How to Restart Outlook

Microsoft Outlook is a widely used email client that provides users with a plethora of features for managing emails, calendars, contacts, and tasks. However, like any software application, Outlook can encounter issues that may require a restart to resolve. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore various methods to restart Outlook effectively.

1. Why Restart Outlook?

Before diving into the methods of restarting Outlook, it’s essential to understand why such action may be necessary. Common reasons for restarting Outlook include:

Performance issues: Outlook may become sluggish or unresponsive due to prolonged usage or resource-intensive tasks.

Error messages: Certain errors or glitches within Outlook may necessitate a restart to clear the issue.

Software updates: After installing updates or making changes to Outlook settings, a restart may be required for the changes to take effect.

Troubleshooting: When encountering persistent issues with Outlook, restarting the application can often be a simple yet effective troubleshooting step.

2. Restart Outlook Using Task Manager

One of the quickest ways to restart Outlook is by using the Task Manager in Windows. Follow these steps:

Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open the Task Manager.

In the Processes tab, locate “Outlook” in the list of running applications.

Right-click on “Outlook” and select “End Task” from the context menu.

Confirm the action if prompted.

Once Outlook has been terminated, relaunch the application from the Start menu or desktop shortcut.

3. Restart Outlook via Command Prompt

Another method to restart Outlook involves using the Command Prompt. Here’s how:

Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.

Type “cmd” and press Enter to open Command Prompt.

In the Command Prompt window, type the following command and press Enter:


Copy code

taskkill /f /im outlook.exe

This command forcibly terminates the Outlook process.

After the process is terminated, close the Command Prompt window.

Proceed to reopen Outlook as usual.

4. Restart Outlook in Safe Mode

If Outlook is experiencing persistent issues or crashes, restarting it in Safe Mode can help diagnose and troubleshoot the problem. Follow these steps:

Close Outlook if it’s currently running.

Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.

Type “outlook.exe /safe” and press Enter.

Outlook will launch in Safe Mode, indicated by the words “Safe Mode” displayed in the application window title bar.

Use Outlook in Safe Mode to identify and address any issues.

After troubleshooting, close Outlook and reopen it normally to exit Safe Mode.

5. Restart Outlook Profile

Sometimes, problems with Outlook may be attributed to a corrupted user profile. Restarting the Outlook profile can help resolve such issues. Here’s how:

Close Outlook completely.

Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.

Type “Control Panel” and press Enter to open the Control Panel.

In the Control Panel, navigate to “Mail” (or “Mail (32-bit)” if applicable).

Click on “Show Profiles.”

Select the Outlook profile you wish to restart and click on “Properties.”

In the Mail Setup – Outlook dialog box, click on “Email Accounts.”

Select the email account associated with the profile and click on “Remove.”

Confirm the removal of the email account.

Close the Mail Setup – Outlook dialog box and the Control Panel.

Reopen Outlook, and it will prompt you to configure the email account again.

Follow the on-screen instructions to set up the email account.

Once the profile is recreated, check if the issue persists.

6. Restart Outlook with Add-Ins Disabled

Third-party add-ins can sometimes cause compatibility issues or conflicts with Outlook. Restarting Outlook with add-ins disabled can help isolate the problem. Here’s how:

Close Outlook.

Press Win + R to open the Run dialog box.

Type “outlook.exe /safe” and press Enter.

Outlook will open in Safe Mode with add-ins disabled.

Navigate to the File tab and click on “Options.”

In the Outlook Options window, select “Add-Ins” from the left sidebar.

In the Manage dropdown menu at the bottom, select “COM Add-ins” and click on “Go.”

Clear the checkboxes next to each add-in listed and click “OK.”

Close and reopen Outlook to see if the issue persists.

7. Restart Computer

If none of the above methods resolve the issue, restarting the computer can sometimes provide a fresh start and resolve underlying issues that may be affecting Outlook’s performance.


Restarting Outlook is a fundamental troubleshooting step that can resolve a variety of issues, from performance issues to error messages. By following the methods outlined in this guide, users can effectively restart Outlook and resume their productivity without undue interruptions. Whether it’s through Task Manager, Command Prompt, Safe Mode, or other techniques, restarting Outlook is a straightforward process that can often yield significant benefits.

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