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Unveiling PST Document Corruption: Causes and Solutions

Your PST documents are corrupted, and you desire to view the data within them. Consequently, we will furnish you with the techniques that will aid you in resolving this issue, and we will also present the causes for your document corruption.

A PST document is an Outlook document format to stockpile your mailbox items such as emails, contacts, calendars, events, etc. on your local storage. It is also utilized to import and export your data in the program. This document is solely utilized in Windows Outlook as it is a proprietary document that utilizes a POP server account. A PST document is also utilized when you backup your Outlook data. Like any other document format, the PST document is also susceptible to corruption, which can impact your data as well.

Causes for PST Document Corruption

Before we proceed to the main topic of this, let’s examine the source of your PST document corruption.

  • In the PST document, you possess a substantial amount of data stored in the document.
  • You are mishandling the PST document.
  • The corruption issue can also stem from hardware or software errors.
  • Virus or malware attacks can also be the trigger for the problem.

There can also be other causes for this issue, but these are the prevalent ones. Now, let’s explore the methods to peruse the data from the corrupted documents.

Techniques to Inspect Corrupt PST Documents

For a corrupted PST document, you first need to tackle the corruption issues. To achieve this, we employ ScanPST.exe, which is a utility that rectifies the errors leading to corruption. Subsequently, you can scrutinize the content of the document effortlessly. However, if this fails, a professional approach will be beneficial. This approach will enable you to view data from corrupt PST documents without any hassle. Hence, there are two techniques to view the documents.

  • Resolve the issues with ScanPST.exe.
  • Employ the professional method to examine the corrupted documents.

Inspect Corrupt PST Documents with ScanPST.exe

ScanPST.exe is an in-built utility provided by Microsoft to mend corrupted PST documents. Here, we initially mend the PST documents, then open them in Outlook to read the data. It involves two steps: repairing the document and viewing the content.

Step 1: Mend Corrupted PST Documents using ScanPST.exe

The following steps will aid you in rectifying the corruption issue with PST documents.

  • Close your Outlook application and navigate to the location of ScanPST.exe.
  • Click on the Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool.
  • Navigate to your corrupted PST document and select the Start button.
  • Subsequently, the tool scans your documents for any issues.
  • Click on the repair button to resolve the issue.

Now, you can effortlessly read the data by opening it in Outlook. Thus, proceed to the next step.

Step 2: Read the Rectified document in Outlook

Once you have successfully addressed the corruption issue with the document, you can now easily inspect corrupt PST documents.

  • Open Outlook and navigate to the File option.
  • Click on the Open and Export option, then select the Import/Export option.
  • Browse the rectified document and import it into Outlook.
  • Click on the Inbox folder to view the data.

Limitations of the Manual Technique

The aforementioned method is simple and free to utilize to inspect data from corrupt PST documents. However, there are certain limitations associated with this technique.

  • ScanPST.exe solely resolves minor errors. Consequently, if your document is corrupted by major issues, then this method is inadequate.
  • The tool cannot handle multiple large PST documents.
  • Encrypted PST documents that exceed 2 GB cannot be recovered.

Due to these reasons, the manual technique is not a dependable solution in this scenario. Now, let’s explore another approach to peruse the corrupted documents.

A Professional Approach to Inspect Corrupt PST Documents

The manual technique is not an optimal way to view data from corrupt PST documents. Hence, we resort to a professional PST Viewer Tool offered by FreeViewer. The software facilitates you to read PST documents, from healthy to corrupt. It is available for free download and provides a user-friendly approach to read the data. Furthermore, there are numerous additional features you can avail of.

Features of Software

  • You can view complete PST file data, including emails, contacts, calendars, events, etc.
  • The tool enables you to view attachments and the attributes of the document.
  • You can preview the document in various modes, such as HEX, HTML, RTF, MIME, etc.
  • There is a scanning option to scan your corrupted documents before examining the data.
  • It is compatible with all Windows OS versions.

Steps to View Data from Corrupted PST Documents

  • Download and install the software.
  • Click on the Add File option. Open your corrupted PST document by clicking the browse button.
  • Select the Advanced scan option for corruption issues and click on the Add File button.
  • The tool will scan your documents and load the data from them.
  • Now, you can read the content of the document and preview it.
Unveiling PST Document Corruption: Causes and Solutions


Inspecting corrupt PST documents can be challenging, but in this article, we present two techniques that can aid you in viewing the documents. One of the methods utilizes ScanPST.exe to repair the corrupted documents, and subsequently, you can easily view them. However, this is not an optimal option, whereas the professional approach is preferable as it allows you to effortlessly view the data, regardless of whether you have a corrupt document or a healthy one.

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