Changing the Default Location for .OST and .PST Files

By default, Outlook places each Offline Folders (.ost) file and Personal Folders (.pst) file that it creates in the %userprofile%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook folder. This setting allows you to change the default behavior and store the files in any folder.

Open your registry and find the appropriate key below.

  • Outlook 2010 – [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook]
  • Outlook 2007 – [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook]
  • Outlook 2003 – [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook]
  • Outlook XP – [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\10.0\Outlook]
  • Outlook 2000 – [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\9.0\Outlook]
  • Create a new REG_EXPAND_SZ (Expandable String) value called ‘ForcePSTPath’ and set it to equal the full path of the required personal folder directory (e.g. “C:\Mailbox”).

    Restart Outlook for the change to take effect.

    Note: This is a expandable string value so you can use environment variables, such as %userprofile%, to specify the path. When the value does not exist the default value of “%userprofile%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook” is used.

    Registry Settings
    User Key: [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook]
    Value Name: ForcePSTPath
    Data Type: REG_EXPAND_SZ (Expanded String Value)
    Value Data: Full path to personal folder directory (Ex: D:\PSTs)
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