How to Save Outlook Emails on Your Hard Drive

The cloud is all well and good, but sometimes it’s best to have the security of locally stored emails. Whether you’re running a business, or just want to keep a complete record of your electronic correspondence for other reasons, storing your emails on a hard drive is a good idea – and is relatively simple to do. If you’re using Microsoft Outlook on a Mac or PC, here’s how to save your emails on your hard drive.

How to Save Outlook Emails on Your Hard Drive

Outlook makes it easy to save your emails, contacts, and much more – and gives you two options of doing it. The first is the easiest, as Outlook bundles everything in an easily generated Personal Storage (.pst) if you’re on Windows, or Outlook for Mac file (.olm) if you’re on an Apple computer. Microsoft Outlook is pretty much the same whether you’re using a Mac or a PC: the only difference is in the type of file exported. Despite that, this tutorial will cover both methods.

How to backup your Outlook emails on a Mac

Backing up your emails from Outlook to your Mac is really simple. All you need to do is follow these steps:

Open the Outlook app on your Mac. At the top, you’ll see a list of options. Click ‘File.’

Now, click ‘Export’ from the drop-down list.

A new window will appear asking you which files you’d like to Export, then click ‘Continue.’

On this page, you’ll get to choose where you want to export the emails to. You can select your Documents, the iCloud, and even your Desktop. Choose the one that best fits your needs.

When you’ve made your selection click ‘Continue’ and your emails will be saved exactly where you’d like them to be.

How to backup your Outlook emails on a Windows machine

After booting up Microsoft Outlook, make sure your inbox is completely up to date. That way, your eventual backup will contain as many of your emails as possible.

After clicking on File and then Account information, you’ll then see a window with all your account information.

Go to the second tab marked “Open and Export”, and then click on the option for Export. You’ll be given a choice of two files. Make sure you select .pst.

Make sure the file is saved to a location you can easily access and if your emails are extra sensitive, you can also add a password to your .pst file. After that, you’re free to save the file wherever you like, although we’d suggest saving it to your hard drive and, if possible, an external hard drive too.

And you’re done! You now have a safe record of your emails. However, it’s important to back-up regularly, that way you’ll lose even less if your Outlook account does go down.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I save an email from the Outlook Web Client to my Desktop?

Unfortunately no. The option to save an email simply doesn’t exist in the web version of Outlook. There are still things you can do to save precious emails though.

For example, you can forward the email to another client. This will work if you’re trying to save emails before closing your Outlook account. Unfortunately, it will take some time because you’ll have to send the emails one at a time.

If you have one or two emails to save, consider taking screenshots. You can save the emails as images on your computer’s hard drive.

Can I recover emails in Outlook?

If you’ve already lost some emails, you may wonder how you can get them back. The first place to check is the Deleted folder within Outlook. When you accidentally delete an email it will go here first. The deleted email should appear assuming you haven’t emptied it.

Next, check the Archive folder within Outlook. Located in the left-hand panel in the Outlook app, click on ‘Archive’ and search for your email.

Lastly, the Outlook app gives users the option to recover deleted items that are no longer in the Deleted Items folder. Click on the folder and look for the option at the top to recover deleted items. If you still haven’t recovered your deleted emails, there likely isn’t a way to get it back.

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