In the world of computing, Personal Storage Table (PST in short), is an open, Microsoft Outlook Data File widely used to save copies of user's messages, calendar events, and such other information within Microsoft software, like - Microsoft Outlook, Windows Messaging, and Microsoft Exchange Client. The open format is fully controlled by Microsoft that offer free specifications and free irreversible licenses for technologies.
Personal Storage Table (.pst) is also called as Personal Folder File or Personal Address Book. And when it functions as a cache for Outlook's Cached Exchange Mode feature, it is called as an Offline Storage Table or an Offline Folder File.
Typically, a Personal Storage Table file is used by all of the versions of Microsoft Outlook, beginning from Outlook 2000 up to Outlook 2010. In early versions of Outlook, i.e. Outlook 2000 and Outlook 2002, Personal Storage Table files were stored in ANSI format with the maximum of 2 GB of size, while the later versions (i.e. Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2007) store in Unicode format with the maximum capacity of 20GB. The latest version, i.e. Outlook 2010 can store up to 50GB of data.
PST files can be condensed by making use of "Compact Now" option in Data File Management section of Outlook, and the corrupted PST files can be amended either by Microsoft's ScanPST application or by using a capable third-party application.
Another Outlook data file like Offline Storage Table (.ost) functions as a cache for Microsoft outlook's Cached Exchange Mode feature. With OST files, MES and Microsoft Hotmail save archived versions of a user's Outlook or Hotmail data on a local system, rather than storing on the mail server for providing availability to these items when these servers become inaccessible.Â
In contrast to PST files, OST files are attached to the mail account configuration and can't be backed up or opened separately.
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