Though Microsoft Outlook is a great and the most widely used email client among the Windows and non-Windows users, it has its downsides too. Freezing is one of the most common Microsoft Outlook problems that can occur when you switch from folder to folder, create or reply to an email, maximize or minimize the Outlook window, or upload\download an attachment among other things. Considering that you need help, I have designed a comprehensive, free Microsoft Outlook support guide for you. It will help you easily fix the freezing problem in Microsoft Outlook.

Procedure:

Click the Start button and go to Control Panel. Double-click the Administrative Tools icon to open it.

Look for Event Viewer and double-click to open it. When in the Event Viewer window, check Windows Logs for the applications that were running at the time when Outlook hung. Also, review the Microsoft Office Sessions for the applications and errors that caused Outlook to hang. Exit all the windows now.

Since you have checked the applications that caused Outlook to hang, you cannot individually fix each one of them. The best way to fix them will be to restore Outlook to an earlier point in time using the system restore point. This will undo any recent changes including any add-on install etc. click the Start button and go to All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, and System Restore.

Make sure that you are logged in as administrator to your computer. Otherwise, you will see an error message You do not have sufficient security privileges to restore your computer.

When in the System Restore window, choose a date when your Outlook was working fine and hit the Restore button. Confirm the action when prompted. When done, your system will reboot and restore to the chosen time. Check back, Outlook should work fine. Remember, to make this work, you should have created a system restore point prior to the time when Outlook threw this problem. Outlook should work fine afterwards. If you did not create a point, don’t worry, move onto the next step.

Click the Start menu and browse to My Computer. Click the Tools and click Folder Options. Highlight the View tab, scroll down Hidden Files and Folders, and select Show hidden files and folders. Hit the Apply button and then OK to exit the window. Wait if it takes a little while to save the changes. Double click the Local Disk C: icon and navigate to Documents and Settings> your username (for example, John Mayer)> Local Settings> Application Data> Microsoft> Forms> FRMCACHE.DAT. Select and delete the FRMCACHE.DAT file. Exit all the windows. Close Outlook and reopen it. It should work fine now.

Try to remember if you made any change to Outlook settings viz. server info, toolbar install, or add-on install among others. To review and change the server settings, open Outlook, click the Tools tab, and select Account Settings. Under the Mail tab, double-click on your email profile. When in the Properties or Change E-mail Account window, hit the More Settings button. Click the Servers tab and check incoming/outgoing mail server settings including port numbers.

Check your email address, password etc. and Server Timeouts too. If found incorrect, correct them. Drag the Server Timeouts slider to the maximum to ensure that Outlook does not hang due to the long period of inactivity. When done, hit the Apply button and then OK to exit the window. Close and reopen Outlook to let the changes take place.

If your Outlook PST file has grown larger, beyond to its actual size, you may start experiencing Outlook freeze\hang problem. Look for unused, unnecessary mail items that are no longer of your use and delete them. Empty the Junk E-mail box regularly. Look for the PST (.pst) file and divide it into various small PST files. By default, the Outlook PST files are stored in C:\> Documents and Settings> User name (your computer user name)> Local Settings> Application Data> Microsoft> Outlook.

The location of the PST file may differ in Windows 7 and Vista. When in the location, create several small PST files. Look for the main PST file and transfer its contents to those newly created small PST files. You simply have to copy and paste the contents to these files. When done, exit all the windows and reboot your computer. Check back, Outlook should have started working fine. If there is no luck with Outlook, move on to the next step.

Use the AutoArchive feature to archive items regularly. Click the File menu and select Archive. When in Archive window, select the box beside Archive this folder and all subfolders, and then select a folder from the given list. Select a date from the drop-down arrow next to Archive items older than. When done, click the Browse button to save your data (PST file) to a desired location. Click the OK button to confirm the action and exit the Archive window. The newly archived PST file will appear under your Mail folders.

Disable add-ons. To do so, open Outlook, click Tools, and select Trust Center. When in Trust Center, click the Add-ins link in the left-hand panel. Point down to the right end of the window and click the drop-down arrow next to Manage. Select COM Add-ins if it is not selected by default. Hit the Go button. When in the COM Add-Ins window, scan all the add-ins. Look for an add-in that looks unnecessary, remove the check mark from its box to disable it, and then hit the OK button. Repeat the procedure for rest of the not useful add-ins. If you want to remove an add-in, select it and hit the Remove button. When done, exit the Trust Center window and restart Outlook.

If you are using an antivirus program that has the email scanning feature, disable it and check back the Outlook. Often, Outlook conflicts with an antivirus program that scans and protects it. Such a conflict often results in Microsoft Outlook crash or freezing problem. Disabling the feature is the only solution to prevent Outlook from freezing. Besides, download and run latest Windows updates, patches, and fixes for Outlook. It will help remove software flaws, performance issues, and common glitches.

Additional Tips:

You can also start Outlook in safe mode to check whether a particular add-in is creating problems. To do so, click the Start button and go to Run. When in the Run window, type ‘outlook.exe/safe’ (without quotes and as is) and hit the Enter key on the keyboard. You can also type ‘outlook/safe’ if Windows shows it could not find outlook.exe/safe. If Outlook works fine in safe mode, it is most certainly an add-in that is creating the problem. Look for the add-in and disable or remove it. Check the above mentioned procedure to disable or remove an add-in.

In case, you are unable to resolve your problem, contact a Microsoft Outlook support or Microsoft product support service.

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