Fix Outlook PST Errors When Inbox Repair Tool (ScanPST.exe) Not Responding

admin | Modified: 2018-08-30T14:16:20+05:30 | How to, Outlook

Microsoft Outlook is one of the best email client because of its security and various other features that makes its stand all other email client. Outlook creates PST file to store emails, calendars, contacts, Journals, RSS feeds and other data items. But this Outlook data file is vulnerable to damage. There are various reasons that can corrupt PST file like sudden power shut down, virus infection etc. But, there is an advantage that Microsoft Outlook is equipped with a Scanpst.exe tool (inbox repair tool) which scans the entire PST data file to fix the problem. However, if scanpst.exe is not responding or not working, then it becomes a serious issue. Hence, in this post, we have covered how to fix Outlook PST errors when scanpst.exe is not responding or working properly.

What Leads to Corruption in Outlook Data File (.pst)?

There are multiple factors that may leads to corruption in PST file. Some of them are as follows:

  • When the file size exceeds beyond the limit which overloads and lowers the efficiency of PST.
  • Improper method of shutting down or frequent power failures may leads to not saving the data properly. It is also one of the reason behind file corruption.
  • Virus attacks or other malicious software make PST file totally inaccessible.
  • It can be corrupted when the firewall and anti-virus are inadequately fixed.
  • When the data storage device damage or crashes .pst files can be lost.
  • Corrupt or outdated Outlook installation can results in PST file corruption.

Based on what actually triggers corruption in .pst file, MS Outlook introduces its Inbuilt tool scanPST.exe.

When Inbox Repair Tool can be Used?

It is a free inbuilt utility that is recommended to fix Outlook errors at its initial stage. It is used to overcome issues related to minor corruptions like sending/receiving error when Outlook crashed or if import/ export process is completed successfully. This tool analyse and scans the PST file to fix the encountered problem. PST files contains structures like B-trees and reference counts. High-level structures includes messages, tasks, contacts, schedules. But the problem with scanpst.exe is that it deals only with low level objects. In addition to that, it will not deals with corruption and fixing issues related to high level objects. Sometimes Outlook inbox repair tool not responding or not working properly to fix PST errors.

Steps to Execute Scanpst.exe

  1. To begin with, exit the Outlook application and open the File Explorer by clicking Windows Key+E
  2. Browse the following path from the program files: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\root\Office16
  3. Note: If Outlook 2013 is used, ensure to use this path:C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15

  4. For older versions such as for Outlook 2010, change “Office15” in the path by “Office14” and “Office13” for Outlook 2007
  5. Now, find and double-click on the scanpst.exe file as shown below:
  6. Browse and locate the .pst file which needs to be repaired and click the Start button
  7. Now, click on the Start button, once the process gets completes it creates a backup and log file stating the information of the repair process.

Reasons Why Scanpst.exe Not Responding or Not Working

There are several reasons where Microsoft inbox repair tool fails completely and stops responding or working properly. As it completely depends on the complexity of the errors and the amount of data that is corrupted or damaged.

Oversized PST Data File: Whenever the PST file exceeds more the 2GB limit, it terminates the repair process. As MS Outlook supports 2GB file size in version lower than 2003. It has increased its size limit in the later versions.

Unable to Recover Highly Corrupted PST File: The Inbox Repair Tool is more focused to solve low structured issues. Being a free utility, it fails to fix high corrupted PST file which stops the scanpst.exe from working.

Unreadable Contents are Deleted: Whenever scanpst.exe is unable to read the content even after several attempts, the contents are deleted. It considers that the entire content is corrupted and hence the essential PST data files are deleted.

Error While Repairing the PST File: The main drawback of this tool is that it recovers and focus only the file which is low- level corrupted. However, if the body section of the PST file is damaged, it only fixes the header part of the Outlook file instead of repairing the complete PST file.

Unable to Repair Protected PST File: This utility does not work if the Outlook PST files is protected with a password. In such cases, the pop-up will be shown that the Scanpst.exe is not responding.

Alternative to Fix Outlook PST Errors When Inbox Repair Tool (Scanpst.exe) is Not Responding

If the free utility i.e., Inbox Repair Tool does not help to fix up the errors and the corruption of file. Then, it is essential to switch to a autometed tool such as PST repair tool. This tool will help you to fix PST errors when Scanpst.exe not working in Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007, etc. It is a multi-functioned tool that provides features like recovering corrupted and permanently deleted data. It also supports recovery of files in bulk. It has a feature to save only the required data. It enables to preview the Outlook data before saving.


Scanpst.exe error occurs due to several reasons such as oversized PST file, improper installation of Inbox repair tool, PST file is being password protected, etc. Although, there is solution to solve this abrupt issue with the help of suggested utility. It is a perfect tool to recover the damaged data without any data loss. Hence, in this article an overview of PST, various issues why scanpst.exe does not responds has been discussed.