We discussed how to fix Outlook that is not responding. Let’s now see how to fix Outlook not opening at all.
- Causes of the “Unable to open Microsoft Outlook” problem
- Universal solutions to “Cannot open Microsoft Outlook” These solutions are for the most common issues and will work in all cases.
- Solutions to specific Outlook start-up errors – These tips address less common situations and more specific issues.
Causes and symptoms of “Unable to open Microsoft Outlook” error
This is the main problem. When you click Outlook’s icon you see an hourglass hanging from it. cannot start microsoft office outlook error Then you get the “Cannot open Microsoft Office Outlook” error.
Microsoft claims that the main cause is a corrupted Navigation Pane Settings file – profilename.xml. Here, “profile name” refers to your Outlook profile name. If the file’s size is less than 0 KB, it is likely to corrupt. Although no one can pinpoint the cause, all versions of Microsoft Outlook (2003 to 2019) may be affected.
You may also experience problems with Outlook compatibility mode or when you use a profile that was created in an older version of Outlook. Or if your Outlook data file (.pst,.ost), was damaged or deleted due to incorrect uninstallation or restart of Outlook.
Whatever the reason, the result is the same: Outlook cannot be opened because of this error: “Cannot open Microsoft Outlook.” The Outlook window cannot be opened. It is impossible to open the set of folders.
You may see several variations depending on the Outlook version.
Outlook 2010 – “Microsoft Outlook encountered a problem and must close. We apologize for any inconvenience caused.
Outlook 2007: “Cannot open default e-mail files. The information store couldn’t be opened
Outlook 2003: “Cannot open Microsoft Office Outlook. Outlook window not opening The view cannot be loaded because of invalid XML.
Universal solutions to the “Cannot open Microsoft Outlook” problem
Let’s now see how to fix Outlook problems. Here are the steps to fix four of the most common issues that prevent Outlook from starting properly. They are listed in alphabetical order.
- Recover Navigation Panel configuration file
- Repair your Outlook PST file using Inbox Repair tool
- Create an Outlook profile and import data from your old PST file
- Disable Compatibility Mode
- Start Outlook in Safe mode
- Outlook hangs on Loading Profil
Save the Navigation Pane configuration file
Most often, Outlook is unable to start successfully because of corrupted Navigation Pane settings files. In these cases, you should repair it. This is how to do it on different operating systems.
- Click the Start link if you are using Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8. Windows XP users can click Start > Open.
- In the search box, type the following command:Notice: Make sure you leave a space between outlook.exe /resetnavpane
- To reset the Navigation Pane settings, press Enter or click the file. Click on Outlook to open it.
This guide will show you how to use the Run dialog in Windows 7 and Windows 8.
- Click All programs > Accessories > Run from the Start Menu
- Type the
outlook.exe /resetnavpaneCommand and click OK .Note: Microsoft offers an automatic solution to the “Outlook unable-to-start” problem on its site for Windows 8, Windows 7 and Windows Vista. Just click the Fix this Problem link on this page .Remove the Navigation pane settings from your file
You can delete the XML file that contains the navigation pane settings if you are unable to retrieve the Navigation pane configuration files or the automatic fix from Microsoft. Follow these steps to do this:
- Enter the following command in Start > Search on Windows 7 or Windows 8 (or Start> Run on Windows XP), and hit Enter.%appdata%\Microsoft\Outlook
- This will open the folder containing Microsoft Outlook configuration files. Locate and delete Outlook.xml.Attention! You should try to restore the Navigation pane settings file before proceeding. If nothing else works, consider deleting the file as a last resort.
Use the Inbox Repair tool to repair Outlook data files (.pst,.ost).
Outlook might not open if you recently reinstalled Outlook and there was an error in the uninstallation of the previous version. This error is likely to occur: “Cannot open Microsoft Office Outlook.” Outlook.pst does not belong to your folders.
Let’s repair your outlook.pst using Scanpst.exe (aka Inbox Recovery tool).
- Navigate to C:Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice Version in Windows Explorer. For 64-bit Windows and 32-bit Office, navigate to C:Program files x86Microsoft OfficeOffice Version.
- Find Scanpst.exe Double-click on the item in the list.Alternativly, click start and enter scanpst.exe into the search box.
- Click here Browse Click the button to choose your default Outlook.pst.Outlook 2010-2019, the PST file is located in the DocsOutlook files folder. Outlook 2010 will be installed on computers that have data files from previous versions. If this is the case, outlook.pst will be hidden in one of these folders:
- On Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8″ – C:\Users\user\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook
- On Windows XP, you will find it here C:\ Documents and Settings\user\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook
More information about how to repair Outlook PST files can be found on Microsoft’s website: Repair Outlook Data files (.pst,.ost).
Open Outlook. If Outlook starts up without any errors, you are a success! The rest of the article is unnecessary.
Outlook Compatibility Mode can be disabled
Let me share a tip that Outlook’s guru Diane Poremski shared with her blog regarding compatibility mode: “If compatibility mode is enabled, disable it.” Don’t bother if you don’t have compatibility mode enabled.
The following steps can be used to disable a compatibility mode:
- Click here Start Click (or Start > Run Windows XP), and then type outlook.exe into the search field.You can also find outlook.exe at the default installation location: C.Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOffice Version. Where Officeversion is Office15 for Office 2013 and Office14 for Office 2010.
- Right-click on the OUTLOOK.EXE file and click Properties
- Switch to Compatibility tab. Clear the box marked “Run this application in compatibility mode”
- Click OK to open Outlook.
If the Outlook window is still not opening and you continue to get the “Cannot open Microsoft Office Outlook” error, restore the PST file. Although you will lose some of your most recent appointments and emails, it is a better option than not having any Outlook. Right-click on Outlook.pst and choose to Restore Previous Versions.