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Keep your Email Archived « ZolexPC Blog About Us - Remote Computer Support & Help | Zolex PC

Keep your Email Archived

Recently I had a customer who was complaining of a Slow PC, especially when using Outlook.    The customer had Windows Vista with 1 GB of RAM.   The customer also had 15,000 emails in their Inbox.

These two issues combined will result in an extremely slow and sometimes non-responsive PC.    The RAM issue is easily fixed by adding more to it.   For Vista, we at ZolexPC usually recommend at least 2 GB of RAM for Vista.    In this case I recommended the customer go up to 4 GB for the machine provided it was in their budget.   Vista is very RAM intensive and the more the merrier.      With that issue solved, I was then ready to move on to her Outlook problem.

This customer had not only not deleted any emails for the last few years but also had never Archived their emails either.    This is a recipe for trouble and a slow PC.   Outlook is primarily one file which is called the .PST.   Everything in Outlook such as your emails, contacts, address book, calendar, and anything else you can think of is stored in this one file.   As time goes on this file gets larger and larger by using email etc.   I have seen some .PST files into 15-20 GB.    This is very large and will surely hamper Outlook from running smoothly.    In addition to this issue the customer had their Send and Receive settings for Outlook were set to 1 minute.  Because of how large her file was it would actually take longer than 1 minute for it complete the Send and Receive process.  Outlook was constantly Sending and Receiving thereby further bogging down the system.

To fix these problems is very easy.   First step is to set up your Send and Receive to something a bit longer than 1 minute such as 15 minutes.  This will give plenty of time to complete the process.   If you are expecting an important email, you can always do a manual Send/Receive.    The next step was to clean up the old emails.   At the customer's request all emails before Jan 2010 were ok to delete.    With the deletion of 10,000 emails Outlook became more responsive as the size of the PST file was reduced.   In addition the customer was informed to Auto Archive their files when prompted.  Archiving your files in Outlook moves them out of the PST file and into an Archive file.  This does not mean you lose the email or cannot retrieve it if you want to read it.  It may take a bit longer to access it but it keeps your Outlook running smooth and far less cluttered.    By Default Outlook will Archive your files. If you are not sure you can check yourself.  In Office 2007 go to Tools, Options, Other, and AutoArchive.  You can set how often and from how long ago you wish to archive your emails.

With these changes in place the Customer's PC is running very smoothly.  The Added RAM and Tweaking of Outlook has led to Outlook opening and closing faster, improved start up and shut down times for Windows and overall PC Performance.   Even if you are not using Outlook, be sure to Archive your emails.     Staying on top of items like this makes your time spent on the PC more efficient and hopefully more enjoyable.

As more and more programs and other functions are added to our computers, the amount of RAM you have on your PC is very important.    RAM makes it all go faster so do yourself a favor and add some RAM and Archive those emails.

Thanks for reading and have a great rest of the week.



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