performance or behavior

A likely answer is that you might benefit by rebuilding your Outlook profile.

This is a very straightforward process that generally takes just minutes to complete. You will just need your email’s setup information – most corporate mail systems today use Microsoft Outlook and a functionality called “auto discover,” in which case all you need is to be connected to your corporate network.

If you are not sure if you have auto discover, test by the following:

  1. Close Outlook
  2. Open “Control Panel” by clicking the Start button, then select “Control Panel”
  3. If set to “View by: Category” in the top right of the window, click dropdown and select “Small Icons”
  4. Select “Mail (32-bit)” or “Mail” – you will only have one
  5. Select “Show Profiles”
  6. Click Add, enter anything for the name and click Ok
  7. Enter your information (Name, Email Address, and password for your email account)
  8. Click Next. Outlook will search for server settings – if it finds them, Autodiscover is configured and functional in your environment.
  9. Click Cancel, and then Cancel again to back out to your mail profiles


First, make note of any PST files (archives) you’re using by selecting your current profile (at step 5 above) and selecting “Properties,” then “Data Files.” Note the location of any files, you will need to re-add these.

  1. Ensure Outlook is closed.
  2. Click your Start buton, then copy and paste “ %localappdata%\Microsoft\Outlook “ into the search area and hit enter.
  3. Windows will open a file browser.
  4. Windows 7: Select Tools > Folder Options > Select “View” tab > Uncheck “Hide extensions for known file types” and click OK.
  5. Windows 8/8.1: Select View > Click “Options” > Select “View tab > Uncheck “Hide extensions for known file types” and click OK.
  6. Locate your Outlook Data File – it will end in .OST and is generally named after your email address [email@company.com - etc.OST].
  7. Right click this file, select rename, and append “.bak” or “.old” to the file name. Windows will ask if you want to do this. Select Yes to confirm the change.
  8. Go back to your Mail profiles (Start > Control Panel > Mail (32-bit) > Show Profiles.
  9. Remove your current email profile(s) you are rebuilding.
  10. Select Add, enter the information requested, and complete the email account configuration.
  11. Open Outlook.

If you continue to experience issues:

  1. Go through steps 1-9 above again.
  2. At step 10 above after you’ve entered your information and Outlook has located your server settings, tick the box by “Manually configure server settings” and click Next.
  3. Uncheck “Use Cached Exchange Mode,” and then click Finish.
  4. Open Outlook.

Don’t forget to add your archives you noted earlier:

  1. When Outlook opens, select File > Account Settings > Account Settings > Data Files tab > Add…
  2. Browse to your archive(s) and add them, then Finish/Close when done.

If you still experience issues related to sending/receiving mail at this point, reach out to your IT team to investigate further or contact us to learn more about our managed end user help desk services. Lewan is a Silver Certified Microsoft Solutions Partner.

Topics: How To Guide, Microsoft Outlook, Email Security

Lewan Solutions
Written by Lewan Solutions

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