Using ‘Rebuild’ Feature of Database Utility in Mac Entourage

MS Entourage stores an identity database in Microsoft User Folder data. This database is a part of Entourage information store. When you create messages, tasks, notes, and appointments, this information store increases in size. Due to intermittent deletion of these items, you may end up creating wasted space in the database and the information store. This can give rise to several inconsistencies as well as pose threat to the integrity of your identity database.

If you fail to open or delete items in your mail folders or experience similar kind of unexpected behavior, you should rebuild your database using the Entourage Database Utility. In order to perform database rebuild, you should follow the below-mentioned procedure:

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I. Quit All Applications

First off, you should quit all the opened applications in order to proceed with the next steps. To do this, select an application, go to “Menu” on the toolbar, and click ‘Quit’. If you are unable to do so, press the Command, Option, and Esc keys together. Choose an application to quit and click ‘Force Quit’. When you are done, close the Force Quit Application window.

II. Examine the Free Space Available on the Disk

The available free space on your hard disk should be three times the current size of your identity folder. To determine the amount of space occupied by the database, open your Identity folder from the Finder. Go to ‘File’, click ‘Get Info’, and then select ‘Get Information’.

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In case the size of your identity is 1 GB, you should have 3 GB of free disk space to do a successful rebuild.

III. Create Backup of the Current Identity

To do so, follow the given steps:

  • Open ‘Finder’, click ‘Go’, and then select ‘Home’. Double-click the ‘Documents’ folder, and then the Microsoft User Data folder.
  • Double-click the ‘Office 2008 Identifies’ or ‘Office 2004 Identities’ folder.
  • Right-click your identity folder, and then click ‘Duplicate’.
  • Close every window that is currently opened.

IV. Rebuild the Database

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  • Close all the applications.
  • Press the Options (alt) key on your keyboard while restarting Entourage 2008/2004. Do not release the Option (alt) key until the ‘Database Utility’ window appears.
  • Select the Main Identity in the ‘Database Utility’ window. After selecting the database, click ‘Rebuild Database’, and then click ‘Continue’.
  • The Rebuilding Main Identify window will display the status of the rebuild process. When the process is finished, you get the message ‘Your database was successfully rebuilt’.
  • Click ‘Close’, and then click ‘Quit’.
    If the above process is not successful and the problem persists after starting Entourage, go to the next step.

V. Create a New Identity

Your Exchange may be having multiple identities of which one is damaged. In such cases, you may require creating a new identity to resolve the problem:

  • Quit all the Office applications, including Entourage and Office Reminders. If you don’t do this, you will receive an error.
  • Search for the given folder and copy it to your desktop.

HD/Users/USER_NAME/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Office 2008 Identities/IDENTITY_NAME

  • Start Entourage. If Entourage is configured to have multiple identities, go to ‘Entourage’ menu and click ‘Switch Identity’.
  • Click ‘New’ and specify the name of the identity to be created in the ‘Identity name’ box.
  • Quit Entourage.
  • Search for the given folder and rename it to a new name:

HD/Users/USER_NAME/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Office 2008 Identities/NEW_IDENTITY_NAME

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  • Copy the database file stored in the IDENTITY_NAME folder (copied earlier in this process) to the NEW_IDENTITY_NAME folder that you recently created.

If the problem is not fixed by the above process, take help of commercial Entourage recovery software. These tools efficiently scan your entire Entourage database to recover every bit of recoverable data, including messages, notes, tasks, attachments, and more.  

Vishal, is assigned with Stellar Phoenix as technical writer for Mac. He loves to write on OS X tips, terms, share information and maintain the OS X performance up-to the mark.


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