Outlook 2013 allows for smaller Offline Storage files

by ron on August 10, 2012

In prior versions of Outlook, if you had Outlook Cache Mode enabled (which tends to be the default setup for all users these days), this implied that you had a syncronized version of your entire Exchange mailbox stored on your local workstation.

This allows you to have full access to your email regardless of whether the Exchange server is available or not. This functionality is particularly useful when you’re on a plane without Wi-Fi access.

The problem is that if you had a large Exchange mailbox, say 10GB in size, then you ended up having to waste 10GB of storage space on your workstation. In all likelihood, 95% of this content consists of old emails which you haven’t touched in a very long time.

If you’re one of the lucky few who uses a solid state drive in your laptop, then you’ll love the speed of your fast drive but you’ll also be very aware of the much smaller size of these drives. Therefore you definitely don’t want to waste any valuable space on that drive, especially with old emails which you never need to access.

The upcoming Outlook 2013 client allows you to solve this issue by giving you the ability to control how much content you wish to keep in your Offline Storage (OST) file, which is stored on your local laptop.

Rather than choose a maximum file size for the OST, you get to choose how much historical email you wish to keep by specifying a maximum historical time period.


To configure this new setting, go to:


Outlook 2013 client => File


Account Settings => Account Settings


Select your account (in my case it’s “Exchange”) and either double-click on it, or click on the “Change” button.


You’ll then see the new dialog box option, which allows you to specify a maximum amount of historical emails to keep within your local Offline Storage file.




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