Transfer Outlook data and AutoComplete files between Windows Profiles

Recently, we did a new server install for a customer. When I joined the computers to the new domain I had to make new user accounts. I normally run Windows Easy Transfer on the old profile and then transfer the information to the new one. Windows Easy Transfer will generally grab the email profile. However, the one laptop we joined to the domain had Windows Vista for its operating system. Windows Vista has a built in Windows Easy Transfer tool but we found it to be rather “clunky”. Our customer was using Office 365 exchange for their email so we could have left it redownload all the emails, but it would have taken to long and would have been inefficient. Here is how I transferred the profile and AutoComplete file to the new Windows profile.

They were running Microsoft Office 2007 so I went into the location where the data file was stored. The path for the data file in Windows Vista is  C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook . I copied the “Outlook.ost” to a flash drive.

I then took the computer off the domain and joined it to the new one. When I opened Microsoft Outlook it went through the “setup email account” wizard. I entered the

credentials for the email account. Once it started downloading mail I closed Outlook and browsed to the folder ( C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook) where the new “Outlook.ost” data file was stored. I copied the old data file, from the flash drive, into that folder. I then renamed the old data file to the same as the new data file. I opened Outlook again and entered the username and password and all the email was there.

A little while later our customer called and said the AutoComplete file was missing. So I went back into her old Windows profile. After a bunch of digging around in the old profile I found the .NK2 AutoComplete file. The file was not stored at the usual location but was stored at C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Outlook\Office. I then copied the AutoComplete file into same folder (C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Outlook\Office) in the new Windows profile. I renamed the old AutoComplete file (Outlook1.NK2) the same as the current file (Outlook.NK2). I then opened Outlook and all the AutoComplete addresses were there.

This was posted by techspeeder.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.