What To Do If ScanPST Is Not Responding?


You might be trying to fix the Outlook errors using Microsoft Inbox repair tool What if the Outlook Inbox Repair Tool not Responding or ScanPST Not Responding? Do not worry! this article will guide you to know why the ScanPST is not responding, what can be done to fix the error and how to fix the Outlook data file errors that could not be fixed by the ScanPST.

Quick navigation:

What makes ScanPST not working or responding?

4 methods to fix Inbox repair tool/ScanPST not working

Fix PST file corruption using PST repair tool

Why PST Repair Tool over ScanPST?

Frequently asked questions

Why Outlook Inbox Repair Tool Is Not Responding?

There are several reasons where ScanPST fails completely and stops responding. The working process of an inbox repair tool completely depends on the amount of data corrupted and the complexity of the error you want to fix.

A few reasons why ScanPST is not responding is listed below:

    1. ScanPST does not fix the severely corrupted Outlook data files( PST & OST):
      Be it corruption or damage, Scanpst.exe focus only on minor problems on Outlook data files. Hence, severely damaged Outlook files cannot be repaired with inbox repair tool and throws an error ScanPST not responding.
    2. ScanPST Deletes the Unreadable Content:
      Every time when ScanPST is unable to read the particular file in Outlook data files, the tool considers that the complete file is corrupted or damaged and deletes the data file. this is a drawback that leads to the data loss from the Outlook.
    3. Unable to Repair password Protected PST File:
      This utility does not work if the Outlook PST file is protected with a password. In such cases, the pop-up will be shown that the Scanpst.exe is not responding.
    4. If a DLL file required by scanpst.exe is missing, it might cause issues such as freezing of the program. In most cases, the system will show an error message when a DLL file is missing. If you have an outdated version of Scanpst.exe, you may face issues like freezing of the utility while repairing the PST file.
    5. Unable to Fix Severely Corrupted PST File:
      The older versions of Outlook lower than 2003 had the limitation that whenever the PST file exceeds more than the 2GB limit, it tends to terminate the repair process. It has increased its size limit in the later versions. Know more on Inbox repair tool not working or responding due to oversized PST data file.

Although Microsoft Inbox repair tool / ScanPST.exe is the widely used free Outlook repair tool to fix most of the Outlook errors, the tool is not free from the trouble.

Due to various reasons, ScanPST stops working. At times, the inbox repair tool starts freezing or hangs during the repair process.

What to Do When Microsoft Inbox Repair Tool Is Not Responding?

Below mentioned are the few primary methods that might fix the problem of ScanPST not working or responding.

Close MS Outlook and Other Programs

When Inbox repair tool repeatedly freezing, to avoid Inbox Repair Tool freeze problem, make sure you close all the Outlook running programs that access your PST file. Then run the Inbox Repair Tool to repair the damaged PST file.

If you still face the same problem, sign out and then sign in. This will close all running programs and then you can use the tool without any issue.

Update Scanpst.exe

Install all the latest updates available for Outlook on your system. You can easily update Scanpst.exe by installing all the updates offered by Microsoft for the specific Outlook version that you are using.

Note: Scanpst.exe is a part of MS-Outlook installation. You can neither install nor update it independently.

Check the size of the PST file

If you are using Outlook 2002 or earlier you need to consider other factors. Check the size of the PST file.

If the size of the PST file is around 2 GB or more, follow the below given steps to reduce the size of PST file

  1.     Go to File →  Account Settings →  Account Settings
  2.     On the Data files tab, click on the data file you wanted to reduce the file size
  3.     Select Settings and click on the Advanced tab
  4.     Now, click on Outlook Data File Settings
  5.     A dialog box pops up with title Outlook Data File Settings open, click Compact now
  6.     Click OK

Run the Inbox repair tool after reducing the size of the PST file, to repair the PST file. In most cases, after this method the Scanpst.exe would run without any errors and repair the PST file.

Repair or Re-install MS Outlook to fix ScanPST Not Working

If you are still encountering ScanPST freezing, you can try repairing or reinstalling the MS Outlook. Follow these steps,

These steps hold good for all the Outlook 2019/2016/2013/2010 versions

  1. Open the Control Panel and click on Programs> Programs and Features
  2. Locate the Microsoft Office 2019/2016/2013/2010 installation in the list and click on it to highlight
  3. Then click on Change
  4. Select Repair, click Continue and then follow the prompts to repair the Outlook installation
What to do if none of the solutions works? Or Outlook inbox repair tool is still not responding? Is there any way to repair the PST file and get back the Outlook data ?

In such a situation, all you need is a professional Outlook data file repair tool that can repair and rectify errors on your PST file due to minor or severe corruption level.

SFWare PST repair tool is the most recommended tool to use it as an alternative to ScanPST. If you are wondering why to choose a SFWare PST file repair tool as an alternative over Outlook inbox repair tool, here is your answer:

To know Why SFWare PST repair tool is the most recommended tool to fix any Outlook error, following table illustrates the comparison between SFWare PST Repair Tool and ScanPST.exe.

ScanPST.exe SFWare PST Repair Tool
Scanpst.exe modifies and works on the original PST file that leads to irreversible changes. PST Repair Tool works on a copy of your original PST file keeping the original PST file untouched.
Permanent data loss can happen as Scanpst.exe deletes severely damaged or corrupt file rather than fixing them. Prevents permanent loss of information from your PST file since the tool works on a copy and keeps your original file untouched.
Capable of rectifying minor corruption only. Capable of rectifying all severe corruptions and oversized PST files can also be rectified.
Cannot recover deleted files or messages PST Repair Tool is built to scan and recover deleted messages, attributes, etc.
Mails with incomplete information or partially lost data due to corruption are deleted by the Scanpst.exe to prevent further corruptions. Mails with incomplete information or partially lost data due to corruption can be recovered effectively. They are labelled as orphaned files and saved to lost and found folders.
Scanpst.exe is vulnerable to corruptions as it is capable of repairing only minor issues PST Repair Tool’s Smart Scan feature enhances the scanning methodology and deeply scans the file to repair severe corruptions and recover deleted emails.

How to Fix PST File When ScanPST is Not Responding?

Download and install the SFWare PST Repair to fix the errors or corruption that could not be fixed by the Inbox repair tool due to the ScanPST not working.

Free Download for Windows

  • On the main screen of the tool, select an appropriate option according to your scenario
  1.   Open PST File – If you’re aware of the PST file path present on your computer
  2.   Find PST File – If you do not know the location of Outlook PST file location
  3.     Select Outlook Profile – If there are multiple Outlook users/profiles existing on your computerfirst step to use PST repair tool when inbox repair tool is not responding
  • After locating the Outlook data file for repairing process, click on Next option
  • Select either Normal Scan or the Smart Scan based on the corruption. Later, select a folder where repaired PST file is to be storedSelect PST File to Repair
  • Click on the Repair button and once the repair process is complete, you will be prompted with ‘Your Outlook PST file has been repaired message’.End ScreenIf you are wondering why to choose a PST file repair tool as an alternative over Outlook inbox repair tool, here is your answer: To know Why SFWare PST repair tool is the most recommended tool to fix any Outlook error, following table illustrates the comparison between SFWare PST Repair Tool and ScanPST.exe.

    Although the inbox repair tool is useful in fixing minor PST corruptions, using the same to repair severely corrupted PST files might further damage or corrupt the PST file. Hence, instead of trying to the ScanPST.exe tool, you can easily fix the Outlook errors using the SFWare PST Repair tool.

    Do let us know your thoughts and questions in the comment section below if you were satisfied with the write up on Outlook inbox repair tool not responding error.

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    Why ScanPST.exe fails to repair your PST files?

    In the article it is explained why ScanSPT fails to repair your PST files. Ost important reasons are. Severe corruption in the PST files and PSR large files tends to make ScanPST freeze during the repair. Therefore, ScanPST fails to repair the files.

    How to Repair PST file without ScanPST – when it’s not working?

    The best way to repair PST file without ScanPST is to make use of a safe and secure repair tool. SFWare PST Repair Tool is an alternative to inbox repair tool that is designed to repair damaged or corrupted files and recovers important Outlook data items like emails, contacts, notes, etc. Designed to work in read only mode, the tool will not harm your damaged PST file in the process of generating a healthy PST file.


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