How to Open a .PST File and Extract File Attachments

Email content is every where.  If you are an adminstrator who is expected to perform miracles on demand with .pst files, Pst Viewer Pro would be a great addition to your software toolkit.

Main image screen of PstViewer Pro with messages in the mail list.
PstViewer Pro email viewing software main screen

Pst Viewer Pro doesn’t require Microsoft Outlook in order to open .pst email database files.  It also opens the offline .ost exchange databases, as well as individual Outlook emails in .msg format, and even .eml files.

While there’s lot of software that can open email file types, Pst Viewer Pro is set apart  because it enables you do more things with those emails.

This is a screen image of PstViewer Pro showing the pdf selection list.
Select among a wide number of choices to convert email to PDF

Selected emails can be converted to differerent image formats, such as .gif, tif, png, and even .pdf.  It gives you a lot of control over how email file attachments are converted to PDF, allowing you to ignore the attachments, extract them, embed them within the pdf, or even attempt to convert them into the .pdf image.

Extract attachments from email stored in Outlook .pst files.

If you want to extract email attachments from .pst emails, Pst Viewer Pro has a export function called “Only Attachments.”  Select the option from the dropdown list, and click the Export button. Email attachments in the selected emails will be copied to a folder that you choose.

The attachments are not actually removed from the email, but rather copied. Pst Viewer Pro never changes the original .pst or .ost file, so you don’t need to worry about compromising the integrity of the .pst file.

There are many other ways to use PstViewer Pro. A command line tool lets you run it from any Windows batch file.

Download a free trial of PstViewer Pro. Quality is guaranteed with a 30 day refund policy.

How to open a .PST file without Outlook?

If you brought home an Outlook .pst file from work, but you don’t have Outlook at home, you may be asking yourself, “How can I open a .pst file without Outlook?”

This is a routine question for people who use Microsoft Outlook at work, but who hope to retain access to their contacts and email history when planning to leave their employer.  For many of us, our work day revolves around Outlook. Losing access to the .pst file that stores our Outlook data would be like losing a large piece of our memory.

As long as your employer has not taken steps to prevent data leakage by applying perimeter encryption (i/e automatically encrypting all files that are copied from the network),  then it is possible to open the .pst file, view and search email messages, and even export email to different formats.

Perimeter encryption is different than Outlook’s built-in encryption or Outlook password protection. In either of those latter cases, Pst Viewer Pro will be able to open those .pst files for you.

.PST file viewer email list
Pst Viewer Pro main menu

Pst Viewer Pro is an Outlook viewer software application for Windows that has advanced functions for managing .pst file contents.  You can download a free 15 day trial of Pst Viewer Pro if you would like to follow along with this article.

How to open a .pst file
To open a .pst file with Pst Viewer Pro, use the folder navigation on the left side of the screen to locate the folder containing your .pst file.  By clicking on the .pst file, you can expand it to reveal the folder structure.

Each folder within the .pst file relates directly to an email folder that you would see in Outlook. For example Inbox would be your Outlook inbox, and Outbox would be your Outlook outbox. 

.pst file structure
Pst Viewer Pro will show the structure of your Outlook .pst file

To view emails in the .pst file, just click on the file or folder you want to view. Pst Viewer Pro will go to work reading in the messages, and will display each message in the mail list.  Click on an email to have it display in the preview pane. If you need a closer look, double click on it to open in a full screen view. 

Pst Viewer Pro not only lets you view emails in your Outlook .pst file, but you can also search using advanced criteria such as a date range or email message text.

You can export emails from you .pst file to PDF and other formats, reply to messages, extract file attachments, and much more.

Download a free trial of Pst Viewer Pro and you’ll soon have access to all of the important content that is locked inside your Outlook .pst file.