Moving away from “Personal Folders” (PST Files) in Outlook

Moving away from PST files is a Win Win is because we need to do it from a technical side, but also as a user, you really don’t want to or need to use them anymore.

If you’ve only been working for FCPS for 3-4 years you may have never heard of PST files or Personal Folders. Back in the day, we had a limited about of storage space for emails and one’s email inbox could fill up quickly. Many staff members wanted to keep old emails and so the concept of “personal folders” was born. Basically a PST file PST Examplewas created in a user’s server folder and user accessed it through Outlook.

A user could drag an email from their Inbox down to their Personal Folders allowing them to keep the email and at the same time remove it from their Inbox, freeing up space. This processed worked OK for the time but doesn’t really fit with today’s “email everywhere” mentally. One problem was that the PST file was only accessible within FCPS (not webmail), and access to the file had to be manually setup on a user’s computer.

PST files can get quite large as more and more emails with attachments are moved to personal folders.The reason for the timing of this post is that we no longer have the space or necessary amount of time to backup PST files. 

Moving away from PST files is a Win Win is because we need to do it from a technical side, but also as a user, you really don’t want to or need to use them anymore.

With the move to Office365 everyone’s amount of email space is huge. So if you want to organize emails you want to keep, you can create folders under your Inbox the same way you used to with personal folders. Probably the biggest advantage to this is emails are then available in Outlook, in Webmail, and even on a mobile device.

Moving folder/emails from your personal folders to your inbox is a pretty easy process. In the example picture I have a folder called 2014-15. To move the folder, and all the email in it, I just need to drag it up to my inbox. Depending on how many emails are in the folder it could take a few minutes to move.

To see this process in real time check out the video below.

You may not have a PST file, but if you do it is important that you move any emails from them to your Inbox as soon as possible. If you have any problem let me or your District Tech know.

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