Methods to Restore Data From An Orphaned OST File

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  • Published on
    February 18th, 2020
  • Updated on
    February 19, 2021
  • Read Time
    4 minutes
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MS Outlook is the most widely used email application in organizations for communicating with the employees. It keeps all its data in two program files, i.e. OST and PST. Sometimes, OST files are unable to connect with the Exchange Server Mailbox. And due to which file becomes an orphan and users face the error message when they try to open it.

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In this article, we will discuss how to restore data from an Orphaned OST file. So, let’s get started.

What Makes PST Files Orphaned?

There are several other reasons responsible for an Orphaned PST file. Let’s check out the cause behind this issue.

Hardware causes: When the hardware gets crashed, the OST files get orphaned. There are 3 major causes of this problem.

  • Loss in Data Storage Elements: If the hard drive consists of some defected sectors then you are allowed to only read a part of the file. Other than this, users might face an error message that outlook.ost is orphaned.
  • Sudden Power Failure: Sometimes a situation may occur where the system power fails. In such a case, OST files get separated from its parent server. This condition causes damage to the database and therefore the OST file becomes orphaned.
  • Defect in the Controller Card: Any kind of defect or malfunction in a card that is used with the Exchange server can arise data loss or corruption. This restricts users from opening Outlook offline folders, which leads to file inaccessibility.

Ways to Restore Data from an Orphaned OST File?

There are various methods that help to restore the data from the orphan OST file and convert to PST file format. You can re-establish the synchronization between OST and MS Exchange Server to make orphan PST files usable one by following the two steps given below:

  • Connecting Outlook with the original MAPI Protocol.
  • Connecting MAPI address with the original Exchange Server.

After re-establishing the synchronization you can convert orphan OST files to PST file format by following the given steps.

  • Firstly, open the Exchange offline profile.
  • Then, select the option tool menu >> Services >> Click Add
  • After that, add the PST service.
  • Select the desired messages that you want to copy.
  • Next, click the copy option from the File menu.
  • Now, choose the PST, which was created in the previous step. In the copy to dialog box click OK.
  • You have to repeat the steps for each OST folder which contains the message.

Note: The above-mentioned technique is applicable for data backup from the OST file to PST format to prevent the inaccessibility of data stored in OST files. 

This procedure will not recover the orphan OST files. The OST files are needed to be in a healthy state to perform the conversion. And the master mailbox file should be present in the Exchange Server site.

Alternate Solution to Restore Data From an Orphaned OST File

Apart from the above solution, there is an effective way to restore the data from the orphan OST file, i.e. to make use of a third-party utility. One such tool is OST Recovery, the application recovers all the data from the orphan OST file and stores it in a PST file format. 

Additionally, the software restores all the data by maintaining the integrity of data files. This utility is designed in such a way that it does not require Outlook installation to recover the data. Three recovery modes are available to handle various types of OST database corruption.


The above write-up is discussing the occurrence of error due to the orphan OST file. In addition to it, different ways are discussed that will surely help you to understand how to restore data from an Orphaned OST file. If the manual solution won’t work properly then the user should use the third party utility, i.e. OST Recovery Tool as it saves users effort and recover data from the orphan OST file and convert it to PST file format in exact form. 

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