Retrieving info from Win Xp Home Seagate ST340015A

By mk5617 ·
Motherboard crashed - Win XP Home system hard drive still ok - trying to retrieve info (like 5-years of inbox/outbox info!) from Outlook onto a laptop running Win XP Pro.

I USED to consider myself computer literate, unable to sort this one out. Any useful info would be appreciated -


This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

9 total posts (Page 1 of 1)  
| Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Answers

Collapse -

Documents and Settings

by TheChas In reply to Retrieving info from Win ...

You did say Outlook. Correct?

You need to search the hard drive for your .pst file.

It should be located at:

C:\Documents and Settings\{user name}\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook

Substitute the drive letter assigned to the driver and the user name you used on the desktop.

If user accounts on the system were password protected, you may need to enter or work around the password.


Collapse -

Thanks for the help!!

by mk5617 In reply to Documents and Settings

Such a simply reply, but I've found what I needed in less than 5 minutes!! Next step will be to import them. Will ask for help on the password if that becomes an issue.
I'm EVER so grateful!! mk5617

Collapse -

Thanks for the Feedback

by TheChas In reply to Thanks for the help!!

Thank you very much for being thoughtful enough to respond with your feedback.

As you were able to find the PST file, I don't think you will have a problem with encryption or a password. Unless you had one set in Outlook.

You should be able to import the old PST into the new install from the old hard drive.

While you have the old drive connected, make sure to grab any other files you need such as your favorites list.


Collapse -

Importing as we speak

by mk5617 In reply to Thanks for the Feedback

Thanks AGAIN!! My years of stuff is importing as I reply to you. As the saying goes in the way that education has changed - "You can't KNOW (memorize) everything any more, but you have to KNOW (learn) where to look" - and I've found where to look!!

Collapse -

help on its way

by Cleaver99 In reply to Retrieving info from Win ...

I will assume you know how to connect the drive as a slave (or into a usb enclosure) for the notebook to access the data.

do a search for *.pst if you want to find your outlook email, contacts, calendar - its all in one file. Make sure you search hidden directories too.

Collapse -

Thanks for the help!

by mk5617 In reply to help on its way

Thanks for your reply. I got the .pst info from the first post, but found your info extremely useful. Luckily, I had a friend with a USB enclosure that I borrowed to access my drive, but I know there are a lot of users who wouldn't be aware of that option.
Thanks again for your help. mk5617

Collapse -

Retrieving Registry info & Outlook data after crash

To completely restore your outlook express from a crashed drive, you need entries from the HKCU tree of the registry, which you won't have access to unless you can boot that particular windows installation. that data is stored in X:\Documents and Settings\[username]\ntuser.dat. unfortunately it's a binary file - so in windows XP, regedit will not open it unless you're on a domain (that's a guess), as the Load Hive command is disabled. that's actually a good thing, you wouldn't want to import it right away because it would be keyed to your old (non-existant on this installation) user account. but, the Registry Tool program linked earlier works great. so grab that, find your dat file, and you're ready to start. you need to collect four things:

1.your message archive. copy the following folder:
Code: ( text )
1.X:\Documents and Settings\[username]\Local Settings\Application Data\Identities\{[your-user-identity-number]}\Microsoft\Outlook Express

2.your address book. copy the following file:
Code: ( text )
1.X:\Documents and Settings\[username]\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book\[username].wab

3.your email accounts. stored in the registry, original location:
Code: ( text )
1.HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Account Manager\Accounts

4.your blocked senders list and other mail rules. also in the registry, at original location:
Code: ( text )
1.HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Identities\{Identity Number}\Software\Microsoft\Outlook Express\5.0\
Registry Tool:

you can probably figure out how to use the Registry Tool app, but i'll include a brief rundown for the less technically inclined.

click File > Import a File > Import DAT/Hive binary file. click Next. click Browse. navigate to the user's home folder and select ntuser.dat. click Open, then Next several times. at this point your computer may freeze up for a minute while it parses the file. then click Next, and close the message window that pops up. click Next a few more times, and it will show a file dialog asking where you want to save your work. doesn't really matter, so just click Save. it will then load the file and pop up a message about the demo's limitations, which you can close. now, turn Updating OFF and press Okay. the file should now be loaded, and everything that would normally be under HKEY_CURRENT_USER in regedit, will be found in HKU\{[your-user-identity-number]} in the top left pane. navigate to the key you want to backup (one is "Outlook Express", and the other is "5.0") and click once on it. now, click File > Export to REG, then change the first Radio box from Single to Branch and click Okay. pick a filename, and save it somewhere easy, like your desktop. repeat for the other key you need.

Restoring the data:

ok, once you've got your stuff together, you need to reintegrate it. Following the same 4 main points as before: outlook express. click File > Import > Messages. Choose the version you were using, probably Outlook Express 6. choose Import mail from an OE6 store directory and click OK. click Browse and choose the folder containing you copied earlier. you should now see all your messages and folders. outlook express, click File > Import > Address Book. choose the .wab you saved earlier, and all your contacts will be loaded. up Notepad, and load account.reg or whatever you named your first export from registry tool. see the first block of registry entries that begins with the "[HKEY_USERS\ ... \ACCOUNTS]" key? select and delete that section, you don't need it. then delete any blocks whose main keys don't end in numbers, such as the "\BIGFOOT]" one. that should leave numbered keys only ( [HKEY...\ACCOUNTS\0000001] and so on) for as many accounts as you had set up. now, select and copy the first part of any remaining key, from HKEY to the last number (for example HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-12-1234567890-123456789-12345678-123). then click Edit > Replace, and in the Find what box, paste it. in the Replace with box, type "HKEY_CURRENT_USER" and click Replace All. save the file, close outlook if you have it open, and go back to your desktop and double-click the .reg file. confirm that you want to add the info. don't start Outlook yet, as your mail rules aren't loaded yet so all will be in your inbox. the other registry file you exported in Notepad. this one also contains all of OE's settings, so you can go through it and trim those out if you'd like. i decided not to, because there's a lot to wade through. select the first part of a key, from HKEY_USERS to the identity number ( for example, HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-12-1234567890-123456789-12345678-123\ IDENTITIES\{123ABC1A-ABC1-1234-1234-1A2BC34DE5FG} ) and copy it. then click Edit > Replace, and in the Find what box, paste it. now open up Regedit, and navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Identities\{[your-identity-number]}. right-click on the identity number and select Copy Key Name. go back to Notepad, paste into the Replace with box, and click Replace All. save the file, close outlook if you have it open, and go back to your desktop and double-click the .reg file. confirm that you want to add the info.
when you start up OE for the first time, it will ask you the password for each account you have, even if you used to have them saved.
Hope this works for you.
Thank you to vegras, for this answer.

Please post back if you have anymore problems or questions.

Collapse -

Thanks for the offer of help -

by mk5617 In reply to Retrieving Registry info ...

Thanks for your very detailed offer of help. The program was actually Outlook, rather than Outlook Express, and the problem was hopefully resolved with the first post; however, I've marked your reply for future reference.
Thanks again - mk5617

Back to Hardware Forum
9 total posts (Page 1 of 1)  

Related Discussions

Related Forums