Do you find it difficult to access files in Outlook due to Outlook Won’t Open error? Do you actually know the reasons behind this error, and most importantly how to fix it? If not, then we are going to introduce several resolutions that how to fix Outlook cannot open error along with all the essential information about this error. As we, all know, Microsoft Outlook is becoming popular among users due to its impressive features suites, brand new GUI, intuitive and faultless connectivity with other email programs. However, sometimes due to several reasons this error message “Cannot Start MS Outlook” occurs. Therefore, in this blog, we will learn the reasons, symptoms and the methods to fix this error message.

outlook wont open

Factors Responsible Error: Microsoft Outlook Will Not Start

  • If the profile is of the older version of MS Outlook
  • If the PST file is deleted or damaged accidentally
  • If the configuration of the application is not correct
  • If the installation of the MS Outlook is incorrect
  • Malicious Virus attack or internal registry conflict

Symptoms of the Error

  • Outlook performance gets Slow and sluggish
  • System gets freeze as well as hang sometimes

Methods to Rectify Outlook Won’t Open Error

“Outlook Cannot Start”, this error message ultimately limits the user to access the program & to perform any action over it. Apart from this, it makes the emails and other data files inaccessible. Not only this, it also makes email and other data items inaccessible. Therefore, to resolve this error you need to follow these steps:

Update Outlook as well as other software

  • Firstly, visit Settings
  • Then, find the option of Update & Recovery
  • Now, click on how updates get installed
  • Finally, turn on automatic updates for the most significant updates

Note: It is suggested to have fully updated antivirus software

Practice Safe Mode Opening

Generally, the malfunctioning add-ins in Outlook is most likely Outdated. To control add-in do this as mentioned below:

  • Firstly, click on File menu and then on Options
  • After this, click Add-ins
  • Search for COM Add-in and clear all
  • Once it is done, re-start MS Outlook in the normal mode

Fix Corrupted Data Files

  • Firstly, close all the running Microsoft Office applications and open the Control Panel
  • Now, click on Programs & Features
  • Then, search for your version of Microsoft Office and right click on it
  • After this, choose the option of Repair

Restore Navigation Pane Configuration File

  • Shut down all the running Outlook application
  • Then, click on Start Menu and type Run command
  • An other Run dialog will be displayed, type the command outlook.exe /resetnavpane
  • Finally, click on Ok

Remove Navigation Pane Settings File

  • Firstly, open the run box and type the command %appdata%\Microsoft\Outlook and Press Enter
  • You will be directed to a file location of Microsoft Outlook configuration
  • Search Outlook.xml file and hit on Delete

Create a New Outlook Profile

  • Firstly, click the Start button and go the Control Panel
  • Now, click on the Mail option to view Mail Setup dialog box
  • After this, click on Show Profiles >> Add
  • Provide a profile name and click on OK

Use Inbox Repair Tool

It is very simple to use Inbox Repair Tool, just follow these steps:

  • Firstly, exit from the running MS Outlook.
  • Then, locate the scanpst.exe file
  • Double click on the repair utility to open it
  • Then, type both path & file name of the personal folders file.
  • Locate MS Outlook data file by a click on Browse tab
  • Now, click on the Start tab to begin the scanning of PST damaged file
  • Once the scanning process is finished, a screen will prompt reporting the errors in the file

Clean up Junk Files

Another method to fix this “Outlook won’t open” error is via cleaning of junk files. This is so simple to perform as mentioned below:

  • Firstly, Press Windows+ R and type in Cleanmgr, which is followed by a click on Enter
  • Now, select the OS Partition and press OK
  • Finally, click on the option of Clean up System Files

Automated Solution

If none of the method resolves the issue, then users can opt Outlook PST Recovery tool. With the help of this software, users can repair and recover the PST files. Even the deleted Outlook PST files can be recovered. This software makes the task easy, smooth and less time consuming.


Without any doubt, Gmail and Yahoo Mail are considered to be as the mainstream email options, but MS Outlook is also making its strong foothold in the email applications category. However, there are some errors associated with Outlook such as “Outlook won’t open.” Therefore, considering the need for the solution to resolve this error we have discussed some manual approaches along with the third party utility.