Free Methods to Extract eMails From OST Files to PST

extract ost to pst

MS Outlook, one of the most widely deployed desktop email client, which deploys two data files for storing its entire data i.e PST or OST files. PST files are used for data storage when Outlook is configured with IMAP or POP3 protocol and OST file comes into use when Outlook is configured with Exchange Server.

This blog illustrates the method by which user can extract emails from OST files to PST manually as well as we suggest you some commercial utilities.

Possible Solutions to Extract Emails from OST Files to PST

Even though, both OST and PST files are associated with the same email client, they differ in their structure and functioning. Due to this very reason, the OST file data cannot be accessed in IMAP/POP3 account. Moreover, OST file data cannot be retrieved to PST format and vice versa. Therefore, the users need to opt for other solutions when it comes to extract OST file to PST.

Reason to Retrive Data Items from OST File

OST or Offline Storage Table is associated with Outlook when it is used in synchronization with Exchange Server. It stores a replica of the entire data stored in Exchange serve mailbox with which it is associated.

For every mailbox that resides on Exchange Server, a separate OST file is created for each mailbox, when Outlook is configured with Exchange. An OST file cannot be opened, exported or accessed in any other Outlook profile or machine except the profile or machine in which it was created.

Necessity to Extract OST file to PST

There are many scenarios wherein an Outlook user might require to extract emails from OST files to PST Outlook. They are:

  • The foremost reason for retrieve data from outlook OST file is to take out the data that resides in it when it is orphaned. An OST file is orphaned when the Exchange mailbox to which it belongs is deleted somehow. Therefore, in order to access the data residing in an orphan OST file, the only way out is to extract the entire data from it.
  • As discussed earlier, an OST file belonging to a particular profile cannot be accessed in any other Outlook profile or in any other machine. Therefore, if a user comes across an OST file that was not created on the same machine, the user will require to extract data from OST file and save it in a PST file.

Extract OST to PST Manually

The users can extract data from OST file and access it in PST file with the help of the below-mentioned steps:

STEP 1 :- Open Outlook profile that is synchronized with Exchange.

STEP 2 :- Create a new PST file.

STEP 3 :- Select and move the required emails, contacts, calendars etc. to the PST file.

Limitations :- The above-mentioned method does not apply to the OST files that have been corrupted or are orphan.

Alternate Solution to Retrieve Data from Outlook OST file

An alternate solution to extract emails from OST files along with other items like contacts, calendars etc. is OST recovery. The solution recovers data from inaccessible and orphan OST files and saves it in a new PST file, which can be later on accessed in Outlook. It ensures complete extraction of entire OST file data and saves it in PST file. It supports recovery and conversion of data from corrupt and orphan OST files. It is one of the best solution to extract contacts from OST file along with other data items.


Q:- I am trying to extract items from OST file manually but had faced lot of issues and also I am not able to retrieve orphaned OST file. In this case I would like to ask if this OST Recover solution works for orphaned OST files or not?
A:- Yes Of-course, OST Extractor alternate method is aimed to retrieve orphaned or corrupted OST file in some terms and conditions. Read more for more information... read more

Q:- Can we also extract contacts from OST. If so then please elaborate the ways to extract exchange database to PST at all.
A:- Yes, the methods mentioned in above sections are used to completely retrieve data from outlook OST file. Meanwhile you can extract OST email along with contacts and other exchange database entities also. Methods are properly defined too, either you can extract OST data manually or with the help of alternative method.


This blog has been aimed to define a method by which users can retrieve or extract emails from OST files to PST easily along with attachments, contacts & calendars.

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