Microsoft uses .pst file format in Outlook to store the user’s emails, contacts, calendar, important notes, memos and various other important things. These emails and files are connected to various other email operators. Basically, .pst files are binary, undocumented files and are a much closed format whereas in this era of open source and cloud computing where in all data is required to be easily transformable into various formats. .pst files were not inter portable on other operating systems and were creating hindrances for many of its users. This was also resulting in many users shying away from using Microsoft Outlook.
To overcome this problem Microsoft announced that it shall make all the undocumented .pst files and its scripts to public, this way open source operators could work on it and make the Microsoft Outlook inter portable. This is the first time that the software industry giant has taken such a step. Microsoft will release the major documentation of .pst files sooner for greater and enhanced computing experience for its users. This way the users and developers will be allowed to read, create, and interoperate with the data in .pst files in server and client scenarios using the programming language and operating system of their choice.
Paul Lorimer, Group Manager at Microsoft Office Interoperability, said that this decade has brought a lot of change in the user’s and developer’s mind, as the user is offered a huge host of operating systems to work on, he requires more and more data inter portability option. He added that Microsoft will work for the betterment of its user and release major documents regarding the .pst file of Outlook. This shows a clear change in the policies amongst the Microsoft chambers.
.pst files have been termed as a big problem when one requires switching details off Outlook, or breaking away from Outlook and converting all the information. Now, chunks of information which could be in GB, to be kept as it is in Microsoft Outlook in .pst if one wanted to leave it, and people who are not willing to do away with a huge history of emails have to stick too Outlook.
Currently, the Microsoft Office application works on XML formats which is open source standardizations, and not locking in the users in its web of closed source formats. While Microsoft has decided to give away the closed source format for Outlook, it will bring relief for its millions of customers hanging between Outlook and other formats of email archiving. The days of complex data base management amongst Outlook will come to an end; the closed formatting will end soon and bring open sourcing into Outlook. This will just make email archiving, storing and accessing easy and user friendly.