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11/17/2017 2:33:24 PM

Outlook Express - Backing Up Your Data

Contents

Outlook Express is not Outlook

Microsoft Outlook Express (included with Windows XP) is NOT the same mail program as Microsoft Outlook, a component of Microsoft Office. The two programs do not share any data and the procedures for backing up the data are completely different.
Windows Live Mail replaces Outlook Express in newer versions of Windows.

See the following for information about backing up Microsoft Outlook data:
How to manage .pst files in Microsoft Outlook. Note: We do not use Microsoft Exchange, so in relation to our email system, you can ignore references to it.

How to back up email in Outlook Express

  1. Within Outlook Express, click File, then Folder, then Compact All Folders. If you have a lot of email, this may take a while.
  2. After the compacting process completes, click Tools then Options.
  3. Within the Options window, click the Maintenance tab then Store Folder...
  4. Within the Store Location window, right-click anywhere in the text field (typically starts with C:\) and select Select All. Right-click anywhere on the now-highlighted text and select Copy. This temporarily copies the text to the Clipboard so you can paste the text elsewhere later.
  5. Click OK in the Store Location window, then click OK in the Options window.
  6. Close Outlook Express.
  7. Click Start then All Programs (or Programs), then Accessories, then Windows Explorer (NOT Internet Explorer).
    1. Click Tools near the top of the window then Folder Options...
      1. Click the View tab within the Folder Options Window.
      2. Make sure the following items ARE checked/selected:
        • Display the full path in the address bar
        • Show hidden files and folders
      3. Make sure the following item is NOT checked/selected:
        • Hide extensions for known file types
      4. Click OK.
  8. Right-click anywhere in the Address field near the top of the window (this should highlight all of the text in the field) and select Paste, then hit Enter on the keyboard.
    At a minimum, you should now see the following files on the right side:
    • Deleted Items.dbx
    • Inbox.dbx
    • Outbox.dbx
    • Sent Items.dbx
  9. Copy all files in this directory (or copy the actual Outlook Express folder containing them) to removable media such as a USB memory stick, CD/DVD, or external hard drive.

How to back up the Windows Address Book used by Outlook Express

Outlook Express uses the Windows Address Book and the address books are stored in files with the .wab file extension. You can make backups of these files and/or you can export the contents into CSV (comma separated values) backup files.

Method 1: Backup the original Windows Address Book .wab files

Note: Some other mail programs may not support importing from Windows Address Book files. Consider also exporting the data into a CSV (comma separated values) file.

  1. Click Start then Search, then For Files or Folders...
  2. In the Search Results window, click All files and folders
  3. In the All or part of the file name field, type *.wab
  4. Click More advanced options further below.
  5. Make sure the following three options are selected/checked:
    • Search system folders
    • Search hidden files and folders
    • Search subfolders
  6. Click Search. This process may take a while. When it's finished, the Stop button will change to Back.
  7. Copy each file found to removable media such as a USB memory stick, CD/DVD, or external hard drive, type a name for the file in the File name field at the bottom of the window, then click Save.

Method 2: Export the Windows Address Book data to a CSV (comma separated values) file

  1. From within Outlook Express, click File, then Export, then Address Book...
  2. In the Address Book Export Tool window, select Text File (Comma Separated Values) then click Export.
  3. Click Browse.
  4. In the Save As window, select a location on removable media such as a USB memory stick, CD/DVD, or external hard drive, type a name for the file in the File name field at the bottom of the window, then click Save.

Method 3: Export the address book from within the Windows Address Book

  1. Click Start, then All Programs (or Programs), then Accessories, then Address Book.
  2. Click File, then Export, then one of the following options:
    • Address Book (WAB)...
      Note: Some other mail programs may not support importing from Windows Address Book files. Consider also exporting the data into a CSV (comma separated values) file.
      1. In the Select Address Book File to Export to window, select a location on removable media such as a USB memory stick, CD/DVD, or external hard drive, type a name for the file in the File name field at the bottom of the window, then click Save.
    • Other Address Book... (this allows you to save a CSV (comma separated values) file)
      1. In the Address Book Export Tool window, select Text File (Comma Separated Values) then click Export.
      2. Click Browse.
      3. In the Save As window, select a location on removable media such as a USB memory stick, CD/DVD, or external hard drive, type a name for the file in the File name field at the bottom of the window, then click Save.