How to Create a New Profile

Last reviewed on March 23, 2013   —  27 comments

The following tutorial shows you how to create a new profile in Microsoft Outlook. The second part of the tutorial shows how to use an existing personal store (pst) with a newly created profile. For best results, always add the *.pst to the new profile before you open the new profile in Outlook.

    Mail icon in Control panel

  1. Open the Mail profile dialog. You can do this from the Start menu or Desktop link to Outlook by right clicking on the icon and choosing Properties (shown in the video). In Outlook 2007 and up, you need to double click on the Mail icon in the Control Panel to create a new profile. (Use search or the Classic or small icon view to find it).
  2. Click Show Profiles
  3. Show profiles

  4. Click Add.
  5. Add a new profile

  6. Type a name for your profile.
  7. Outlook 2007 and up support “AutoDiscovery”. This will set up your email account automatically, provided your ISP supports it. If you aren’t sure, try it. Enter your name, email address and password and Outlook will try to set up the profile. Most major ISPs do support auto setup.
  8. auto account setup or manually configure profile

  9. After the auto account setup completes, click Manually configure account settings to use an existing pst file for your new mail, to set alternate ports or outgoing server authentication.
  10. If auto account setup fails or if you know your ISP doesn’t support it, check the option to create the profile manually. You’ll need to enter your account information, account type, and email server names. If you are unsure, check your ISP’s support site.
  11. After the account information is entered, press the Test Account button. If it fails, correct the problem and try again.
  12. While you can click Next and exit the wizard after entering the account information, many ISPs require authentication to send outgoing email, so you’ll want to click More Settings.
  13. More Settings dialog allows you to set a reply to address, configure outgoing server authentication, and connection information. The Advanced tab is used to set custom server ports, time outs, and whether to leave mail on the server.
  14. When you are finished, you can either close the Profiles dialog then double click on the Outlook icon to run Outlook, or add another personal folder (or more accounts) to the profile.

Using an existing Personal folders (*.pst)

If you need to set up Microsoft Outlook to use another personal folder (*.pst) do so before you open the profile in Outlook.

  1. control panel, Mail dialogWhen you are in the Mail dialog, select the profile and click Properties.
  2. You can choose either Email Accounts or Data files, both open the same dialog but to different tabs.
  3. Click Add on the Data tab.
  4. Select the type of PST you are adding. If you aren’t sure, choose the Outlook data type.
  5. Select the PST you want to add.
  6. Select the PST and set it as Default.
  7. Finish the wizard and close the Mail dialog.

Now you are ready to start Outlook.

While this tutorial was recorded using Outlook 2007, the steps are similar for all versions.

Create a new profile in Outlook 2010 Video Tutorial

This video tutorial shows how to remove a corrupt profile and create a new profile, using Windows 7 and Outlook 2010. The steps are identical for Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2013. On Windows 8, search for Mail in the Control panel.

If your profile is not corrupt, you do not need to delete it; you can have more than one profile in Outlook.

Outlook 2007 new profile tutorial

More Information

In the video, drag the slider to jump to the following segments:

  • More Settings Dialog – Leave mail on server segment begins at 0:49
  • How to add a PST to the profile segment begins at 1:15.
  • Profile Selector – How to choose which profile segment begins at 1:53.

If you are told to make a new profile because your profile is corrupt, do not copy an existing profile. Make a new one totally “from scratch” as described above.

About Diane Poremsky

Diane Poremsky
A Microsoft Outlook Most Valuable Professional (MVP) since 1999, Diane is the author of several books, including Outlook 2013 Absolute Beginners Book. She also created video training CDs and online training classes for Microsoft Outlook. You can find her helping people online in Outlook Forums as well as in the Microsoft Answers and TechNet forums.

Please post long or more complicated questions at Outlook forums by

27 responses to “How to Create a New Profile”

  1. garrick youngberg

    very nice... but the addresses still don't show up and the button is still grayed no matter how many times I add or delete the mail account...

  2. Bill Reese

    I recently downloaded backup files from Outlook 2003 from a external disk. My new computer has Outlook 2010.
    I have configured the Profile. I still get the error message 0x8004010F after using the Send Receive button.
    The emails do not download from ATT to Outlook.

    1. Diane Poremsky

      The problem could be ATT. Does it work on another computer? If you log into the account online then try it in outlook does it work? (network password dialog details problems with AT&T)

  3. Lori

    Okay, creating a new profile worked and I can send and recieve. Now I want to import my Outlook 2007 pst files. Is there something I need to do to make sure the 2007 pst files will be compatible with 2010. Should I use the import function from 2010 or try to use the mail profile dialouge to browse to the external drive where the pst files are located?

    1. Diane Poremsky

      The 2007 pst files are 100% compatible with Outlook 2010. Either copy the pst files to the local drive or use import - the risk of corruption is higher if you try to use pst files on a network or external drive.

      Whether you choose to import or open the pst in Outlook directly is up to you. We usually recommend opening the pst directly as the default date file but that works best if you do it when you create the profile. Making the switch later can sometimes corrupt the profile. The big thing is that importing will not include custom views, custom forms, rules, and a few other things - but the majority of users do not use more than rules. If you only want the mail, calendar, contacts etc, Import is fine.

  4. Bonnie

    Thank you for the video tutorial. I can read and read and read some more, but being able to watch step by step and stop, back up and review is my best learning mode. I have been working on this for two weeks and finally have my contacts available. You will be my go-to-person for troubleshooting Outlook.

  5. Hemant

    Thanks Diane!!

  6. John

    why can't Microsoft with all those geeks figure out how to make the systems compatible. outlook 2010 will not allow update of new contacts. shows in contacts but not in address book. In Windows 7 was not a problem???

    1. Diane Poremsky

      What type of email account do you have? Outlook 2010 should update contacts.

      If you have Contacts in the Contacts folder but they are not accessible when you click on the To button, see Missing Contacts

  7. Steven Rosen

    I am having the same problem. Can any one help?

    1. Diane Poremsky

      Are the contacts in your contacts folders but not in your address book when you click the To button? See Missing Contacts

      What type of email account do you use?

  8. Noel Lackey

    I installed Outlook 2010 on Windows 7 home, when I try to add an email account to it nothing happens when I click add an account, I go to control panel ,click on the profile and click properties, a dialog box opens and the top option is to set up an email account and directories, I click on this button and nothing happens, what do I do now?

    1. Diane Poremsky

      No error messages, just nothing? What type of email account do you use?
      You could try renaming the Windows Messaging Subsystem registry key but I'm not sure if it will fix your problem - the symptoms are a little different. But you can try it and if it doesn't help, rename the key back to restore it.

  9. Noel Lackey

    No message at all, I just keep clicking on the dialog box and nothing happens, I use Hotmail as my email account. I have,nt a clue how to even start renaming a registry key.

  10. Dennis

    Hi Diane,

    Quick question. I needed to migrate to a new profile and bring in my old PST. No problem, that was easy. Is there an easy way to bring in my email accounts? There are about 10 of them and I hate to have to set them all up again.

    Please let me know, thanks! Great site :)


    1. Diane Poremsky

      No, not really. The accounts are stored in your registry and while you can export the profile key, it contains hard coded links to files on your computer, which ends up corrupting the profile.

    2. Dennis

      Ok, thanks for the help!

  11. Scott

    Thanks a million for the help, it works great now..

  12. Heidi

    The password box keep on poping up. And I can not receive emails ?

    1. Diane Poremsky

      What type of email account? Do you access the account using other computers?
      See for possible causes.

  13. Chris Thornton

    Hi Diane,

    You have great help here. Thank you very much. I have a user who is using Outlook 2010 as an IMAP client. I set this up, but he has a number of contacts he exported from a previous client to a .csv file. I would like to import them but the import function is not available. I suspect I need to create a new .pst file (local) but am not sure and don't want to mess up this client. Can you help?


    1. Diane Poremsky

      The Import/Export wizard is under File, Open. The wizard is also accessible in File, Options, Advanced as Export (it opens the import/export wizard).

  14. Chris


    I was able to import them. For some reason it wasn't understanding I wanted to import them into the Outlook Data (local) file. Once we got that clear, they came in just fine.

    Thanks again for your great site and all your past help!


  15. vikas vijay

    In my outlook I am able to received the mails but I am not able to send mails in outlook 2010
    what is the issue

    1. Diane Poremsky

      Any error messages? In File, Account Settings, double click on the account then More Settings and then Advanced tab - what port # are you using?

  16. K.P.

    Problems coverting .pst ansi files to Unicode in outlook 2010. Created new Unicode data file and it appeared in the mail folder list as it should. Some default files did not automatically appear - such as inbox, outbox and sent so I added new folders for each and transferred emails over to new inbox named New inbox, and subfolders. Did same for sent emails. The ansi pst file is still the default data file in my mail folder list. New mail will see go there. I cannot figure out how to set up a new folders for calendar, contacts, notes, journal in the newly created Unicode data file in my Outlook folder list. Tried adding new folders again, including calendar folder by clicking on the new unicode data file folder.and copying the calendar list to the new calendar file using the drop down menu that came up. Then a new email popped up with all the calendar items shown as attachment, and no longer in the old calendar! What happened? The folder names/icons for Calendar, contacts, journal and notes now have appeared under the old ansi data file (still the default mail folder). The original folders for contacts, calendar,etc. are still there as always in a separate bottom section of the folder list - these are still the ansi files one. I hope you can help! Thanks so much.

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