Cannot Delete This Outlook Data File (Solved)

A few Windows users are facing the issue “You cannot delete this Outlook data file” when trying to delete the corrupted Outlook data file and deleting an account from it. This is mainly due to the corrupted .pst or .ost file or corrupted user profile account. In this article, we have different methods to solve this issue.

Method 1: End The Outlook Task


Step 1: Right-click on the taskbar and click on Task Manager


Task Manager


Step 2: Go to the processes tab and find Microsoft Outlook

Step 3: Right-click on Outlook and click on End task. Similarly, do it for all the entries of Outlook. This will close Outlook and then check if the issue is solved.


End Task


Method 2: Close The PST / OST Files From The Outlook


Step 1: Open the Outlook

Step 2: On the left side, right click on the Outlook data file (PST/ OST file)

Step 3: Then click on close “outlook data file”


Method 3: Delete PST / OST Files Manually


Step 1: Open the File explorer using Windows + E keys together

Step 2: Click on View tab




Step 3: Enable Hidden items by clicking on the checkbox beside it


Hidden Items


Step 4: Copy the following path and paste it in the file explorer address bar then enter





Step 5: Right click on the .ost file and click on delete




Method 4: Remove The Outlook Profile


Step 1: Firstly close Outlook and all its traces. Open the run prompt using Windows + R keys together

Step 2: Type control in the run prompt and hit enter. This will open the control panel



Step 3: On the right side, click on the view by drop down and select Large icons


Large Icons


Step 4: Click on the Mail (Microsoft Outlook) option




Step 5: In the opened window under Profiles section click on Show Profiles button


Show Profiles


Step 6: Select your Outlook profile which is giving the issue and click on Remove




Step 7: Click on yes in the confirmation window

Step 8: Restart the computer and check if the issue is resolved


Method 5: Delete Email Accounts Using Registry Editor


Step 1: Open the run prompt using Windows + R keys together

Step 2: Type regedit.exe in the run prompt and hit enter




Step 3: A user account control window will open, click on yes. This will open the registry editor

Step 4: Navigate to the following path in your registry editor

Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows


Registry Path


Note: If you did not find this path in your system, then this method is not applicable in your case.

Step 5: Right click on the Windows Messaging Subsystem and click on Delete. This will remove all mail account data

Step 6: Restart the computer and check if the issue is solved.

That’s it! I hope this article is helpful and let us know which of the above method worked for you. Thank you!!