Marko Apfel - Afghanistan/Belgium/Germany

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Starting Outlook shows only the splash screen with comment “loading profile”. I could cancel the startup but restarting shows the same. I verified with Task Manager that no hidden outlook process is bother me.



Normally with Outlook the tool “Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool” (scanpst.exe) is additionally installed. Some people could access it via Startmenu, but not me.

My lovely Launchy found it under

"C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office14\SCANPST.EXE"

Scanpst first ask you for the pst file which you would like to scan. I started with the first default offer:



And this brings up the information, that another application uses this file.



To investigate the causer Handle from Sysinternals is your friend in such cases.

Start it from an administrative console and pipe the output to a file.

handle > c:\temp\handle.txt

Now you could open this file with the editor of your choose and search for the blocked file (your pst file).

On top of the section you see the application which has a handle to this file opened (SfdcMsO1.exe).


Task Manager

Kill this application and start Outlook again.

And voila – everything starts up fine … by me Winking smile

posted on Wednesday, October 24, 2012 7:29 AM


# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 11/7/2012 3:42 PM maria
Sometimes Outlook can be quite anoying. Fortunately there are now a lot of new Mail programms...

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 5/15/2013 5:20 PM Gerry
Lots of good info here. Some of it I already tried but I will try Handle. Thank you.

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 8/20/2013 12:04 PM Adom Watson
I was tried scanpst.exe too for same type problem but ended up with feature-rich Recover Outlook program that is paid application by a software development company. The product is good to repair corrupt pst file and recover emails, contacts, calendars, tasks, notes etc into a new healthy pst file. It has split large size pst file option too that's why I preferred the app.

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 9/11/2013 4:19 AM Jeannie
This post was really helpful. I did the scanpst, found the file was in use just as posted above, ran handle, killed the pid clinging to my OST [happened to be Lync related], then ran scanpst successfully to back up and repair my file. After the repair ran, outlook still did not launch right away, I actually launched it, got the "loading profile" splash screen, walked away for a bit, and an hour and a half later it was up and has worked perfectly ever since. I'm sure the steps in this post helped it recover even if it did still take a while to launch the first time after the repairs were done. Incidentally in my case the issue was immediately following my Outlook administrator unmapping a server mailbox to my account while my outlook file was running and connected to the box. The next time I restarted oulook post-change is when it hung in profile loading. Admin change related to/root cause of my problems? Probably, but theoretically this shouldn't have caused an issue.

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 1/24/2014 6:13 AM Jacques
I tried so many things. This is the thing that finally worked.

Thank you so much.

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 4/22/2014 5:57 AM Derrick
I have the similar problem and finally I fixed it by the solution describe

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 10/8/2014 11:05 PM Mital Shah
Thanks very much for your lovely, spot-on post! Helped me even 2 years later with Outlook 2013! A reboot hadn't resolved it, then found MS Lync had locked the ost file.

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 11/25/2014 1:38 AM steven
good solution. thanks

# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 1/26/2015 1:39 PM Nikita
Hi There,

Try the suggestion here

Kind regards,


# re: Outlook hangs during startup by step “loading profile” 3/16/2015 2:43 PM Samir
Hey! very good troubleshooting! in my case, it happened to by Lync which was blocking the OST.

Thank you

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