Problem outlook express can’t start

Before I begin this post, first of all don’t use outlook express for your daily works simply because outlook express is not reliable. Ms Outlook is a much better pop3 and imap email client, or for enterprise try lotus notes with lotus domino. Don’t use outlook express.

So many times that users with outlook express loose their emails, so I have to recover their emails. If they got lucky, I can recover their emails. If they not, the emails is lost.

One user came to me because her outlook express can’t start. I tried to start it and wait for 1 hour, nothing happen. Form the task manager I can see that outlook express is working because the process use almost 100% of cpu resource.

The Outlook express simply can’t start. Usually when this kind of problem happen, I will boot up to safe mode and run outlook express. Most of the time that will solved the problem. But not this one. I already tried to boot to safe mode, run outlook express and wait for more then another 1 hours and nothing happen.

So I tried another way.

I create another identity in outlook express, and try to import messages from the original store folder. First, it start to import the messages but then it stop.

Curious, I start again. And again it stop.

So, I tried again, but now I import one folder at a time. One folder imported, another folder imported, and it stop when I tried to import the inbox folder.

Curious, I did it again and it gave me the same result.

So, the conclusion is the problem caused by the corrupted inbox folder. I moved the inbox folder to another folder then start outlook express, and it started fine. Outlook express will created a new inbox folder.

All I have to do next is to recover the inbox folder into many eml files, then copied them back to the new inbox folder. Solved.

So, I just wasted my full day of work just to fix one unreliable outlook express email client.


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