How to Solve “MS Outlook Not Responding” Error

August 19, 2017 | Views: 5100

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How to Solve “MS Outlook Not Responding” Error or Outlook Freezes When Opening a File or Sending Mail

Receiving ‘Outlook Not Responding’ error can be annoying when you try to open an item or send an email message in Outlook 2010 or higher version. The users also experience frequent Outlook freezes while performing such activities. This error may pop-up due to one or more of the below-given reasons:

  • Have not installed recent updates.
  • Corrupted user profile.
  • Corrupt or damaged Outlook data files.
  • Office programs in repairing mode.
  • Outlook is loading external content, such as images in an email message.
  • Incompatibility of another program with Microsoft Outlook.
  • Another process is using MS Outlook
  • A previously-installed add-in is conflicting with Outlook.
  • Too large Outlook mailbox.
  • Redirection of AppData folder to some network location.
  • Using outdated Antivirus software.


Use the following troubleshooting techniques to resolve the Outlook error message – Outlook not responding.
Start MS Outlook without Add-ins (safe mode)

Starting your MS Outlook in safe mode launches the program without using add-ins and customization files. Use the following procedure to launch your Outlook application in safe mode.

  • Implement the following steps precisely in accordance with your operating system:
  • If you’re using Windows XP, then click Start and click Run.
  • If you’re working on Windows 10, or prior versions of Windows 7 or Windows Vista, then simply click Start.
  • If you’re working Windows 8, then go to the right edge of the screen and tap Search. Type ‘Run’ in the search bar, and again click Run.
  • Enter Outlook.exe /safe. Click OK to proceed further.
  • If the issue has been resolved, then go to the File menu and click Options. Click Add-Ins.
  • Choose COM Add-ins, and click Go to continue.
  • Now, unmark all the check boxes from the list, and click OK.
  • Restart the Outlook program.

Verify Outlook program is not in use by another program
Outlook may not respond to your action if it is in use by some other program. You can view the information in the status bar at the bottom of your screen if it is being used by another program. The use of another program may slow-down the performance.

Terminate Outlook.exe process
Outlook freezing or hanging is one of the frequent consequences when the program is in use by multiple processes at a time. You can end all the unnecessary tasks for bringing back to normal functioning.

  • Launch Windows Task Manager by pressing Ctrl + Alt + Del keys simultaneously, or simply right-click the mouse on the taskbar.
  • Select “Start Task Manager “.
  • Select Processes tab.
  • Select ‘OUTLOOK.EXE’ process, and hit the “End Process” button to terminate the process.

Disable Outlook Add-in

  • Go to the File tab
  • Select ‘Options’ and select ’Add-ins’.
  • Select the type of Add-in in the ‘Manage’ list.
  • Click Go to save the changes.Reduce mailbox size

If you have large-sized mailbox items, then it is recommended to move them into separate folders or simply archive them using Auto Archive feature.
Method to create a folder

  • Go to Folder tab, and select New Folder in the New group.
  • Provide the name for that folder in the Name box.
  • Click the location for the new folder, in the Select where to place the folder list.kindly Note: The new folder that you’ve created will become a subfolder of the folder you choose.
  • Click OK to make the changes.To reduce the size of the mailbox, use the following method:

    1. Eliminate Duplicate Items: – Delete all the duplicates entries from your MS Outlook PST file. This will help in reducing the extra space occupied uselessly and finally improve MS Outlook performance.
    2. Clear Deleted Items Box: – Simply clear the ‘Deleted Items’ folder to make some extra space and enhance the performance of your Outlook mailbox.
    3. Compact the Outlook PST File: This method is pretty helpful in compacting the size of PST files. Implement the following instructions precisely.


  • Launch account setting window and choose data file tab.
  • Open Outlook data file.
  • When window pop-up (Outlook Data File), then click on “Compact Now” to compact MS Outlook PST file.If all of the above methods remain unsuccessful to repair Outlook error ‘Outlook Not Responding’, then use a third-party tool like Kernel for Outlook PST Repair  to fix any Outlook PST file errors effortlessly.
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