Address book gone - contacts still there


Renee in east bay

Sorry, I just realized I was supposed to post this here:

I am having a problem with my address book. First time I am using Outlook
2003. Last week I had to recover my computer and its I overwrote the
Outlook.pst file with my old Outlookpst file. I had a lot of problems, but
eventually I was able to get all of my old emails open. My calendar and
tasks are also fine.

However, my address book is messed up. My old address book contacts are all
showing up in that third "contacts" list. However, when I go to open my
address book, I get this error:

"The address list could not be displayed. The Contacts folder associated
with this address list could not be opened; it may have been moved or
deleted, or you do not have permissions. For information on how to remove
this folder from the Outlook Address Book, see Microsoft Outlook Help."

I found some instructions on mine as to how to fix this, but it didn't work
when I tried to check the "Show this address list first"

I found some other instructions that says I should remove and reinstall the
Outlook address book. I'm a little nervous to do that because I don't want
to lose all of my contacts and I don't know how to back up just those

Does anybody have any advice on how I can get my contacts into my address
book? I'm afraid to sync my Blackberry, because I think I will lose all of
my contacts in my phone!

Thanks, Renee

Russ Valentine [MVP-Outlook]

You can just remove old or invalid references to Contact Folders from your
address book here:
Tools > E-mail accounts > View or change existing directories or address
books > Outlook Address Book > Change… >


I am having the same problem after installing Outlook 2003 on a new PC. I copied the .pst file over and all my e-mail, tasks, contacts, appointments are all there.

However, when I try to address an email, I get the message:

"The address list could not be displayed. The Contacts folder associated with this address list coud not be opened: it may have been moved or deleted, or you do not have permissions......etc..."

When I follow the instructions to go to Tools> E-mail Accounts> View or change existing directories or address books> CHANGE> select Contacts> OK....nothing happens. I still get the error message above.

Is there a separate Address Book file outside the .pst file?

Submitted using

Russ Valentine [MVP-Outlook]

No. This question is answered here daily. It is not unusual for the Outlook
Address Book to "lose track" of the connection to its Contacts Folder when
you move or import your PST or update your Outlook version or operating
system. Use the following steps to reset the connection. Note that in some
instances you may actually have to remove the Outlook Address Book
completely from your Profile, close Outlook, and then re-add it before you
can get it to work.

Make sure the Contact folder is enabled as an email address book. Right
click the Contacts folder, choose Properties then Outlook Address Book. Is
the box to enable as email address book checked?
If this is grayed out...Go to Tools | Email Accounts, choose View or change
existing directories or address book. Is the Outlook Address Book present?
If it isn't listed, add it and close and restart Outlook. If it is listed,
then remove it and close then restart Outlook and repeat these steps to add

More details available here:;en-us;287563&Product=ol2002

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