Archiving removes emails from your mailbox and puts them in a separate .pst file. This can help free up mailbox space and help you keep on top of your email history.

Archiving is different to exporting emails, which creates a backup copy of your messages but doesn't move them out of your mailbox.

Before you archive emails

For personal UQ email:

  • .pst files should not be stored in the cloud, e.g. OneDrive. They can be stored on your personal network drive, an external hard drive, or locally on your computer.
  • Backups of your personal UQ account emails are your responsibility. ITS can only recommend that you make copies of the .pst file for added security.

For a shared/hosted mailbox:

  • .pst files should be stored on the shared network drive (nas02).
  • Emails should not be added or modified in existing .pst files of shared mailboxes.

How to archive emails

Step 1: Turn off cached exchange mode

Turning off cached exchange mode will allow Outlook to access all of your emails for archiving, instead of the last 12 months (by default).

  1. Open Outlook.
  2. Go to ‘File’ > ‘Account Settings’ > ‘Account Settings…’
  3. Select the email address you want to archive, then click ‘Change…’
  4. Untick ‘Use Cached Exchange Mode to download email to an Outlook data file’.
  5. Click ‘Next’, then ‘Done’.
  6. Close and reopen Outlook.

Step 2: Archive emails

  1. In Outlook, go to ‘File’ and select ‘Info’ > ‘Tools’ > ‘Clean up old items’.
  2. Select the ‘Archive this folder and all subfolders’ option and choose your inbox from the list. You can also choose a specific folder if you only want to archive emails in that folder.
  3. Next to ‘Archive items older than’, enter a date. All emails created before this date will be archived.
  4. Click ‘Browse’ to save the .pst file to a location based on the type of account:
    • Personal UQ account - on your network drive, an external drive or computer.
    • Shared mailbox - on the shared network drive (nas02).
  5. Enter a file name and click ‘OK’ to save.

You will see an 'Archiving' status at the bottom of the Outlook window.

Outlook status bar showing archiving in progress.

When archiving is complete, the status will disappear.

Step 3: Turn cached exchange mode back on

Follow the instructions in Step 1, but this time:

  • Tick ‘Use Cached Exchange Mode to download email to an Outlook data file’.
  • To optimise performance on Outlook, set 'Download email for the past' to 1 year.

Step 4: Open archived emails

To open an Outlook data file (.pst):

  1. Copy the .pst file you want to open to a location on your computer's hard drive, e.g. C:\Temp\Outlook Files
  2. Open Outlook.
  3. Go to' File' and select 'Open & Export' > 'Open Outlook Data File'.
  4. Locate the Outlook Data file (.pst file) on your computer and click 'Open'.
  5. Click on your inbox or each folder to see its contents and choose what messages you want to open.

Once you have finished viewing archived emails, right click on the Outlook Data File in the folder pane and select 'Close Outlook Data File' from the menu. This will prevent any accidental corruption of the file if Outlook crashes.

If you want to move archived emails into your current inbox, you will have to import them.

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