Welcome to the Office Mac Help Site About | Blog | Links | Glossary | Feedback | Downloads | Help

Corrupt Database Fixes

Rebuild Entourage Database

If you have tested and repaired your hard disk, but problems persist, you might need to rebuild the database using Database Utility (located in the Office folder). Many database problems can be repaired by doing so. To open Database Utility, hold down the OPTION key while starting Entourage or Outlook. Full instructions on rebuilding can be found here.

Personal experience has shown that if you have enough free disk space, most Entourage Identies can be rebuilt. It's a bit early to say definitively but Outlook database rebuilds also seem tied to amout of free space.

I offer help for users on a private per fee basis if you are unable to rebuild. More info

Corrupt Entourage X database and Entourage 2004/2008 Database Utility.

Are you having trouble importing your database into Entourage 2004/2008?

  • If Entourage 2004/2008 will import a corrupted Entourage X identity, you can try the Database Utility to rebuild, but it's not guaranteed that it will succeed. There are no absolutes with corrupted databases.
  • If you cannot import the Entourage X identity, there is nothing you can do but revert to a backup copy of your database.
  • As long as you can open Entourage, you can manually export your data.
  • Outlook does not offer import from Entourage X.

Database Warnings

Did you import, but keep getting warnings from the database utility that the database needs rebuilding.

Note, in Entourage 2008, some imported database cannot be repaired. You will need to manually move your data into a new 2008 Identity. After that rebuilding will work as expected.

The "Verify database" has been known to give false reports. One thing that can cause these false reports is a corrupted preference. Try deleting these preference files in your User's --> Library Preferences:



If deleting the preference did not work, try rebuilding your database.

If you tried rebuilding the database, but it does not work and ....

If you can open Entourage...

Manually Move your Data when Import Fails or move from same version to a new Identity

You cannot open your database, you can try EntourAid. EntourAid _attempts_ to recover emails in any corrupted Microsoft Outlook Express/Entourage email database that is reported to be corrupted and irrecoverable.

Not for the faint of heart....

If your database is totally unusable...You can open the messages file in BBEdit (see tips below)or other text editor. It's possible to save almost all of it. You'll have the text and the headers to show you who it was from, when, etc.

One user passed along these tips on using BBEdit to recover his mail.

I spent several hours over the weekend constructing a really big MBOX file from an orphaned Messages file. To do this, you need a copy of BBEdit Lite and you need to know how to use GREP. Don't forget to operate on a copy of the file, and do some cursory finds before Replace All.

First, look for patterns like:

  • [^\received: from .*\r
  • [^\t].*\rReceived: from .*\r

And replace with:

  • From ^^^@^^^\r

You’ll need to account for messages that don’t start with Received, so

repeat with "[^\r]From: .*\r", "[^\r]Return Path: .*\r", ...

Also, you want to get rid of the garbage (which is the database info) between messages, so search for things like:

  • \r\r\r\r\r
  • ^\**\r
  • ^[0-9][0-9][0-9][0-9][0-9]?

Now, skim the file looking for other garbage to clean up.

Then, save out as a text file and do a File: Import:text file:MBOX.

Now, set up a custom view and look for the text "Received: from" in the message body. You probably missed some messages. Drag this view to the desktop to create an MBOX file, open it in BBEdit Lite, clean it up, delete all the messages in the custom view, and import the newly cleaned MBOX file back into Entourage. Rinse and repeat

It’s a long, tedious process, but it worked for me. YMMV.

David Cortright, Mon, 23 Oct 2000