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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    PST folder size (Outlook 2003)

    When I look at the size of my PST file in Windows Explorer it shows 310 MB. If look at the folder size by right clicking on Personal Folders in Outlook it shows 250 MB. I have compressed the file. Why is there this difference. (I have converted to the new Unicode data file.)

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: PST folder size (Outlook 2003)

    I don't absolutely know, but you will find that:

    1. Compression isn't perfect. You may obtain better compression by running scanpst.exe - the "Inbox Repair Tool" - on the PST. Another tedious way to shrink the PST it is to create a new temporary PST and move everything to it, compress the old empty one, then move all the content back. The rebuilt PST will be smaller - it's a bit like defragging a hard drive.
    2. The Folder Properties information summarizes all the stored user items, and I do not believe it includes the special hidden items such as standard and custom View definitions, Search Folders, and other PST folder administrative "overhead".
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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  3. #3
    5 Star Lounger
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    Re: PST folder size (Outlook 2003)

    I run ScanPst at least once a month. I just ran it again (it found errors, which is usually the case). After the repair my PST file is 500 KB larger Windows Explorer <img src=/S/confused.gif border=0 alt=confused width=15 height=20> A week ago I changed the auto archive setting on my Deleted Items folder from 6 months to 3 months, permanently deleted some very large mail, and archived everything. This reduced the size of the PST file shown by right clicking Personal Folders, but made little difference in the size of the PST file in Windows Explorer. I also Compacted from Personal Folders. The "compact" ran for about a second and the announced "Complete". This used to take some time - perhaps as long as 30 seconds to a minute. Maybe ScanPst does the same thing and there was nothing to compact.

    Thanks for your suggestion of tedious way. That sounds like too much effort and risk. I find the PST file a mysterious fellow.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: PST folder size (Outlook 2003)

    It has always been like this, in previous versions too. A .pst file contains a lot of overhead, only some of which is removed by compacting it. As long as the file doesn't get overly big, I wouldn't worry about it.

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