Stuck with outlook error – Can’t move the items. The file pst has reached its maximum size ? Microsoft outlook has a limit on the allowed size of pst file . This is in place for an optimum performance which include but not limited to search and indexing. While outlook 2007 supports a maximum pst file size of 20 GB , Outlook 2010, 2013, 2016, or 2019 and Microsoft 365 supports a maximum size of 50 GB.

Cannot move the items outlook

is it safe to increase the file size ?

Users with huge mailbox size seems to get problems using their outlook when the limit is exceeded. One solution here is to delete or archive the old mails so that its not stored in outlook anymore. Another obvious way is to increase the pst file size limit so that it can store more data. A downsize of this is that there is an increasing change that it can corrupt the pst files . Search performance may be degraded and also get interupted from time to time. Having said that, let us see step by step guide on how to increase mailbox size limit

Open registry editor

Click on Start , Search for Registry Editor in windows start menu and open the Registry Editor

Alternatively, use RUN ( Windows key + R ) and type regedit and press enter to open the registry editor

Navigate to registry entries of installed outlook

Office VersionRegistry Policy Path
Outlook 2003HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Policies/Microsoft/Office/11.0/Outlook/PST
Outlook 2007HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Policies/Microsoft/Office/12.0/Outlook/PST
Outlook 2010HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Policies/Microsoft/Office/14.0/Outlook/PST
Outlook 2013HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Policies/Microsoft/Office/15.0/Outlook/PST
Outlook 2016 , 2019HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Policies/Microsoft/Office/16.0/Outlook/PST
table 1

In left pane, choose My Computer, and then expand HKEY_CURRENT_USER.

Expand Software, and then expand Policies.

Expand Microsoft, and then expand Office.

Expand 11.0 for Outlook 2003, 12.0 for Outlook 2007, or 14.0 for Outlook 2010, 15.0 for Outlook 2013, or 16.0 for Outlook 2016, and then expand Outlook.

Finally Click on the PST key

Modify the registries or create if no entries found

We have to modify the below four entries to match our expansion target. ( Click to know What are these entries for ?)

MaxFileSize registry entry
WarnFileSize registry entry
MaxLargeFileSize registry entry
WarnLargeFileSize registry entry

Right click on the entry and choose modify ( or Double click the entry ) , Type in new value the value data field in decimals.

MaxFileSize and WarnFileSize are in bytes where as MaxLargeFileSize and WarnLargeFileSize are in megabytes .

For example if you want the MaxFileSize limit be 1 GB, set the warn file size limit be 0.1 GB less. You have to convert 1 GB into bytes that equals 107,374,182,4 in decimals.

Similarly, if you want the MaxLargeFileSize limit be 100 GB, set the warn file size limit be 10 GB less. You have to convert 100 GB into MB that equals 102,400 in decimals.

Create new registries incase of missing registry values

All four aforementioned registries and PST key are supposed be created in case these registry entries are not found . Make sure no double entries are made. Follow the below steps closely

Only if PST key is missing (skip if PST key exist)

Navigate to the Outlook policy registry (refer to table 1)

Right click on OUTLOOK , Click New –> KEY

Name it PST and press enter

Add registries

Right click PST, click New –> DWORD value.

Type MaxFileSize, and then press ENTER twice

Right click on the entry and choose modify ( or Double click the entry ) , Type in new value the value data field in decimals.

Repeat to add WarnFileSize, MaxLargeFileSize, WarnLargeFileSize

MaxFileSize vs MaxLargeFileSize

MaxFileSize and MaxLargeFileSize registry entry determines the absolute maximum size that both the .pst and the .ost files can grow to. After this maximum size is reached, Outlook does not permit the size of the file to grow beyond this size.

While MaxFileSize and WarnFileSize registry entry refer to an ANSI formatted (an earlier Microsoft Outlook format) file which is in bytes , MaxLargeFileSize and WarnLargeFileSize registry entry refer to a UNICODE formatted (new Large format) file which is expressed in MB

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