A PST file is a file-access-driven method of storing messages. To elaborate, the computer system utilizes special file access commands provided by the operating system to read and write data to this vital file of Microsoft Outlook. If you store a Personal Folders file on a network, the possibilities of its getting corrupt and unusable are quite high. This happens because WAN/LAN uses network-access-driven methods. When the PST is stored on a network, Outlook uses the file commands to perform read/write operations, while the operating system would then send the commands on a network, since file is not located on the local machine. This increases the time for read/write operations and a PST file can become corrupt if connection fails. In PST corruption scenarios, you can rely on the inbuilt utility Inbox Repair Tool for fixing errors. However, if corruption is severe, you must switch to a professional pst repair software.
Consider a scenario, wherein, you have an archived PST file (related to a project). You have shared it over a network so that few of your colleagues can also access it, as and when required. One fine day, when you make an attempt to open it, you may receive the following error message:
"Unable to expand the folder. The set of folders could not be opened. Errors could have been detected in the file drive:\Documents and Settings\user\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook\Outlook.pst. Quit all mail-enabled applications, and then use the Inbox Repair Tool."
Due to the above error message, the PST file and its content become inaccessible.
A PST file over a network is never supported because in an enterprise environment they are not supposed to be long-term, continuous method of storing e-mails and other information. Corruption occurs too frequently when you try to access the PST file and network connection degrades or fails.
The following Outlook PST Repair steps are the best possible workarounds available:
In order to repair the erring PST file, you must consider employing the Inbox Repair Tool (Scanpst.exe).
If the error persists and Scanpst.exe fails to repair the file, then use the backup file as the primary PST file
In case backup file is not available, download a third-party Repair PST File software.
On the Internet, you will find several applications which promise to repair damaged PST files but do not just select and use any. Be wise, and opt for an easy-to-use yet efficient application i.e. Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair. This software repairs damaged PST files and recovers all its elements including e-mails, calendar items, journals, appointments etc. This Outlook PST Repair application supports MS Outlook 2010, 2007, 2003, 2002 and 2000 versions.
Do not store PST files on network!