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  1. #1
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    Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP, WinXP Pro)

    I have a brand new laptop computer. I just installed Office XP on it. When I tried to run Outlook, I got the message
    "Unable to open your default email folders. Could not open the item. Try again." When I click "OK" (the only choice), it then asks, "Would you like to open your default system folder instead?". If I click yes, it takes me to "My Computer", if I click no, Outlook closes and that it the end of it.
    This happens if I try to start from the .exe file in the MSOffice folder, or from the shortcut on the desktop, or from Start>All Programs.

    If I try to start it from the shortcut on left side of the Start menu, it says, "Cannot start Microsoft Outlook. Unable to display the selected folder or item. Could not open the item. Try again."

    This computer came with a trial version of Office 2003 on it, which I did not activate. I have since uninstalled Office 2003, Uninstalled Outlook XP, shut down and restarted, reinstalled Outlook XP. I also went to "Add/Remove Programs" and clicked to "repair" Office XP. Nothing works.

    I did not use Office 2003, but I did try to open Outlook before I uninstalled it, just to see what would happen. I also got an error message there - something about a DLL file it couldn't find. That message came up numerous times and I ultimately had to ctrl>alt>del to get out of Outlook and the error messages.

    Any suggestions?
    Thanks,
    -cynthia

  2. #2
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    Do you have an old Personal Folders (PST) file that contains mail or contacts you want to use with Outlook 2002? If not, you can create a new data file. I thought Outlook created one automatically, but maybe it is trying to use one left behind by Outlook 2003, which has an incompatible format.

    Try this: use Windows' Start button to get to Settings > Control Panel > Mail (if you have Windows XP, your start menu might be a bit different....). Under Data Files, you should be able to Add a new PST to get Outlook started. Does it work?

  3. #3
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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    Thank you. That seems to have worked. But it also required me to create a password for the pst files. If I clicked "cancel", it didn't create the file. (This MUST be new with XP - I've installed an reinstalled Outlook 98 and Outlook 2000 dozens of times! It always created the pst file on its own and i've never had to create a password.)

    Program seems to be open normally now. So I'll cross my fingers and proceed.

    Thanks again!
    -cynthia

  4. #4
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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    Hmmmm. It allowed me to set up my email account and to 'test settings' (which it says are all okay). But when I click "send/recieve" it says "Could not open the item. Try again"

    I'm going to poke around some more in that mail area you mentioned and see if it might let me set up anything else that Outlook might be able to recognize!
    -cynthia

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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    Well I slept on it all for a night. I'm feeling better - but apparently Outlook isn't <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    I can still open the program (at least we've made THAT much progress!) but Send/Receive still tells me "Could not open the item. Try again" (I tried F9 and got the same message).

    Additionally, I inspected the folders. I have two folders available when I open the program: "Personal Folders" and "Outlook Today [Personal Folders]. If I expand "Personal Folders", it contains a "Deleted Items" folder - but that's all. No "Inbox", "Outbox", "Drafts" or anything else. If I try to expand "Outlook Today [Personal Folders]" I get the message "Unable to display the folder. Microsoft Outlook could not access the specified folder location. Could not open the item. Try again."

    I tried going back to the Control Panel > Mail and removing it and then recreating it. That reversed the order of the two folders that show up, but the only other thing that changed was the "Outlook Today...." used to show one item in it - which was apparently my default Internet connection "GWI W Call Waiting.lnk" . That item no longer appears in the "Outlook Today....." folder. It merely displays that error message in the area where items would normally be displayed.

    Outlook Help says that an address book is created automatically, but there also is no address book that I can find (I get an error message when I try to access one - it says I have to create one).

    Could all this be from leftover stuff from Office 2003? If so is there any way to get rid of whatever is causing the problem? I notice that Office XP appears to be installed in a folder called "Office 10" and Outlook 2003 appeared (when it was still on the computer) to be installed in a folder called "Office 11". The "Office 11" folder is still there and is full of stuff (although the program icons have all disappeared). Should I delete it? (I guess they didn't do me any favors installing that "free trial" on here! I had this perfectly legal copy of the full OfficeXP Professional sitting in a box just waiting to be installed).

    For the record, initial inspection of the other Office programs indicates that they seem to operate normally (though I haven't done much more than open any of them).

    I do have a PST folder on my desktop computer at home and maybe the best bet would be to burn that onto a CD and move it onto this computer if it isn't too huge? But that probably wouldn't solve the Send/Receive issues.

    I did go online and noticed there is a big Service Packdownload for Office XP, but since I am currently on the road and sharing a dialup connection I did not download it. Might that solve the problem? (I remember that Outlook 97 was a useless program until one obtained a free upgrade to turn it into Outlook 98). I can't imagine that this upgrade is supposed to be this non-functional when so many businesses use this program at this point......

    Any suggestions what I should try next?
    -cynthia

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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    A few ideas:

    Outlook Today Refusing To Open
    Are you logged on to the machine with the same ID as the with which you created that PST file. It sounds like you may has a WIndows Operating System permissions issue. If necessary, try logging on with Administrator privileges. Track down the PST file in Windows Explorer (with Outlook closed down). Right-click, choose Properties|Security and make sure that your normal ID has permission to access the file.

    Office 11 Folder
    Rather than deleting this, try copying it to another location first and then deleting everything in the original folder. If things start going wrong, you can always move the contents back in again. If there is no change whatsoever after a few days, that may mean it would be safe to delete it all.

    Service Packs
    I think you are safe waiting until you have better than a dial-up for internet access.

    Hope That Helps
    Gre

  7. #7
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Can't Open Default Email Folders (Outlook XP,

    I suggest renaming the Office11 folder to Office2003, so you know what it is, and see if you get any new error messages. Apparently if two versions of Outlook are installed on the same computer they fight. If necessary, you can rename the folder back and formally uninstall Office 2003. (If you said you did this further up the thread, apologies for the bad memory).

    It sounds as though your default delivery point is the incompatible PST. To change this, try:

    Tools > E-mail Accounts... > * View or change bubble, click Next

    In the drop-down under "Deliver new e-mail to the following location:" see if you can choose the newly created Blank PST or, if that doesn't work, use the New Outlook Data File button. We'll wean Outlook 2002 off of the bad PST one way or other!

    Note: if you have a prior PST you want to use anyway, this would be the place to make it the boss, after copying it into a convenient location and making sure it's not still read-only from being on the CD.

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