Registry Home > Software > Microsoft Office > Outlook

Changing the Default Location for .OST and .PST Files (All Windows) New

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.

This tweak can be easily applied using WinGuides Tweak Manager.
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Open your registry and find the appropriate key below.

  • 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 Editor Example
    |NameTypeData|
    |(Default)REG_SZ(value not set)|
    |ForcePSTPathREG_EXPAND_SZ"C:\Mailbox"|
    -
    |HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook|
    -
    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

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    Disclaimer: Modifying the registry can cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. We cannot guarantee that problems resulting from modifications to the registry can be solved. Use the information provided at your own risk.

  • Last modified: February 12, 2007