Adding/Recreating a Mail Profile

An Outlook mail profile is a combination of settings and files to support the configured accounts. A single mail profile can contain multiple mail accounts and different account types such as POP3, IMAP, Exchange and Outlook Hotmail Connector accounts.

However, in some cases it might be recommended or required to create an additional Mail Profile or to recreate the current one.

After applying the June 2016 update for Outlook 2013 Click-to-Run installations, the Mail applet may fail to open.

For more information and workarounds see: Outlook 2013 Mail applet in Control Panel may not open after installing June update.

Need for an additional mail profile or recreating it

Common reasons to add or recreate a mail profile are;

  • The current mail profile is damaged.
  • You upgraded/downgraded to another Outlook version (recommended and sometimes needed)
  • To create separate Outlook working environments such as Work and Private.
  • Need to connect to separate Exchange servers (needed for Outlook 2007 and previous)
  • Separately manage an additional Exchange mailbox for which you have Full Access rights.
  • Testing

Mail applet location

Mail Applet Control Panel buttonMail Profiles can be managed via the Mail applet in Control Panel. The exact location depends on your version of Windows and your layout settings of Control Panel.

Control Panel – Classic Layout
When you are using the Control Panel is in the classic layout, you should see the Mail applet directly in the list of icons. For a 64-bit version of Windows Vista, the icon would be listed in the “View 32-bit Control Panel Items” section.

Control Panel – Category View
When you are using the Control Panel in the Category View, you can find the Mail applet in the following category:

  • Windows XP: User Accounts
  • Windows Vista: User Accounts
  • Windows Vista 64-bit: Additional Options-> View 32-bit Control Panel Items
  • Windows 7: User Accounts and Family Safety
  • Windows 8: User Accounts and Family Safety
  • Windows 10: User Accounts

(Re)creating a mail profile

Once you’ve located and opened the Mail applet, you can recreate your mail profile via the following steps:

  1. Press the button Add…
    • Do NOT use Copy… not even when you want to recreate your mail profile or you’ll end up copying the corruption as well.
    • Do NOT delete your old profile, not even when it is corrupted, before you verified that the new one works. You might want to lookup some account settings afterwards.
  2. Enter a name for your new Mail Profile.
  3. Select to add a new mail account.
  4. Make sure you choose the correct account type. Ask your ISP or administrator if you do not know this.
    • If you are using Live Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo or AOL, you can find the settings you need here.
    • In Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016, you can simply type your desired display name, email address and password and Outlook will try to determine and configure your account automatically. If this fails you can still choose to configure it manually with the information provided by your ISP.
  5. Follow on-screen instructions to (further) configure your account. Again; Ask your ISP or administrator if you do not know these details.

An overview of configured mail profiles for Outlook.
It is configured to prompt with which profile Outlook should be started.

Prompting for a mail profile to be used

Now that you’ve added an additional mail profile you should configure Outlook to prompt you for which profile you want to start Outlook with. You can do this in the same Mail applet opened in step 1 and select “Prompt for a profile to be used.”

If you just want to recreate your mail profile instead of adding a new one you can configure it to use your newly created profile as the default by selecting “Always use this profile” and select your new profile.

To switch between Mail Profiles, you must close and restart Outlook. It is not possible to to switch between Mail Profiles when Outlook is running. If upon restarting Outlook you won’t get prompted to select a mail profile, it could be that you have Outlook shutdown issues.

Optional but still recommended

Leave copy on server
If you are using a POP3 account and you want to leave a copy on the server, press the “More Settings…” button when configuring your account and select the Advanced tab to configure this option. You can find more information about this settings in this Quick Tip.

Adding back your previous emails and archives
When you are done creating the mail profile, you might want to add a pst-file to it like your original pst-file or an archive file. To do this, open Outlook and choose;
File-> Open-> Outlook Data File…

Deliver your email to your original pst-file
If you want new e-mails delivered to another pst-file you must change the default delivery location.

To do this in Outlook 2002/XP and Outlook 2003 go to:

  1. Tools-> E-mail Accounts…-> button Next
  2. At the bottom there is a dropdown list where you can select the name of the pst-file you want mails delivered to.
  3. Restart Outlook.

delivery location
Selecting the default delivery location of new e-mails in Outlook 2002/XP and 2003.

For Outlook 2007 go to:

  1. File-> Data File Management…
  2. Select the name of the pst-file you want mails delivered to and press the “Set as Default” button.
  3. Restart Outlook.

For Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016 go to:

  1. File-> Account Settings-> Account Settings…
  2. Select the tab: Data Files
  3. Select the name of the pst-file you want mails delivered to and press the “Set as Default” button.
  4. Restart Outlook.

If you are using Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 or Outlook 2016 with multiple POP3 accounts, you can also configure Outlook to deliver the emails for each POP3 account to a separate pst-file.

delivery location 2007
Selecting the default delivery location of new e-mails in Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016.

Removing the empty pst-file
When you’ve reconnected your original pst-file to Outlook and set it as the default delivery location, you might want to remove the empty pst-file you created during the profile configuration. For this, you’ll need to disconnect the pst-file first:

  1. In Outlook, open your list of connected data files:
    • Outlook 2007 and previous
      File-> Data File Management…
    • Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016
      File-> Account Settings-> Account Settings…-> tab Data Files
  2. Remember the path to the pst-file you want to remove.
  3. Press Remove.
  4. Close Outlook.
  5. Go to the location of the pst-file.
  6. Delete it.

Don’t start with deleting the pst-file or you’ll end up corrupting the Mail Profile.

Removing the old Mail Profile
Now that you’ve fully configured your new profile and verified that it works, you might want to remove the old one;

  1. Go to Control Panel-> Mail-> button Show Profiles…
  2. Select the profile the old profile.
  3. Press Remove.

You’re done! You should now have a properly configured account with your original pst-file as the default delivery location.