Split PST File into Multiple Parts – Try Few Easy Manual Tricks

split pst fileDo you realize that a large PST file can lead serious issues? It can affect Outlook performance, Outlook client starts hanging or crash most of the time. In any case, the most exceedingly awful thing an Outlook user can ever confront is corruption. In the event that you have a large PST file, it gets to be inclined to corruption. Due to this, you may lose all emails and other mailbox data. You can split PST file to overcome this situation.

Outlook PST File Limitation

Microsoft Outlook stores all your email messages and other mailbox items in an Outlook data file, which is called PST or Personal Storage Table. There are two types of PST files used by MS Outlook: ANSI and Unicode. ANSI PST is used in MS Outlook 2002 and its earlier versions. ANSI is the default file format of these Outlook versions and has a size limit of 2 GB, consequently, it can’t store more than 2 GB of mailbox data. While Unicode PST file is used in Outlook 2003 and later versions. It’s the default file format of these Outlook versions, and it provides storage space of up to 20 GB to 50 GB.

ANSI PST file size limitation

If an ANSI PST file reaches its maximum size or crosses it, i.e. 2 GB, it becomes prone to corruption as a result. The chances for corruption in a Unicode PST file are low because of its maximum size limitation, i.e. 20 GB to 50 GB. But sometimes corruption can still take place in Unicode PST files. Corruption in PST file can cause you severe pain as you may lose your crucial emails forever. Under this critical situation, you can try to split PST file into multiple smaller parts. How is it useful?

For example: if you’re having a PST file of 2 GB, you can split it into four parts, 500 MB each. As a result, you’ll get four PST files which are handy in size. If PST files are handy and small in size, you can avoid corruption with ease.

split PST file into multiple parts

Useful Information for Outlook Users

There are a couple of things you can try here if you’re having an oversized PST file. Outlook provides you a built-in Compact feature so that you can compress PST file size. Read this blog post Safely Compact PST File using Outlook Compact Feature. Also, you can remove Outlook duplicates from the PST files in order to get more free space. A duplicate item takes exactly same space in the PST file as the original one does. So you can understand now how harmful duplicate items are. If you want to remove Outlook duplicates from PST files, read this blog post – Smart Way to Remove Outlook Duplicates with Ease.

Sometimes it’s found that PST file is corrupt. In such situation, neither you can split PST file nor can you compress its size because you can’t open it. First of all, you must repair PST file before you can try anything here. Click here to know Repair PST File by using Inbox Repair Tool (scanpst.exe).

How to split PST file into multiple files?

Microsoft Outlook doesn’t give any tool, utility or built-in feature to break or split PST file into numerous parts. Yet at the same time, this thing is possible by using either Archive or Import & Export (in MS Outlook 2010) feature of MS Outlook. Additionally, MS Outlook provides Move to Folder feature to move all the mailbox content starting with one file then onto the next. However, these features don’t split PST file into multiple parts, yet can move mailbox content starting with one PST file then onto the next.

For an example, an Outlook PST file contains a thousand email messages. You need to split PST file into multiple parts. You can move a hundred email messages into another PST file. This will create a new PST file containing your email messages. You can execute the same action with the remaining email messages by simply moving a hundred email messages to other PST files one by one. Finally, you have ten PST files containing 100 email messages each. This function of moving PST files’ items into another PST file is exceptionally safe and effective. But it requires excellent knowledge with Outlook client. Therefore, non-technical or novice users can face difficulties while performing the above procedure. I’ve shown a step-by-step tutorial below to move mailbox folders from one PST file to another.

Trick #1 – Split PST File 

Move PST file items by using Archive feature of Outlook

Note: If you’re looking for “how to archive Outlook folder”, you should use this trick.

Step 1: First of all, launch Microsoft Outlook program.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Select your PST file from which you want to move items to a new PST file.

Step 2: Now click File tab > Info.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Click Cleanup Tools.

Step 3: A list will be scrolled down.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Select Archive….

Step 4: The Archive dialog box will appear.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

The “Archive this folder and all subfolders” box is checked by default. If it’s not, then check it.

Now select any folder from the list that you want to move. For example Inbox.

Step 6: An option Archive items older than is shown there.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Select a date from the calendar.

Step 7: Now click Browse.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Select a location and give any name to this new PST file. It would archive.pst by default.

Step 8: You can see the selected location with the defined file name in the edit box.

split PST using Outlook's Archive feature

Finally, click OK to start the actual process.

This will create a new PST file as a result. You can check this file in MS Outlook.

Trick #2 – Split PST file

Move PST file items by using Import & Export feature of Outlook

Step 1: First of all, launch Microsoft Outlook on your system.

MS Outlook 2010

Step 2: Now create a new Outlook data file, aka PST.

how to create a new PST in Outlook-2010 (1)

Click File tab, More Items > Outlook Data File…click File tab.

Step 3: The Create or Open Outlook Data File window will appear.

how to create a new PST in Outlook-2010 (2)

Browse a location and give a name to this new Outlook data file. Click OK.

A new Outlook data file will be created and listed on your Outlook.

Step 4: Click File tab > Open > Import.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Step 5: The Import and Export Wizard will appear.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature
Choose Export to a file from the list and click Next.

Step 8: Choose Outlook Data File (.pst) and click Next.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Step 9: Now select the folder to export from.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Expand the folder and select the item. Click Next.

Step 10: Now click Browse to select the file in which you want to export.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Step 11: The Open Outlook Data Files window will open.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Select the file into which you want to export. Click OK to confirm your action.

Step 12: You can see the selected Outlook data file in the edit box.

split PST using Outlook's Export feature

Finally, click Finish button to start the actual process.

A new window Create Outlook Data File will pop up. You may apply password and protect the file. Or if you don’t want this, simply click Cancel.

This will create a new PST file as a result. You can check this file in MS Outlook.

Trick #3 – Split PST File 

Move PST file items by using Move to Folders feature of Outlook

Step 1: First of all, launch Microsoft Outlook on your system.

MS Outlook 2010

Step 2: On the Home tab, click New Items. Then point to More Items > Outlook Data File.

how to create a new PST in Outlook-2010 (1)

Step 3: The Create or Open Outlook Data File window will appear.

how to create a new PST in Outlook-2010 (2)

Give a name to this new Outlook data file. Click OK.

Step 4: The new Outlook data file will be listed.

split PST using Outlook's Copy feature

Expand the Outlook data file from which you want to move/copy the mailbox items. Select any particular mailbox folder at a time.

Step 5: Now click the Move tab.

split PST using Outlook's Copy feature

Click Copy to Folder….

Step 6: The Copy Items dialog box will appear.

split PST using Outlook's Copy feature

Select the new Outlook data file into which you want to copy the mailbox folder. Finally, click OK.

It’ll take a few seconds to complete the process successfully. As a result, you’ll get a new PST file containing the mailbox folder you copied earlier.

Note: You can’t use any of the above manual tricks if PST file is corrupt. The reason is quite obvious, you can’t open a corrupt PST file. It’s just impossible to move or export anything from a file which you can’t open or access. Luckily, Microsoft provides you scanpst.exe aka Inbox Repair tool to repair PST file. Also, you can try professional PST repair or recovery tool to repair PST file and to recover maximum possible data from it. You can compare the best solution in this post – Top Most PST Repair/Recovery Tools for Outlook Users

Common demerits of manual tricks

common-demeritsMost of the time, computer users seek for some free help to resolve their issues. We all want to save our money, it’s natural. If I can do something for free, i.e. with no cost, why would I spend my money on paid solutions? I’ve shown above three different manual tricks which can help Outlook users split PST file into multiple parts. Though every single trick there is effective, they have a couple of demerits. Let’s find out what there are:

  • It’s good if you’re having a low amount of mailbox content in your PST files. You can move or export (whatever you want) them to new PST files without taking much time. But if the mailbox is really large containing thousands of email messages and other mailbox items, it’ll definitely consume enough time. Sometimes it may take few hours to complete splitting PST file process. Isn’t it irritating?
  • The manual tricks might be challenging for novice Outlook users, although the steps are shown above. If you’ve just started using Outlook client, you might not have that much knowledge. Even after going through the simple steps shown above, an Outlook user may find the task, i.e. splitting PST file, difficult to perform. Isn’t it irritating?

These are the two most common demerits which cause trouble for Outlook users. You don’t want to spend a lot of time in this task. Do you? Being a novice Outlook user, you find it challenging to perform the task. Don’t you? Stop scratching your head! There’s an award-winning solution for you. If you don’t want to use any such manual trick and you’re looking for an easy and quick way for splitting PST file, PST Split software best fits your needs.

Professional Solution to Split PST File

PST Split software is an excellent solution recommended by Outlook experts and professional users all around the world. Why is it better than the manual tricks? Let’s find out below:

  • Using manual trick for splitting PST file is a time-consuming task. But PST Splitter doesn’t take much time and instantly provides you the results.
  • Splitting PST file manually requires a sound Outlook knowledge. But PST Splitter doesn’t require any prior knowledge. It performs the entire operation all by itself. You just need to select the PST file and define the split option.
  • Though manual tricks are safe-to-use, they may cause unwanted changes to the original PST files. But PST Splitter is not like that. It’s safe and doesn’t cause any changes, alteration or damage. The original PST files remain untouched or intact.
  • Manual tricks don’t provide you different ways of splitting PST file what you get only in PST Split software. You can split PST file according to size, date and senders’ email IDs with ease.

Watch the online video tutorial below

18 Replies to “Split PST File into Multiple Parts – Try Few Easy Manual Tricks”

  1. This is an informative blog which tells you different ways to reduce the size of your large PST files. The most effective way to reduce the size of PST file is by splitting the PST file.

  2. Thank you natsem, very enlightening! Will this method also work for Outlook 2013 [32-bit]? What would you suggest to fix (“freshen up”) my 32Gb PST file? Before I start splitting my PST file, I want to make sure it’s not corrupt. I tried using scanpst.exe, and it hangs up my system after a couple of hours. I tried it several times, and I made sure that nothing was running in the background.

  3. Dear dcms61, if your .pst file is corrupted, you can’t use these methods for splitting the file. You have also checked SCANPST.EXE, but it didn’t work. Now you have only one option left, a third-party PST repair tool. Try SysInfoTools PST File Repair software and repair your .pst file. Once the file is repaired, you can easily use the above methods for splitting the file.
    I’m not sure whether the methods shown above also work for Outlook 2013 (32-bit) as I haven’t used 2013. But still I can suggest you to check them. Make sure you take backup of your .pst file before using any manual technique.
    Thank you.

  4. Hurrah! In the end I got a web site from where I know how to genuinely obtain useful data concerning my study and knowledge.
    Thanks!!!!

    1. No, it will not. The deleted email items will be automatically moved to “Deleted Items” folder. So you need to empty/clean it to remove all the email items permanently from the PST file. However if the PST file size does not get reduced, you need to do one more thing here. You can compact the PST file.

      You need to go to Data File Properties > click on Advanced tab > Compact Now button > OK.

  5. Hi there! Would you mind if I share your blog with my facebook group?

    There’s a lot of folks that I think would really enjoy your content.

    Please let me know.

    Thanks.

  6. Hi, just want to ask if simply moving the emails from folder to folder by the option in the right click button would do the trick in distributing the folder size?
    Thank you.

    1. Dear Mae, that might work (the trick you were talking about). You should try it once. But make sure you back up the PST file first and perform this trick with the duplicate copy of the PST file.

      Good luck.