Backing up email in your (Microsoft 365) account in Outlook for Windows

Your account will be automatically deleted after you leave the University and cannot be recovered. If you want to back up your emails and contacts, you need to create a backup personal storage (PST) file in Outlook before your NetID expires and you lose access to your email account.

  1. Select File on the main tab in Outlook.
  2. Select Open & Export in the left panel, then select Import/Export.

    open & export tab

  3. Select Export to a file, then click Next.
  4. Select Outlook Data File (.pst), then click Next.
  5. Select the folder(s) you would like to save and click Next. 
    • Selecting the top level account folder will save all email messages, contacts, calendar information.
    • Check Include subfolders to include all subfolders under the main folder.

      This is a screenshot depicting the "Export Outlook Data File" screen, with "Inbox" selected and "Include Subfolders" checked.

  6. Choose file name and save location.
  7. Select Replace duplicates with items exported and click Finish.

    This is a screenshot of the "Export Outlook Data File" window, with "Documents\Outlook Files\backup.pst" entered into the "Save exported file as" field.

  8. Enter a password (optional)
    • Note: If you opt to create a password, make sure you save it in a safe location. 

For additional assistance please contact the IT Support Center at 847-491-4357 (1-HELP) or via email at

Keywords:backup export PST Exchange O365 M365   Doc ID:62237
Owner:TSS Tier 2 .Group:Northwestern
Created:2016-03-25 22:06 CDTUpdated:2020-12-14 12:18 CDT
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