How to Convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST – Upgrade Outlook

How long have you been using emails? How often do you use emails? Every other day? No surprise at all! Emails are excessively used these days so that people can communicate with one another sitting anywhere in the world. Being an email user, you must have heard about Microsoft Outlook clients. Or, maybe you’re using it. Whenever we talk about email clients available for desktop users, we find Outlook the most popular and highly preferred one. Though there are many other email clients which give you an excellent emailing experience, still Outlook is the best choice for Windows users. Why? We’ll discuss it later in this post. Also, we’ll learn how to convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST to upgrade Outlook clients from the older version to the newer one using a third-party tool named Sysinfo PST Upgrade & Downgrade Tool.

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Microsoft Outlook

If you think Outlook is just an email client, then you’re absolutely wrong. It’s an email client cum personal information manager provided by Microsoft. Other than email, it helps you store and manage your personal information. Also, it provides you with other features like a calendar, task manager, contact manager, note-taking, journal, and web browsing. If you’re using Outlook, you must be aware of Outlook data file, also known as PST. The personal storage table (.pst) stores all your email messages, contacts, calendars, and all other mailbox content. Outlook client creates PST files on your local system.

Do you know the size limitation of the PST files? It actually depends on the format your PST file is saved in. There are two types of formats used for saving PST files: ANSI and Unicode. The old versions of Outlook, i.e. 2002 and earlier, use ANSI format which has a size limitation of 2 GB. On the other hand, Outlook 2003 and later versions use Unicode format which provides you with 20 GB to 50 GB storage space.

The drawback of PST file size limitation

The size limitation of PST files is definite, i.e. 2 GB for ANSI and 20 to 50 GB for Unicode. If a PST file reaches its maximum size, it’ll cause serious problems for Outlook users which include poor Outlook performance. But unfortunately, if the PST file crosses its size limitation, it becomes prone to corruption. It’s always highly recommended to keep your PST files handy, i.e. small in size. Thatswhy you need to convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST. This is the only way to avoid corruption in your Outlook mailbox. Generally, this issue is often seen with ANSI PST files because they have only a 2 GB size limitation. If you’re using an old Outlook version, you must upgrade the Outlook client. If you think it’s so easy to upgrade Outlook by installing the latest version, then you’re wrong. You can’t access your old ANSI PST files without converting them into the Unicode format.

Note: You can also try a few other ways to reduce PST file size. Outlook provides you with a built-in Compact feature that can compact PST file size. Also, you can remove Outlook duplicate items from PST files in order to get more free space. There’s one more thing you can try here, splitting the PST file into multiple smaller parts to avoid file corruption due to its large size. Read the following posts for detailed information:

There are two ways for converting ANSI PST to Unicode format. First is a manual trick that requires no paid solution, but excellent Outlook knowledge. Second is professional PST Upgrade software that can convert ANSI PST to Unicode without taking much time and causing any changes or alterations. If you are also searching for solutions on how to get rid of duplicate emails in Outlook, they can read this blog.

Convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST Manually 

Step 1: First of all, launch the Microsoft Outlook application on your system. Now create a new PST file.

Step 2: Now accept the default file name and location or you may change it as you want.

Step 3: Switch to Folder List in the Navigation pane or simply press Ctrl+6. By doing this it will become easier to copy Calendar, Contacts, Journal Tasks, and Notes folders.

Step 4: Finally move all the folders from the ANSI PST file to the newly created Unicode PST file. You can do this by simply using Drag & Drop feature in which you can either move the folders or can you copy them to the newly created Unicode PST file. You can move the folders with the left mouse button and right mouse button to copy the folders to the new PST file.

Important note: Before you can try the above manual trick, don’t forget to take a backup of your original PST files.

The professional Way to Convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST

To convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST format, Sysinfo PST Upgrade & Downgrade software is an amazing solution for Outlook users to upgrade Outlook. Also, this software supports the downgrade Outlook feature in which users can convert Unicode PST to ANSI format. The manual procedure may take more than enough time, but this software doesn’t take more than 5 minutes to complete the upgrade Outlook process. It’s available with the free demo version, so users can download a demo version for a free evaluation.


Finally, we have covered the manual and automated ways to convert ANSI PST to Unicode PST. Both solutions are good but manual methods take more than enough time. So if you don’t want to spend more time upgrading Outlook, use the professional method.

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