OLEXP: Missing Folders in Outlook Express

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Article ID: 172689 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q172689
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When you attempt to view the folders on an Internet Mail Access Protocol (IMAP) server in Outlook Express, the folders may be missing.


This behavior can occur if the Folders.nch file is missing or damaged.


To resolve this issue, rename the Folders.nch file, and then refresh your folder list. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Quit Outlook Express.
  2. Click Start, point to Find, and then click Files Or Folders.
  3. In the Named box, type "folders.nch" (without quotation marks), and then click Find Now.
  4. Right-click the Folders.nch file located in the following folder, and then click Rename
    <Outlook Express>\<username>\Imap\<servername>
    where <Outlook Express> is the path to your Outlook Express folder, and <servername> is the name of your IMAP server.

  5. Rename the Folders.nch file to Folders.xxx.
  6. Start Outlook Express.
  7. On the Folder toolbar, right-click the IMAP server, and then click Refresh Folder List on the menu that appears.


The Folders.nch file is a local file that stores a cache of all folders on a server. Your subscriptions are stored on the IMAP server and are not affected if the Folders.nch file is missing or damaged. Refreshing the folder list creates a new Folders.nch file. It is not necessary to subscribe to all folders again.


Article ID: 172689 - Last Review: October 28, 2003 - Revision: 2.0
  • Microsoft Outlook Express 4.0
  • Microsoft Outlook Express 4.0
Retired KB Content Disclaimer
This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

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