How to back up emails in Outlook

Whether you have email you want to keep because you’re getting a new computer or you’re troubleshooting a problem, you can back up in Microsoft Outlook.

By exporting your inbox to an Outlook file format, you can easily import it back later when you need it. Alternatively, you can export a CSV file that you can open in Excel for review and analysis. Here we explain how to backup emails in Outlook with both file types.

Backup emails with an Outlook file

If you want to create a backup copy of your emails that you can easily import back into Outlook later, the best way is to create a PST file.

Step 1: Open and select Outlook file > Open & Export. Then select import export.

Import/Export button in Outlook.

Step 2: When the Import and Export Wizard window opens, select Export to a file and choose Next.

Export to a file in Outlook.

Step 3: Select in the window that opens Outlook data file (.pst) and select Next.

Export file selection window.

Step 4: Then select yours inbox and check the box for Including subfolders to make sure you have all the folders you created. Optionally, you can select a different, specific folder if you prefer.

Inbox and folder selection window.

Step 5: If you want specific emails, e.g. B. from a specific sender, in a specific period of time or with specific keywords, select filter. Add the criteria and select OK.

Outlook export filter options.

Step 6: Choose Next after selecting the inbox, subfolders and filters.

Step 7: Choose a location for the file. You can use the… search button to choose the location or enter the full path in the box above.

Step 8: Then select one of the options to replace duplicates, allow duplicates, or don’t export duplicates. Choose Finished.

You can then visit the location you chose for the file to open it.

File path and duplicate selection for export.

Backup emails with a CSV file

If you want to backup your emails so you have a readable file that you can open in Excel when needed, you can create a CSV file instead.

Step 1: To select, follow the first two steps as above import export and open the Import and Export Wizard.

Step 2: Choose Export to a file and pick up Next.

Step 3: Choose this time Comma separated values in which Export to a file check box and select Next.

Export file selection window.

Step 4: Select your inbox from the list and select Next.

Inbox and folder selection window.

Step 5: Enter the location and the file name via the path or select them search Button to select the save location for the file.

If you use the search Navigate to the save location, enter the desired file name and select OK.

Search field for the location and name of the file.

Step 6: When you have the location and filename in the Save exported file as box, select Next.

File path field with Browse button.

Step 7: Confirm and select the inbox to export Finished.

You’ll see a brief message while the file is being created, and you can then visit the location you selected to access the file and open it in Excel or a similar application.

Export confirmation and completion window.

It only takes a few minutes to backup your Outlook emails for safekeeping or to re-import later. And it’s probably worth making sure you don’t lose important messages.

For more information, see How to get an email in Outlook or change your Outlook signature.

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