TECH GUIDE - Online Backup for Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express

TECH GUIDE - Online Backup for Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express

Microsoft Outlook backup is critical

Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express are the two most popular email programmes used by businesses and home users. Microsoft Outlook may not always be considered a database but this is exactly what it is; containing contact information built up over many years, communications with customers, suppliers, employees, as well as calendar information.

For many, Outlook is the key database that runs business sales and marketing operations, especially when used with Microsoft’s Business Contact Manager, as well as the main email programme.

How to Protect Your Outlook

Microsoft Outlook comes in three forms. The main business version, Outlook Proper comes as part of Microsoft Office, which is used for its rich set of features for managing email, calendaring, task management and, importantly, contact management. Outlook Express is a cut down version of the application that is provided free-of-charge with Windows XP. Subsequently, Windows Mail has replaced Outlook Express in Vista.

Outlook ‘proper’ stores all of its various data types in a single file, called a ‘pst’ file. So its name is often similar to ‘outlook.pst’. In addition, Outlook can create various parallel instances of the pst file, for example, if archiving is turned on, there may well be a database named archive.pst.

Windows XP Outlook 'proper' email backup

  • To backup Outlook 2000-2003 in Windows XP go to - C:\Documents and Settings\\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook\

Windows Vista Outlook 'proper' email backup

  • To backup Outlook 2000-2003 in Windows Vista go to - C:\users\\appdata\local\microsoft\outlook\
  • To backup Outlook 2007 in Windows Vista go to - C:\users\\appdata\local \microsoft\outlook\

Outlook Express stores various data types in separate files, called ‘dbx’ files; thus, you may have a file called contacts.dbx or inbox.dbx.

Windows XP Outlook Express email backup

  • To backup Outlook Express in Windows XP go to - C:\Documents and Settings\\Local Settings\Application Data\Identities\{long number}\Microsoft\Outlook Express\

Windows Mail stores individual messages with the file extension ‘.eml’. The location of these various database files varies, according to the version of Outlook, the operating system and the logged on user – See Table below:

Windows Vista Windows Mail email backup

  • To backup Windows Mail in Windows Vista go to - C:\users\\appdata\local\microsoft\windowsmail\local folders

The problem with Outlook backup

The sheer size of the database presents a challenge when you want to backup Microsoft Outlook. Databases of several Gigabytes are not uncommon and the time taken to copy these to a new location often makes it impractical to do on a manual basis. This problem is overcome with online backup from Cloud Direct because of its unique ability to backup the ‘contents’ of the database rather than the database itself. Therefore, as individual emails or contacts are added to Outlook, the service needs only send these new entries to the storage vaults. A second unique feature is ‘SendOnce’, which can recognize duplicate attachments in Outlook and send the attachment once only. Often, a large document e.g. PowerPoint presentation can exist in the ‘Saved items’ and ‘Sent items’ and even on the computer as a separate document. Cloud Direct is able to see all three copies and in effect, cuts down two thirds of the amount of data to be sent. Finally, the service can backup the database even whilst Outlook is open or ‘in use’.

The result of this unique backup technology means that backing up even a large Outlook database, can be done efficiently and effectively, without causing disruption to the user.

Backup Outlook Email Files From Multiple Computers

Microsoft has a free plug-in that allows you to 'export' your Outlook data to a backup pst file incrementally. You can then push or save these pst files to a central location where Cloud Direct Professional /PC can encrypt and send the data offsite.

Automatic Online Data Backup for Outlook

Cloud Direct provides an automated, secure and reliable method of protecting important Outlook data. It provides a daily off-site backup, without disrupting the user. It stores multiple historical versions in two independent world-class data centre environments. Data is first encrypted and then backed up to one location in the UK before being replicated to a second physical location in Belgium. The use of UK and European data centres ensures that users’ data is easily recoverable and that the user is not breeching any UK or European regulations with regards to data protection. A list of features includes:

  • Online Account Management – review activity, change security details, order media or manage multiple accounts, from any location.
  • Email optimizer – the ability to backup large Outlook files incrementally and in a non-disruptive way.
  • MyRoam – web-based access to the most recent and historical archives of data via a web browser.
  • Multiple versions – ten versions of data stored for up to 90 days.
  • CD/DVD restore – fast bulk retrieval of data for when online restore is too slow, or for archiving purposes.
  • Encryption – providing security before the data is transmitted, during storage and during retrievals.
  • Multiple UK and European data centres – providing 100% data availability.

Protect Outlook on From One to One Thousand Machines

Cloud Direct works equally well for single machine users as well as for business use. Individual users or small teams can simply install the agent software, backup and begin protecting data within minutes.

Corporate users additionally benefit from a centralized control panel, Support Centre, where administrative functions can be performed:

  • Reporting on backup usage by user.
  • Resetting passwords and managing encryption.
  • Configuring backup ‘rules’ e.g. automatically backup Outlook files and ‘push’ the rules to end users.
  • Diagnosing end user problems.

Proven Reliability and Support

Cloud Direct has been designed to make protecting data in Outlook automatic, reliable and secure. The technology used had been deployed on over three million PCs world-wide and has proven reliability. Well known organizations including Adobe, Google, Amazon, Visa, PwC, Hilton, Grant Thornton, Boeing, and many more have chosen the technology to protect their own and their customer’s data. No other technology comes close in providing reliable and secure protection for Microsoft Outlook databases.

Cloud Direct layers expert support on top of the technology and infrastructure to ensure that users get the help and support needed to ensure the correct data is being protected and that data can be recovered when needed. Our help includes guidance on transferring data to new hardware if required.


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