Merge PST files v/s Join PST files along with deduplication [in-depth explained]

How to merge pstThis article is meant for avid users of MS Outlook who use MS Outlook regularly in their day-to-day email use and constantly agonized by slow responsive performance of MS Outlook as their emails piles up over a long period of time. MS Outlook provides some useful features to handle these issues, but somehow fails to do so in an efficient manner.

So MS Outlook users usually end up in splitting their mails in a much organized way and keep their mails in a separate PST file based upon various criteria, like sender, type, yearly or may be even monthly manner. Over the long time period, such PST files grew in numbers and it’s quite troublesome for users to look multiple PST files multiple times to search for specific mails. Over a prolong period a process which was best suited in past, now becomes mere a nightmare for them and they start seeking viable option to effectively merge PST files instantly to cut down on time that involves thereby increase productivity.Of course productivity and smooth performance on MS Outlook count more which will pay them in future rather than struggling around with MS Outlook.

The whole process might look a bit trivial for an individual user but think as an administrator who is managing a staff of 100 or 200 users, using MS outlook regularly in corporate environment. Imagine a scenario when after some years every second user of internal network is asking for the solution of his similar individual problem related to number of small PST files.Now this becomes a very daunting task for administrator and a perfect piece of nightmare for him.Following information will provide a great help in handling such situations and overcome them.

Also Read: How to Split PST file? 

Today I will share a specific technique which will help you perform effective PST merge in an easy manner. Following process comprises of just three easy steps which are easy-to-understand. I will try to put in as much information as possible that will subsequently help you understand all the tricky portions. Process expressed here is applicable to all PST files [Unicode and ANSI] generated in MS outlook 2000, XP, 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2016 too. So this tutorial can become a relevant source of information for you as a future reference in long time that is worth a bookmark in your long list of important links.

First of all, you need to launch PST Merge application on your system. Before that, make sure:

You have to open 64-bit version if your MS Outlook is 64-bit, and use 32-bit version if your MS Outlook is 32-bit. Do not get confused with OS version as PST Merge should match with MS Outlook version, not with OS.

How to merge pst files step-3

You can select multiple PST files at a time. Once you select the files, you need to click Next to continue the process.

This is the main step of PST merging action. Here you need to select the merging option by which you want to merge your selected PST files.

How to merge pst files step-6

Read every word of this sentence very carefully

Merge option will merge various folders of similar name across multiple PST files which lie on same hierarchical level. A simple example will help you to understand it. Suppose you have taken a backup of your drive and kept it at safe place and keep adding more new files in that folder. And after few years, you look for some files and get confused, so you can sort out this confusion with merge operation.

Simply copy drive’s folders from backup and paste in current folder,so that now you have the exact same folders hierarchy which was earlier plus new root or sub folders also in the drive. This is known as merge operations.

The JOIN operation is somehow different as here you have multiple root folders generated to accommodate new child folders from separate PST files.

A simple image will help you in understanding the basic difference between those merge and join operations of PST files:

How to merge pst files


How to join pst files

Merge contacts is simple as it seems, it simply merges all the contacts exists in various PST files. This operation is quite handy when you have your contact lists regularly inflamed over a long period of time. Merging all contacts in one PST helps you keep all contacts at one place. It’s one of best tactics professional users in an organization are blessed with; correct me if I am wrong.

The Remove duplicate option is rather useful in merging PST files and merge contact operation then in join PST operation for obvious reasons. But it’s really an awesome feature which surpasses all other features. Although it’s not emphasized in the software, but as we know that companies like Microsoft has a habit to conceal its most useful and tricky features. This teeny tiny check button is my favourite amongst all and I regularly love to check it and let this beast running. Anyways, enough of boring humour and let’s get back to the topic.

The Exclude deleted items option is pretty straight forward too. You can check this to exclude deleted items folder in all selected PST files. Another obvious reason as deleted folder does not find path in generated PST file and bloats it again. I want my merged PST file be compact and solid, no extra mail items.

Few other settings which are not so complex are merged PST file path and its name. You can change it accordingly by checking your available disk space. A rule of thumb is to choose directly where free space is greater than all PST files combined[to be on safe side], so combining PST operation does not complaint in middle. And I am sure that you will not like that nasty red message in log Window as disk space is low: operation aborted. If you are really space crunched, then you can use following formula to calculate free space:

{[total PST file size] x 30}  / 100 = required free space

You can optionally choose to list or attach generated PST file in MS Outlook, so you need not to seek the generated PST file in your system and perform so many steps to get your PST file listed in MS Outlook.

Suggestion Type password in case you want your merged PST file to be password protected.

Now you have understand all the GUI portion, so now press process and you will notice a log window with various emails which are listing and processed by the PST Merge tool. Once the process is completed, it will pop a message saying that merging process is finished and you can check merged PST in MS Outlook.

How to merge pst files step-8

Keep log file in safe position in case you backtrack your email items processed. Full log contains an entry ID in it for source and target mails to back track things. If the log window does not display any error,then you are good to proceed and merging process is completed.

So you have learned following things in this tutorial:

  • Process to merge or join PST files;
  • Difference between merging and join operation;
  • Important to remove duplicate options;
  • Usefulness of “Exclude delete folder” option;
  • Calculate required free space in target folder;
  • Option to attach merged PST file in ms-outlook after process is completed;
  • Importance of log file.

Now as you have gained so much information out of this informative tutorial,so you might be looking forward to download link of this software. Instead of giving you direct link, I will ask you to search for “SysInfoTools PST Merge” software where you can find other information regarding this extraordinary software and utilize it properly.


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