Outlook regularly not responding?

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© InDezign – http://www.indezign.de

Are you also experiencing Outlook getting stuck regularly, it doesn’t respond, it’s processing or seems to (somehow) work in the background?
Are you primarily using POP3/IMAP accounts and you recently added a Microsoft Exchange account (e.g. @*.onmicrosoft.com, @onmicrosoft.com)?

If so, you probably have the same issue I had.

Here’s my story

I purchased Office 365 and I created a free Exchange account (as far as I remembered it was required).
Since I mostly use POP3/IMAP accounts (sorry, but Exchange is imo annoying) I added this Exchange account to my existing accounts – just Ias I was used to with my POP3/IMAP accounts.

At first, everything worked pretty well and I really had no complaints.
But after a few weeks Outlook started to slow down noticeable.
It took time to create a new email (to finally edit it), it took time to select different emails (than the already selected one) when switching between windows and it even took time to delete an email when changing the selected email.

This behavior increased (slowly) and Outlook’s response was slower and slower until yesterday.
I was editing an email and while doing this Outlook suddenly stopped working (frozen panes etc.).
I thought, ok, that’s nothing new – let’s (again) wait…
But when I was assuming Outlook should be reacting again, it wasn’t and when it finally (after nearly the double amount of time as usual) was back again, Outlook immmediately froze again.
It was a neverending loop and I really got upset.

Different attempts to solve the issue

So, I decided to find a solution on the internet but none of it worked for me.
Even the suggestion to start Outlook in safemode didn’t solve the issue.

If you want to try it yourself, here’s how to start Outlook in safemode:

  1. Close Outlook
  2. Right-click the Windows Start button, and click Run.
  3. Enter Outlook.exe /safe
  4. Hit Enter

Since I was remembering that this slow-down of Outlook was happening since I added the Exchange accounts, I was focusing on this issue (looking back it was the right decision).

Final solution (working)

I first removed one of the Exchange accounts – no improvement.
Then, I tried to remove the second of the three Exchange accounts in my Outlook profile.
Since this was the primary Exchange account it wasn’t possible to remove this one before removing the third Exchange account (the non-primary).
OK, I originally wanted to keep the third one in Outlook but I had to remove it to remove even the primary Exchange account.

Finally, I had removed all Exchange accounts and restarted Outlook… <drumroll>

You won’t believe what happened!
Outlook was acting as if it was completely new and fresh installed!

No stops, no reaction issues, no processing issues – Outlook worked like a charme.

Learning

I decided to create separate profiles for any Exchange accounts and keep any Exchange account away from my existing (primary Outlook profile).

Mission accomplished … and you will never ever get me back to adding any Exchange account to „my“ Outlook profile. ;)

Hope this solution also worked for you?
Please let me know in the comments below.

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