How to Open Outlook PST Data File in Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007 or 2003

Last updated on April 1st, 2017

In previous tutorials I had mentioned the proper way to backup or restore Outlook data (Mail, Calendar, Contacts,Tasks). In this tutorial you will learn how to open an old Outlook PST data file, in order to view (explore) it's contents or to transfer any information (e-mail, contacts, etc.) that stored in the old Outlook data file to the active Outlook Personal Folders. 

In this tutorial you 'll find detailed instructions on how to open an Outlook PST file, in order to view its contents.

How to Open Outlook PST Data File (Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, 2003)

Suggestion: If you have stored the Outlook PST in an external storage media (e.g. a USB disk), then proceed and copy the Outlook PST file to you local disk, before opening the Outlook archive.

1. Open Outlook and from main menu go to: File > Open > Data file.

Open Outlook PST


2. Locate the Outlook PST file (e.g. “Outlook.pst”) on your local disk (the location you copied it in Step 1, e.g.“My Documents\OutlookData”) and choose OK.



3. Now inside Outlook you should have two (2) “Personal Folders” under “All Mail Folders” section:



4. Expand the 2nd “Personal folder” to view all the contents of the recently opened Outlook PST data file.

–  To avoid the confuse with the two "Personal Folders" groups, you can rename the 2nd "Personal Folders" group to any name you prefer. To do that, follow the instructions below:

How to rename the secondary "Personal Folders" in Microsoft Outlook:

1. “Right click” at the mail folder you want to rename and from the drop-down menu choose “Properties”.


2. At “Personal Folders Properties” window, choose “Advanced”.


3. At “Personal folder” settings properties, go to “Name:” section and type the name you want.

1f. Then press “OK” (twice) and start working with your Outlook application again.


(Screenshot after renaming Outlook Personal Folders)



That it! Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.

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