As Microsoft has indulged the users in a series of app-laudable products, one more development has been added to its repository, lately in January 2013. MS Outlook 2013 is now available for use with feature enhancement and performance improvement. Below is a list of some new and fascinating features of the very application:
- Attachment Reminder
- Improved Cached Exchange Mode
- Exchange ActiveSync (EAS)
- OST file Compression
- Weather bar
- Add-in resiliency
There are many other features offered by Outlook 2013; however, you can enjoy them with the Exchange Server 2013. Furthermore, Microsoft has discontinued some features in the new release that were available in the previous versions.
Despite offering nifty features, Outlook 2013 is also partnered with a major drawback. The general thinking would be to use the application in collaboration with any of the Exchange versions and user will surely try it. However, unfortunately, the new launch does not support Exchange Server 2003 and its previous versions. Naturally, you are not able to use Outlook 2013 with Exchange 2003.
So, if you are using Exchange 2003 and have a desire to experience Outlook 2013, it is the time to upgrade. Moreover, Microsoft has decided to drop support for the bloated and aged server, Exchange 2003, which was released 10 years back in September 2003. Well, it would not be possible for every user to upgrade to different Exchange versions; hence the usage condition is not being appreciated by users. The supported Exchange by Outlook 2013 is ActiveSync. Moreover, MS Outlook 2013 can be used with Office 365, IMAP, POP3 or Hotmail account if user does not have access to any of the Exchange versions except 2003.
The compatibility issue is not only with Outlook 2003 but the complete MS Office 2013 suite disappoints users as it does not support the two widely used operating systems, Windows XP and Windows Vista. As per the previous records viz. Outlook 2007 is not compatible with Exchange 5.5, Outlook 2010 also has compatibility issues with Exchange 2002, it is now suspected that Outlook 2016 might not be able to work with the Exchange Server 2007. There is nothing to wonder about it because with the new releases, Microsoft has been deciding to drop support for the older platforms.
After knowing the compatibility issue, you may decide to not upgrade or if you do, a big stress is the data that is contained in the Exchange you are using presently. Yes, it is an important point to think over. When you upgrade an Exchange to the upper version, data transfer becomes a great concern. Apart from the migration case, you might need an old data in the current Outlook version. Let’s understand the whole data export/import story with the following descriptive scenario:
You were using MS Outlook 2007 as email client and Exchange 2003 as server, say two years back. The entire Outlook data is stored in the database of Exchange 2003. That means both the applications collaborate together to provide you a platform where you can easily send/receive email messages and perform many other tasks. However, as you have upgraded to Outlook 2013 and require the old data in this application. The twist begins here! What is the first thing that comes to your mind when such discussion takes place? Only worries! That’s obvious because data loss may get you fired, which is a horrible situation.
Well, the solution is amazingly simple, but before knowing it, you need to know about the two main components of Outlook: OST and PST.
These are the two Outlook data files, used for data storage in different conditions. Let’s discuss them separately in brief:
OST Files: OST (Offline Storage Table) is known as Offline Folders file. As the name depicts, these files come into action when the connection between client and server breaks. You can simply use Outlook to perform activities, such as reading or drafting emails etc. in offline mode. All the data is stored in OST when the Outlook is not connected with the Exchange, and once the connection is established, the data is immediately transferred to the Exchange. However, when you try to send emails while offline, they remain in the pipeline and are sent after both the applications become in sync. OST is stored on your computer locally but cannot be accessed directly. Moreover, you cannot place the file in any external drive/media.
PST Files: PST (Personal Storage Table), known as Personal Folders file stores the entire Outlook data. The file is stored on the local computer, and is easy to access. In addition, you can transfer the file to external media and so to another computer.
So, now you are aware of the functioning of both files, what do you suspect with this? Coming back to the mentioned scenario, if you had taken the backup of both the files before upgrading to Outlook 2013, you can simply resolve the problem. If the backup of PST has become corrupt, you can use the backup of OST file and perform an OST to PST conversion. The converted PST can easily be imported into Outlook 2013 and this is how you can get access to the old data.
Microsoft provides a manual method that allows you to convert OST file into PST; however, the method might not succeed in all cases, resulting in conversion failure. There is again a solution that could easily prevent you from any unfavourable situation. You can opt for a ready-to-use solution available in the market in wide range.
You can get a professional OST to PST converter software program. The software will successfully convert the OST file into equivalent PST. Moreover, the software can also be used if your OST is corrupt, it will repair the file first and recover all its data into PST.