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Plan antivirus scanning for Outlook 2010

Office 2010

Published: October 25, 2011

When you plan antivirus scanning for Microsoft Outlook 2010 files and email messages, take precautions to prevent the issues that can arise.

Scanning Outlook files

Outlook Data Files (*.pst) and Offline Folder files (*.ost) are the most frequently-accessed Outlook files. If you use antivirus software to perform file-level scanning on them, while Outlook is in use, data corruption issues might result.

Data corruption issues might also result when you scan Outlook address book files (*.oab ), Outlook nickname files (*.nk2 ), Send/receive settings files (*.srs ), *.xml files, outcmd.dat, and Outlprnt, although the possibilities of this occurrence are significantly reduced because people access these files far less frequently.

Scanning email messages

We we do not recommend that you scan *.pst, *.ost, and other Outlook files directly. Instead, we recommend that you scan email message attachments on the email server and on the Outlook client computer.

  • To scan email messages that are on an email server you must use antivirus software that was developed to scan incoming and outgoing e-mail.

    • To scan email messages that are on the Exchange Server, use an antivirus software program that is Exchange-aware.

    • If your email messages are on an email server that is located at an Internet service provider (ISP), verify that the ISP is using antivirus software to scan incoming and outgoing email messages.

  • To scan the attachments that are included in email messages on the client computer, use antivirus software on the client computer. We recommend this in case an unwanted message reaches your email client because antivirus software on the email server failed to identify it.

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