CCSU logo
Need Technical Support?

Contact the IT Help Desk:

Regular hours:
Monday - Thursday 8am - 8pm
Friday 8am - 5pm

Intersession hours:
Monday - Friday 8am - 5pm

(860) 832-1720
techsupport@ccsu.edu

IT Self-Help: Archiving Your Outlook Mail Folders

Printer icon Click here to print a printer-ready version of this page


Why should I archive my e-mail?
How do I determine my CCSU e-mail account's used space?
How do I archive my old e-mail?
How do I access my archived e-mail?
How do I back up my archived e-mail file(s)?


Why should I archive my e-mail?

Have you ever received an e-mail message stating that your Outlook mailbox was full, and you were unable to receive or send e-mail messages? Your CCSU Outlook mailbox is limited to approximately 500 megabytes. Once this limit is reached, mail cannot be sent or received until space is freed up. The best way to do this is by archiving your old e-mail. When you archive your e-mail, it is moved from the Microsoft Exchange Server to a file on your hard drive. This frees up space in your mailbox, but also gives you the ability to access all your old mail.

To understand e-mail archiving, you need to understand how your CCSU Outlook e-mail works. Your CCSU Outlook e-mail is stored on a Microsoft Exchange Server. To access your e-mail, you have to either be connected to the CCSU network, or go through the Microsoft Outlook Web Client. Because your e-mail is stored on a server, instead of on your personal computer, IT is able to ensure its safety by backing up the data daily. When you archive your e-mail, you remove it from the Microsoft Exchange Server and store it in another location (the default location is your personal computer's hard drive).

However, please keep in mind that once your mail is archived, and thus removed from the Microsoft Exchange Server, IT can no longer back up the data. If your personal computer crashes, or if your data is lost, IT cannot restore it. It is important that you back up this data yourself. Make it a habit to back up your data every time you archive your e-mail by copying the archive file into another stable information storage device, such as a portable hard drive or a USB flash drive. You can also burn a copy of the archive file into a CD, but please be aware that retrieval of the file back from a CD may make the file read-only and may create problems when opening it back in Outlook.

To learn how to back up your archive file(s), please read the last section on this page. For further assistance, call the IT Help Desk at (860) 832-1720, or 21720 from a campus phone.

Back to Top


How do I determine my CCSU e-mail account's used space?

  1. The following instructions apply to the full version of Outlook:
  2. Open Outlook and go to the "Tools" menu.
  3. Select "Mailbox Cleanup..."
  4. Click on the "View Mailbox Size..." button.
  5. The amount of storage used will be shown as "Total size (including subfolders)". This amount will be shown in kilobytes (1,000 kilobytes make 1 megabyte).

Back to Top


How do I archive my old e-mail?

  1. The following instructions apply to the full version of Outlook:
  2. Open Outlook and click on the "File" menu.
  3. Click on "Archive..."
  4. Verify that your Mailbox (should be showing at the top of the list of folders) is selected and that the "Archive this folder and all subfolders" option is also selected.
  5. Make sure to set the starting date that you want Outlook to archive your e-mail from.
  6. Make sure that the location you wish to store your archived e-mail appears in the "Archive file:" field. By default, the archive file will be placed in your C: drive, inside a series of folders within your account's profile (see below for more information about the actual location).
  7. Click OK. Outlook will copy the folder structure from your server mailbox onto your hard drive and move your old mail into these folders accordingly. Once these e-mails have been archived to your computer they will be purged from the mail server in order to free up space.

Back to Top


How do I access my archived e-mail?

  1. The following instructions apply to the full version of Outlook:
  2. Open Outlook.
  3. If an archive folder is in your folder list, expand it by clicking on the plus sign (+) in order to see its archived folders and e-mails. If there are no archive folders showing in your folder list go to step 3:
  4. Click on the "File" menu.
  5. Click on "Open"
  6. Click on "Outlook Data File..."
  7. If your archive file(s) are not showing in the window, you must then navigate to the proper location where the archive files have been stored. If you saved your archived e-mail to the default location, the progression of folders should read:
    • In Windows XP:
      Local Disk (C:) \ Documents and Settings \ "your BlueNet ID" \ Local Settings \ Application Data \ Microsoft \ Outlook \
    • In Windows Vista:
      Local Disk (C:) \ Users \ "your BlueNet ID" \ AppData \ Local \ Microsoft \ Outlook \
  8. Once you are in the correct folder, there should be a file called "archive" or "archive.pst". Click on it to select it.
  9. Click OK. The archive folder will then be loaded and will add itself to your folder list, giving you access to all archived folders and e-mails that were stored in it (see step # 2 for more information).

Back to Top


How do I back up my archived e-mail file(s)?

  1. Go to the location, browsing "My Computer" or using Windows Explorer, where the archive file has been placed. By default Outlook will place those files in the following location:
    • In Windows XP:
      Local Disk (C:) \ Documents and Settings \ "your BlueNet ID" \ Local Settings \ Application Data \ Microsoft \ Outlook \
    • In Windows Vista:
      Local Disk (C:) \ Users \ "your BlueNet ID" \ AppData \ Local \ Microsoft \ Outlook \
  2. Archived e-mail files use the file extension ".pst". However, you may not be able to see file extensions, depending on your Windows settings.
  3. Copy the file(s) to a reliable back-up media, such as an external hard drive or a USB flash drive. Remember that you can also burn the file(s) to a CD, but this may create problems when trying to retrieve the files from the CD and open them in Outlook because they may be set as "read-only" when burned into a CD.

Back to Top


© CENTRAL CONNECTICUT STATE UNIVERSITY