Outlook Data File Corruption

Outlook became unusable. I tried switching to the webmail, but my workflow is such that I essentially stopped checking email for last week. Meeting invites went unseen. Notifications missed my attention. Every strategy I tried to ensure that I saw the email and calendar were ineffective. So, I kind of need the application to work.

The issue appeared to be some kind of file corruption. The application would crash due to “a problem.” When I opened the application, it would claim there was an issue with the data file and ask to repair it. I allowed it. It would make a backup and repair the file and tell me all is good. Things would be fine for a while until it happened again.

Back in November it just happened twice. Then in early December, it was a couple times a week. In mid-December, it was a couple times a day. Finally, today, it would only stay open for a couple minutes.

I decided that since my data is on Exchange, that deleting the files should not really be catastrophic. Outlook should just rebuild the data files for me. So, I renamed the data files. (“Should” != “definitely would.”) They are located in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook and have the file extensions .ost or .pst. I chose to rename them with “bad_”. I started Outlook again. It rebuilt the data files. I have not seen a crash since.

My guess is the repair did not actually fix the problem. Certainly, the repair tool kept identifying things to fix.

TED Talk: The Internet’s Immune System

I really enjoyed this TED Talk on hacktivists the first couple times I watched it a year ago and a few months ago. Not sure why I have not yet posted it.

The beauty of hackers, says cybersecurity expert Keren Elazari, is that they force us to evolve and improve. Yes, some hackers are bad guys, but many are working to fight government corruption and advocate for our rights. By exposing vulnerabilities, they push the Internet to become stronger and healthier, wielding their power to create a better world.

Congressional Character

I was looking for a quote on why public education is important to democracy when I ran across this in Quotes on the Importance of Voting.

Now more than ever the people are responsible for the character of their Congress. If that body be ignorant, reckless, and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness, and corruption. — James Garfield, “A Century of Congress” published in Atlantic, July 1877.

Some others:

The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers. — Thomas Jefferson

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power. — Abraham Lincoln

The one I sought:

Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government.  — Thomas Jefferson