Home TechIT Stuff Outlook failed to start correctly last time. – and it goes on forever!!

Outlook failed to start correctly last time. – and it goes on forever!!

by padd

I had this problem a about half a year ago where Outlook 2003 on terminal server would come up with a safe mode message for every user everytime they started it. At the time i solved the problem however a few weeks ago it came back and I couldn’t for the life of me remember how to fix it.

One of the uses of my blog is to document any bits of obscure IT related problems and their solutions so that if they happen to me again in the future i can just look up the solution without having to trawl google and waste time sifting through all the crap. Kinda like an IT helpdesk knowledgebase but for me.

So here goes:

When using Outlook 2003 on a Windows 2000 terminal server, you may receive the following error:

Outlook failed to start correctly last time. Starting Outlook in safe mode will help you correct or isolate a startup problem in order to successfully start the program. Some functionality may be disabled in this mode.

Do you want to start Outlook in safe mode?

No matter what you click Outlook opens – Yay.

No! The next time you launch Outlook you get the prompt again. And so on….

This is because when Outlook 2003 crashes or fails to load, the program generates this error message when you restart it. Safe Mode is a special operating mode that disables several of Outlook’s features but at least lets the program load so you can see existing emails and access other elements of the software.

What is happening here is that the program is not clearing the entry in the computer’s registry so it continues to display the error message.

To fix the problem you need to go into the registry on the server and do a search for “Resiliency” there will be quite a few entries (dependant on the number of terminal server users), you need to delete every entry that referrs to Outlook it should be something along the lines of:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\Current Version\Terminal Server\Install\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\Resiliency



Once these keys have been deleted the message should go away.

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Jolly Rancher 19th November 2008 - 2:55 am

Thanks! That worked

Allen Durie 10th December 2008 - 4:44 pm

Freakin genious! worked great for me.

Kim Coker 14th August 2009 - 10:54 am

Brilliant. I have been trying for ages to get rid of it and din’t realise it was a Terminal server problem.
Thank you so much.

EAZEAZ 18th January 2011 - 10:54 pm

Absolute God you are

nice post

Bish 13th June 2011 - 10:05 am

Thanks so much for this, it solved my problem which was getting very annoying…but thumbs up dude…

Aaron 14th June 2011 - 4:53 am

Worked Thanks!

Jim Tidwell 22nd June 2011 - 5:12 pm

Fantastic! I finally got rid of the alert.

PP 13th July 2011 - 4:12 pm

Worked a treat!! Thanks

Outlook Failed To Start Correctly Last Time… | Today's Lesson Is: 18th August 2011 - 1:18 am

[…] I came across this error today and didn’t know how to fix it so http://www.google.com helps once again.  I found a few sites with the same solution so here is the solution that I conjured between the 2 sites that worked for me.  I will spare all the tech crap about why this happens, if you want to read that click here. […]

Jonathan 19th August 2011 - 8:13 am

cool.. that worked. thank you so much

Tony 20th September 2011 - 10:34 am

You’re genious. It works. thanks a lot.

Jim 27th July 2012 - 5:00 pm

THANK YOU – saved me a ton of time. 2012 and still dealing with it. so glad for a post like this.

Sten Frisk 16th August 2013 - 1:14 pm

AWESOME! Thank you.

Steve Pringle 3rd March 2014 - 12:50 am

I’m getting this with Windows 8 and Outlook 2013 and hope that this will help.

Jeff 18th September 2014 - 5:54 pm

Thumbs Up


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