Outlook PST Cannot Be Accessed - Error 0x80040116

In this case, a friend of mine has complained to me that suddenly he couldn't access his emails stored in personal folder file (.pst) on his Outlook. He didn't have a valid backup copy of his Outlook personal folder file, and Outlook was returning error 0x80040116.

Before getting into resolution of the problem, let's first answer the question: What is personal folder file (.pst)? Well, the .pst file is a database file. So, like every other database file, it may become corrupt if not handled properly.

According from Microsoft KB319128, this error is related with disk problem and possible .pst corruption. From MSDN library and List of Extended MAPI numeric result codes, it can be seen that this error is disk related. So, running the chkdsk /r ( option /r locates bad sectors and recovers readable information ), has fixed several bad sectors on his hard disk . Fortunately, there were few bad sectors and hdd was small, so scanning the disk took around an hour and so.
After finishing the chkdsk scan, he tried to access his emails, and still no joy, error 0x80040116 was still present. So, now it was time to fix the pst file. For fixing the .pst files there are two options:
  • Native (out of the box) Office ScanPST.exe
  • Third Party solution for recovering PST files. There are tons of these solutions and I can recommend Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair
For more information on how to repair pst file using scanpst.exe please follow the official Microsoft article How to repair your Outlook personal folder file (.pst)

In case of severe damage of .pst where scanpst.exe will not help, it's worth of trying Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair. Demo version is free for downloading, and you can repair the corrupt .pst file and preview the recoverable items in it. If you get satisfied with the results, you can purchase the full version and save the recovered files. For more info regarding this product please checkout the official page Stellar Phoenix Outlook PST Repair.

So, what can we learn from this case is very simple, it's been said and written million of times and that is: Always perform regular backup of your valuable data.

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