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Messages disappear from Inbox - OE

by Chapter1 / November 13, 2003 8:22 AM PST

Whether it makes a difference or not, the system involved here is a Win2K, SP4, 128 MB RAM, 20GB HD (14GB Free) with FAT32 format (It's an early version of Win2K that has been patched and updated). Browser is IE 6 with OE 6, all patched and up to date.

I've Googled and searched through CNET here and found a lot of info but am still wondering what the best course of action would be.

I have a user that called me and said she opened up Outlook Express and all of her messages were gone from the Inbox. Now, as many times as I have cautioned them not to store everything in the Inbox I still get the occasional lost message event.

I looked through the file structure and found out that there is still an Inbox.dbx file which is showing as 27,319KB and has yesterday's date. There is also another file named Inbox(1).dbx with today's date and her current email brought in today. It almost seems to me that Outlook Express said, uh oh, this file is too large, I'm going to make a new one.

I tried renaming the Inbox(1).dbx file to _Inbox(1).dbx and just left the old file but all OE did was create another Inbox(1).dbx file when it restarted. So I guess I'm either looking at a corrupted original Inbox.dbx or (and I can't seem to find if there is a maximum file length for folders in OE) maybe it's too big.

What would be my best course of action to try and recover the email messages for this girl? I've seen two things so far; one called DBXtract and another called dbxs1200.

Any thoughts on this?
Thanks for listening.

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The lesson is about backup. Here's how.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 13, 2003 9:38 PM PST
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Re:The lesson is about backup. Here's how.
by Chapter1 / November 13, 2003 11:11 PM PST

Hi Robert,

Ya know, sometimes ya just reach the point when you say (to one's self, of course Devil ) "I've told you so many times, don't let those accumulate and don't forget to back up the folders you want." I can only hope she has learned a lesson.

I'm going to try importing that 27+MB Inbox.dbx file to a bigger, faster machine to see if there might be a memory situation on her machine but I'm not holding out a lot of hope.

Oh, and I had shipped every user on this network the page you referenced in the above reply. Could I be any more direct do ya think!

Thanks Bob,

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Just me writing...
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 13, 2003 11:43 PM PST

27 MB isn't pushing OE's capability envelope. After watching and helping some trying to recover OE content, its hard for me to write much else other than to supply the above link which spells out how to safeguard your work.

The limit on OE folders is more like 2GB and maybe some other numbers.

Last hurrah reading ->

Best of luck,


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Re:Just me writing...
by Chapter1 / November 14, 2003 12:39 AM PST
In reply to: Just me writing...

I know what you mean. I found the tomsterdam site through Google yesterday and it's (I believe) where I saw the reference to those two programs I mentioned.

The silly thing is that on my machine I was able to simply replace my Inbox.dbx file with the 27MB file and it came up with no problem. I can view each and every (well I didn't go through every one :^O )message. So then I created four new folders and moved an approximately equal number into each of the new folders. I exported the four folders to a newly created MailBackup folder on the Desktop.

When I tried to then import them into the other machine it tells me there aren't any files in that folder. I'm thinking there might be something broken with her machine and I'd best try a repair.

Some days . . .


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That is a CLUE!
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 14, 2003 1:02 AM PST
In reply to: Re:Just me writing...

As the light slowly turns on.

A recent issue revolved about the user having reinstalled the OS or run a repair tool. Such is rarely revealed, but the bottom line was this...

Older versions or OE or it's DLLs (DLL-HELL) will cause just what you have described.

Hopefully this clue will help.


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Problem Solved
by Chapter1 / November 14, 2003 2:55 AM PST
In reply to: That is a CLUE!

RE: Your response on DLL's. Good point and may be applicable to this problem.

Now, let me tell you how it was solved.
1. Opened her Inbox.dbx using my machine.
2. Created four folders in OE (ME-1 through 4)
3. Divided the Inbox messages into equal groups of four by moving them to the four new folders.
4. Transferred via our server to her personal folder.
5. Found a folder in her OE that was empty.
6. Copied those four folders I created to her C:\Documents and Settings\<person>\Local Settings\Application Data\etc.\etc. down to the Outlook Express.
7. Once there, I renamed the empty folder using an Underscore in front of the original name.
8. Renamed one of the four folders I had moved in there as the same name of the empty folder.
9. Restarted OE and clicked on that folder and there were the messages.
10. I repeated that process three more times and was able to recover all of the original messages.

I wouldn't have believed it and still don't understand why just moving the new .dbx files into that OE database folder didn't work but I'm not going to press it. She's happy, I can get back to my own work and there's peace in the Sales Dept. once again.

Thanks for hanging in there, Bob.

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by TOMMYGIRL1234 / September 16, 2008 8:28 AM PDT


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(NT) Strangest post I have seen - 1st time poster - old thread :(
by glenn30 / September 17, 2008 1:31 AM PDT
In reply to: KAYCEE120602YAHOO.COM
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