Saturday, August 15, 2015

Microsoft Outlook 2013 Very Slow to Start?


This is a common problem with lots of possible causes.   In the hope that this blog helps someone else.  Here are our tips for resolving this problem.  Note that this guidance is for Microsoft Outlook using POP accounts, not when connecting directly to a Microsoft Exchange Server.
How Big is Your Datafile?
The bigger the datafile the slower it will be for Windows to load it.  To check the size:
  • Open Control Panel, Mail.
  • Select Data Files and select Open File Location.
  • Right click on the Outlook pst file to display size.
It is recommended that datafiles do not exceed 10GB but people may notice speed issues as low as 5GB.  If your datafile is large then you need to delete and archive old emails and folders.  Once this has been done you can then run a compaction of the datafile to reduce its size (we would recommend ensuring you have a backup prior to this).  Note that this may take some time.
Will it open fine in Safe Mode?
To check this, click Start, Run and type in outlook.exe /safe.  If it opens fine then it is not a problem with the Outlook datafile.  Try the following:
Disabling Add-Ins
File, Options, Add-ins, click on the Go button beside Manage COM Add-ins right at the bottom: try disabling all the Add-Ins and see if it makes a difference.  If it does you can add them back in one at a time and see if you can identify which one is the cause.  Often people find that they don’t miss many of the Add-ins.
Stopping Microsoft Search
Start, Run, services.msc.  Right click on Windows Search and select Stop.  See if Outlook opens ok.  If it does not, restart Windows Search.
Resetting Navigation Panes
Sometimes the navigation pane in Outlook causes a problem.  In our experience if this is the problem Outlook never starts though!  It is easy to reset them.  Start, Run and type in outlook.exe /resetnavpane
Disable Your Anti-Virus Software
Sometimes the Internet Security/Anti-Virus Software can cause a problem.  Try temporarily disabling your software to see if this is the problem.
Disable Hardware Graphics Accelerator
File, Options, Advanced and then under Display select Disable hardware graphics acceleration check box and click OK (note earlier versions of Outlook do not have this option).
See if Outlook opens ok.  If it does not, enable hardware graphics acceleration again.
If it does not open in Safe Mode
Run a Repair on Your pst
It may be that there is a problem with the pst file.  It is possible to run a repair on a pst, which normally resolves this problem.  Note that this repair can take some time.
  • Open Control Panel, Mail.  Select Data Files and note where your data file/s are located.   Close Control Panel.
  • Open Windows Explorer and go to select the drive:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\OFFICE14.
  • Locate and double click scanpst.exe.  Browse to the Data File that you noted down earlier.
  • Click Repair and select the Outlook Profile that contains the .pst file you wish to repair.
When this is complete see if Outlook will open.
Run a Repair of Office
  • Close all Microsoft Office programs.
  • Open Control Panel.
  • Select Programs and Features.
  • Click on your Microsoft Office program and click Change and then select Repair.