Outlook cannot create the work file

John Lenz 1,721 Reputation points

Windows 10 Pro 22H2

Office 2019

Exchange 2013

On this system, my D drive failed. the D Drive is used for performance ... page file, internet temp files, some program files, etal.

When I open Outlook 2019, it opens with mail but no preview. I get error:

Outlook could not create the work file. Check the temp environment variable.

Here is what I have done thus far:

  1. Changed virtual memory paging file to C drive (it was blank because it was on D Drive before fail)
  2. Moved temporary internet files location to C drive.
  3. Ran SFC /ScanNow ... ok
  4. Ran ScanPST.exe on account, said problems but fixed. Still work file error.
  5. Obivously re-booted
  6. Installed clean copy of Office 2012 from MS.

I am still getting preview error. If I click OK several times the preview does appear.

Accessing Outlook on another system works so Exchange is OK.

What do I do to fix this?

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Accepted answer
  1. SABI UL HASSAN 305 Reputation points

    John Lenz

    Please try this:-

    1. go to “Start Menu” and type “regedit” in the RUN
    2. In Registry Editor window, you should find the following keys in order "Cache"
    3. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell
    4. Double click on the “Cache” value. And in the subsequent “Edit String” dialog box, input the correct temporary Internet file folder path.
    5. If you are running on Windows Vista, 7, 8 or 10, the default path should be ”%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files”
    6. then click “OK” to save the changes and exit the Registry Editor, restart the computer and check.

    hopefully issue will be resolved, in case error exist please check the below link in which solution provided by Microsoft.


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  1. John Lenz 1,721 Reputation points

    Thanks for this. I'll keep it for future reference.

    I replaced the D drive and was able to copy over the important files from the bad SSD. When I reconnect the new SSD D Drive, Outlook worked.