MS Outlook is a powerful email service provider for businesses. However, certain issues may occur anytime in Outlook and hamper the user experience. One of the most common problems reported by outlook users is “Outlook rules not working”.
Rules play a very important role in automating the functioning of Outlook software as they provide instructions on what to do with users’ emails. There could be several reasons due to which the outlook rules may not function properly. Fortunately, with the help of some simple troubleshooting guidelines, you can easily fix the problem.
So, if you are also having trouble with your Outlook email because the Outlook rules are not working, keep reading and find the simple troubleshooting guidelines to fix your problem. But, before we move next with the troubleshooting steps, it is important to know the common reasons behind the problem.
Common causes for “Outlook rules not working” issues:
The Outlook rules may not work if:
- The send and receive file (.srs file) is corrupted in MS Outlook.
- Your IMAP and POP3 accounts are corrupted.
- Corrupted OST Files
It doesn’t matter what the culprit is, with the help of the below-mentioned guidelines you can fix the problem and continue using the Outlook mail services.
Troubleshooting steps to fix ” Outlook rules not working
Rename the “SRS” File or Reset it in your Outlook account
To troubleshoot the “outlook rules not working” problem, you can simply reset/ rename your send and receive settings i.e (.srs) file. For this, you need to access the default location of your “.srs” file.
- Go to the ” C: >> Users >> admin >> AppData >> Roaming >> Microsoft >> Outlook”.
- From here, rename the SRS file.
- Restart the MS Outlook to automatically create the SRS file.
- Once you are done, check if the ” send/ receive” works.
- In case not, proceed with the next troubleshooting step.
Fix the corruption issue in your IMAP account or POP 3 account
If the IMAP or POP3 account is corrupted, then you have to follow the below-mentioned steps to fix the ” Outlook rules Stop working” problem on your MS Outlook account.
Important: The IMAP and POP3 configuration in MS Outlook creates a backup of the PST. You can also fix the outlook rules not working problem automatically with the help of the PST File Repair tool. But, if this does not help you to fix the concern, proceed next and follow the mentioned steps.
1. Delete the Outlook Rules
It is a good practice to delete the rules that are no longer in use or you rarely use. This will help you to decrease the size of the file and de-clutter the outlook rules folder. Here is how to do it.
For MS Outlook 2010 and MS Outlook 2013 versions, go with the given steps.
- Open an MS Outlook account on your PC.
- Click on the “File” tab. Select the option ” manage rules and alerts”.
- From here, you can delete the rules and fix the outlook rules not working problem on your MS Outlook 2010 and 2013 version.
If you are using MS Outlook 2003 or a previously released version, then
- Open the MS Outlook.
- Click on the “Tools” tab.
- Choose “Rules and alerts”.
After that, you can reset the rules accordingly.
2. Check MS Outlook PST location.
For Outlook 2010 and 2013 version, follow the given steps
- Open MS Outlook on your computer.
- Click the “File” tab.
- Go to the “account settings”, and click on “account settings”.
- Choose the “Data File”.
- Choose “open file location” and verify the location of your Outlook PST.
For MS Outlook 2007 and previously released versions, follow the steps below:
- Launch the MS Outlook
- Click the “File” tab.
- Go for the “Data file management”.
- Click ” data file management” and ” data file”.
- After this, choose ” open file location”.
- PST file location is “C: >> Users >> admin >> Documents >> Outlook Files”.
- Close the MS Outlook program.
- Run “Scanpst.exe (Inbox Repair Tool)”, and see if there is something wrong with the PST file.
- Restart your MS Outlook program; it will automatically fix the outlook rules not working issue.
Now you have deleted the rules, you can proceed next and create the rules again.
Important: If you want to delete all the rules at once, you can click on the “Windows + R” button to open the run box, and type “outlook.exe<space>/cleanrules”.
Troubleshoot Corrupted OST Files
MS Outlook stores the data OST files. The Outlook Rules do not Work if the OST File is corrupted. Thus, you need to delete the OST file to fix the problem.
Note: The OST file will be created again if you want to relaunch the MS Outlook software.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Close the MS Outlook window. Make sure that no process related to MS Outlook is operating in the task manager or system tray of your device.
- After that, click the ” Windows search” bar and open the control panel from here.
- Go to ” users account”, choose “Mail ( MS Outlook)”.
- Click “Email account”.
- Navigate to the “Data Files” tab from the “Account setting” Window.
- Click on ” problematic account”, and choose ” open file location”.
- Minimize MS Outlook for the window and also close the other Windows.
- After that, switch to the “Outlook Folder” windows and delete the “OST” file.
- Launch MS Outlook again and let the synchronization to the server get completed.
After this, your ” MS Outlook rules not working” problem will be resolved.
Still, MS Outlook rules not working? Well! You might be using the outdated version of MS Outlook software.
To fix the problem, you need to upgrade the MS Outlook to its latest version available. The MS Outlook keeps releasing updates to add new features and report errors or bugs. Here are the step by step guidelines to update your MS Outlook to its latest version:
- Launch MS Outlook on your PC.
- Go to the “File” menu.
- On the left half of your window, you will see the “Office account” option, click on it.
- Now, from the right half of the window, click on the “Update options” button.
- A Submenu will appear on your screen. From here, you have to choose the “Update Now” option to update your MS Outlook latest version.
- Wait until the process gets completed.
- After this, it is recommended to upgrade your Windows to its latest version. Also, make sure that no optional upgrades are pending.
- Once you are done, restart your computer, and the MS Outlook rules will start working fine.
It is quite common for users to encounter Outlook rules not working problem by using the MS Outlook email services. There could be several reasons due to which the Outlook rules may stop working, for example; the corrupted IMAP and POP3 account corrupted OST file or outdated MS Outlook software. However, the users can easily deal with the problem with the help of the aforementioned guidelines.
So, if your MS Outlook rules not working, follow the troubleshooting steps discussed in the post above and easily deal with the problem. The given steps are simple and surely help you to fix the issue. But, if your problem is not resolved even after executing the steps, we suggest you contact the MS Outlook experts for professional advice. The professionals can help you to identify the root cause and suggest the best possible solution to fix the problem immediately.