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Creating a new Archive pst-file and change the folder for AutoArchive to archive to

For the past year, I’ve been archiving to a pst-file which I called “archive-2015.pst” which is also located in a “2015” folder of my Documents folder. I’ve now finished archiving everything of 2015 and want to start my 2016 archive.

How can I create a new archive and configure Outlook to archive to the “archive-2016.pst” file in the future?

AutoArchive Settings buttonThis is another one of those questions which sound complicated at first but is actually really easy to do once you know how.

All you have to do is change the folder path and/or file name within the AutoArchive settings. The next time that you run AutoArchive, it will be done to this pst-file. If the pst-file doesn’t exist yet, it will be created automatically too.

  1. Open the AutoArchive Settings dialog.
    • Outlook 2007 and previous
      Tools-> Options…-> tab: Other-> button: AutoArchive…
    • Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016
      File-> section Options-> section Advanced-> button AutoArchive Settings…
  2. Adjust the pst-file name and/or folder path for: Move old items to
  3. Press OK until all dialogs are closed.

Change the folder path and/or file name to starting with a new archive pst-file.
Change the folder path and/or file name to start with a new archive pst-file.

Extra tips: Disconnecting and reconnecting the old archive

Archive.pst file buttonIf you don’t want to have your older archive file(s) connected to Outlook all the time, you can close it via the Data Files tab of your Account Settings dialog.

  1. Open the Data Files management tab.
    • Outlook 2007 and previous
      File-> Data File Management
    • Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016
      File-> Account Settings-> Account Settings…-> tab: Data Files
  2. Select the archive pst-file you wish to disconnect.
  3. Press the Remove button.
    • Note 1:
      This will only remove the connected pst-file from your Outlook mail profile, it will not delete the file from your disk.
    • Note 2:
      To actually release the file-lock on the pst-file, you’ll need to restart Outlook.
  4. Press OK until all dialogs are closed.

You can remove old archive pst-files from Outlook without actually deleting the data. (click on image to enlarge)
You can remove old archive pst-files from Outlook without actually deleting the data. (click on image to enlarge)

You can always reconnect a pst-file to Outlook again via;

  • Outlook 2007 and previous
    File-> Open-> Outlook Data File
  • Outlook 2010
    File-> Open-> Open Outlook Data File
  • Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016
    File-> Open & Export-> Open Outlook Data File

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