OLEXP: Outlook Express Stops Responding or Does Not Start


Symptoms


When you switch between identities, Outlook Express may stop responding (hang). During subsequent attempts to restart Outlook Express, Outlook Express hangs, resulting in a busy cursor (an hourglass).

Cause


This issue can occur because when you switch identities, Outlook Express creates a DWORD registry value under the Identities subkey in the registry. This DWORD value has a title of Changing and a value of 0.

When Outlook Express hangs when an identity is changed, this DWORD value is not removed. As a result, Outlook Express does not start properly, and is caught in the transition between identities.

Resolution


To resolve this issue, use Registry Editor to remove the Changing DWORD value from the Identities subkey.

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows

To delete the Changing DWORD value:
  1. Quit all programs.
  2. Click Start, and then click Run.
  3. In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK to start Registry Editor.
  4. Locate the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Identities
  5. In the left pane, click the Identities subkey.
  6. In the right pane, locate the Changing value, and then click to select it.
  7. On the Edit menu, click Delete.
  8. Quit Registry Editor.
After you perform these steps, Outlook Express should open to the last identity that was used.