The keys to keeping the size of your folders manageable are to
- Periodically empty the Deleted Items folder
- Archive or delete from Sent Items
- Remove attachments from sent messages, assuming that the attached files are stored elsewhere on your system
- Use one of the third-party tools listed here to compress attachments that you want to keep in your folders
- If you are using Personal Folders, periodically compact them to recover space left behind by deleted items.
This page lists tools that can help users and administrators manage Outlook items by archiving items, removing attachments, repairing .pst and .ost files, renaming special folders, calculating folder size, backing up Outlook data.
The More Information section includes links to additional types of tools that may be useful for housekeeping.
Housekeeping utilities for Microsoft Outlook end-users can be found here.
Tools in the Spotlight
CodeTwo Exchange Rules Pro goes beyond standard transport rules on Microsoft Exchange 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010 or 2007 and lets you fully control mail flow, filter messages as well as add signatures and branding to your business emails. It gives you everything Exchange offers plus a lot of advanced features Exchange is missing, which admins consider a must-have in their daily work. Quickly create email forwarding rules for groups, set up auto-responders, filter or block incoming and outgoing messages, control email contents, rewrite sender's addresses, tag messages, add signatures and disclaimers, and more.
DataNumen Exchange Recovery repairs and recovers corrupted Microsoft Exchange offline storage (.ost) files. Exchange Recovery can scan orphaned OST files and recover mail messages and other items, including folders, posts, appointments, meeting requests, contacts, distribution lists, tasks, journals and notes. The recovered items are saved in PST format readable by Outlook, Other important features: recover attachments and deleted items, recover oversized 2GB OST files, support to convert OST files into PST files.
Archive Attender is an automated email archiving tool that moves essential data out of Exchange mailboxes and into a secure, external storage device. Using Archive Attender, administrators also have the ability to control and grant access rights to users. No additional hardware or client installations are required.
Metalogix Archive Manager for Exchange is email archiving software that simplifies and speeds up the process of archiving and retrieving email allowing them to be recovered with a few simple clicks. Single Instance Storage (SIS) removes duplicates, stores the original email and its attachments onto a cheaper storage unit and leaves an optional link on Exchange. It reduces email storage costs by up to 80% and shrinks backup and recovery times by 50%. FREE trial available.
Fast, disk-based backup of your production Exchange Server 2013/2010/2007/2003 without taking it offline. Complete computer backup including Active Directory, SQL and all other files using incremental/block-delta backup to reduce backup time. Restores as fast as 1.2GB/minute. Roll-back entire Exchange Mailbox Stores to previous points-in-time. Optional Exchange Message Restore Addon (2010/2007/2003) restores individual email messages in minutes without requiring a shutdown or interrupting the normal activity of your running Exchange Server.
An electronic discovery tool specifically designed to perform dynamic keyword searches in Exchange mailboxes, PST files and common file storage areas. Discovery Attender can automatically execute scans of message subject, body and attachments through customizable search criteria. Content searches are transparent to end-users and can be targeted to specific groups or users. Once critical information is located, it can be moved or copied to a secure location.
EEAttachments can export and process your attachments of your Exchange-Mailboxes. It is e.g. helpful to process PDF invoices. It takes usage of the EWS and can be installed directly on the Exchange or on a client. You can make Connections to one or more user mailboxes.
Converts data from a corrupted Exchange 5.5 or 2000 mail database into Personal Folders .pst files.
GFI MailArchiver is an email archiving and management solution that is easy to install and requires minimal administrative effort. It helps businesses reduce their dependency on PST files and meet their legal and regulatory obligations. All emails are stored in a central location that is easily accessible. It ships at a highly competitive price and is a popular email archiving software for small to medium-sized enterprises.
Anti-spam, disclaimers (with variables), archiving Internet mail, Internet mail usage reports. Includes a POP downloader and personalized server-based autoreplies that can include attachments and tracking numbers. Can archive to an ODBC database. Current version includes Overall improved anti-spam technology, an additional anti-spam engine called SpamRazer along with improved performance and a real-time dashboard. GFI MailEssentials now supports GFI Directory, enabling administrators to manage users just like they would with Active Directory when installed in a DMZ.
Migrate7 captures up to 10,000 Windows settings and injects them automatically into any modern version of Windows or Office. Migrate7 migrates thousands of settings in Microsoft Office, including cross-version from Office 2003, 2007, 2010, and 2013, including Outlook settings and PST hookups. Free for very small sites (5 users).
Ontrack PowerControls provides IT administrators the ability to search, collect, restore, and export data from Microsoft Exchange and Office 365 environments. Ontrack PowerControls addresses the legal and technical complexities associated with forensic collections. Ontrack PowerControls works directly with your backups and allows you to extract and restore only the items that you need, providing an easier process than maintaining a recovery server.
Perform brick-level restores from regular Exchange backups. You can search for what you want to restore by mailbox, message content, and types of items.
Sharepoint Upload is a command line freeware tool (with .NET source) that can extract e-mails from PST, Public Folders, and Exchange Mailboxes and place on a file system in MSG format (using Redemption). The extracted files are compatible to SharePoint naming conventions.
In Office 365 usual requirement is that a shared mailbox keeps a copy of emails sent from the mailbox by all members of the mailbox in its own Sent Items folder. After enabling this feature a user faces the following inconvenience: a message sent from a shared mailbox is still present in the Sent items folder of the user mailbox. UniSent Flow moves a message sent from a shared mailbox to user's Deleted items folder. The product is a Power Automate (former MS Flow) template.
- Compression Tools -- By compressing attachments, these can reduce the storage space used by Outlook items.
- Search Tools -- These tools provide faster, indexed searching.
- Configuration and Maintenance Issues
- To repair a damaged Outlook PST file
- Overview of Archive and of AutoArchive in Outlook 2003
- OL98: How to Remove or Replace Folder Size Button in Folder Properties
- OL2002 How to Remove or Replace Folder Size Button in Folder Properties
- OL2000 An Overview of Archive and AutoArchive
- Incorporating Archiving into Your Exchange 2000 Migration Strategy -- vendor white paper on using archiving as part of a migration strategy
- Change Outlook Folder AutoArchive settings -- CDO script for changing AutoArchive settings on individual folders
- Attachment Archiving to a File Server Script -- Script to run on Exchange 2000 Server to archive mailbox item attachments as system files and replace them in the original items with a text link to the archived file
- Outlook Mailbox Maintenance Plan