Registrations are now open. Join us today!
There is still a lot of work to do on the wiki yet! More information about editing can be found here.
Already have an account?

Microsoft KB Archive/172963

From BetaArchive Wiki
Knowledge Base

OL97: How to Share Outlook Folders Using the Briefcase

PSS ID Number: 172963

Article Last Modified on 7/30/2001

The information in this article applies to:

  • Microsoft Outlook 97

This article was previously published under Q172963


When used in conjunction with Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft Outlook 97 allows users to share information in Messaging Application Programming Interface (MAPI) folders such as Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks.

This article describes how you can share MAPI folders if you are not using an Exchange Server network, by using Windows Briefcase


To share MAPI folders using Briefcase, follow these steps:

  1. Use the Import and Export Wizard in Outlook to export the MAPI folder you want to share to a new Personal Folders (.pst) file. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. On the File menu in Outlook, click Import and Export.
    2. Under "Choose an action to perform," click "Export to a personal folder file (.pst)," and then click Next.
    3. Click to select the MAPI folder you want to share, and then click Next
    4. In the Save Exported File As box, type a path to a shared directory on the local computer, or on a server that allows access to everyone.
    5. Click Finish.
  2. Assign full access to the new .pst file to users who need to be able to update the data. Assign read access to people who only need to view the data.

    NOTE: Briefcase synchronizes files, not individual items within files. If many people update the data in their local copy, and then synchronize, updates from User A may overwrite updates from User B. Therefore, the fewer people who can update the files, the better.
  3. Create a Briefcase folder on any computer that needs to share the .pst file. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. In Windows Explorer, open the folder where you want to create the new Briefcase icon.
    2. On the File menu, point to New, and then click Briefcase.
    3. Rename the Briefcase something recognizable such as "Outlook Share."
  4. Copy the .pst file from step 1 into the new Briefcase to make a synchronized copy.

    NOTE: Outlook will not permit access to .PST files that are currently Being accessed. On the File menu, click Exit and Log Off to close Outlook.
  5. On the File menu in Outlook, point to Open Special Folders and then click Personal Folder.
  6. In the Connect to Personal Folders dialog box, locate and open the new Briefcase. Click to select the .pst file, and then click OK to load this file into your current Outlook profile.
  7. Repeat steps 3-6 on each computer that needs to access the shared folder.

Before starting Outlook, each user must right-click the Briefcase in Windows Explorer, and on the shortcut menu, click Update All. When Outlook starts, it will have the latest copy of the shared data.

Users who have access to update the shared data should also update the Briefcase each time they quit Outlook, so that the shared copy will be synchronized.

With Briefcase, users who have access can also replace the shared copy with their local copy, in order to add updates from their local computer.


For more information about Briefcase, please see the following articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

142574 How to Install and Use Briefcase

134483 Briefcase Synchronization Copies Are Deleted By Default

Keywords: kbExport kbhowto kbImport kbmigrate kbusage KB172963
Technology: kbOutlook97Search kbOutlookSearch kbZNotKeyword3