.MAI File Recovery

Have files been deleted due to a user’s error or software error? Have you formatted a disk by accident and need to know how to recover the files? Read our .MAI file recovery guide for Windows, MacOS, Android and IOS in 2023.

MAI File Recovery

What is a .MAI file?

Single mail file processed by Microsoft Mail, Microsoft's mail server program; contains actual message data and may be referenced by one or more mailbag record (.MBG) files.

What Are Common Causes of ".MAI" Files Lost or Failure?

There are several common causes of ".MAI" files being lost or failing:

  1. Accidental deletion: Users may accidentally delete the ".MAI" files while cleaning up their system or organizing their files.
  2. Software or hardware issues: Issues with the email client software or the hardware it is running on can lead to ".MAI" file corruption or loss. This can include software crashes, power outages, or hardware failures.
  3. Virus or malware attacks: Malicious software can infect and corrupt ".MAI" files, leading to their loss or failure.
  4. File system errors: Errors in the file system, such as disk corruption or bad sectors, can cause ".MAI" files to become inaccessible or corrupt.
  5. Email client upgrades or updates: Upgrading or updating the email client software may sometimes lead to compatibility issues, resulting in ".MAI" file loss or failure.
  6. Improper shutdown: If the email client is not closed properly, such as during a system crash or sudden power loss, it can result in ".MAI" file corruption or loss.
  7. User error: Users may mistakenly move or rename ".MAI" files, resulting in their loss or failure.
  8. Email client settings: Incorrect configuration or changes in email client settings can sometimes lead to ".MAI" file issues.

It is always recommended to regularly back up important files, including ".MAI" files, to prevent loss or failure.

How to recover lost ".MAI" files?

Sometimes while working with a computer, laptop or other stationary or mobile devices, you may encounter various bugs, freezes, hardware or software failures, even in spite of regular updates and junk cleaning. As a result, an important ".MAI" file may be deleted.

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🧺 How to Recover Files and Folders After Sending Them to the Recycle Bin and Deleting? (Windows 11)

🧺 How to Recover Files and Folders After Sending Them to the Recycle Bin and Deleting? (Windows 11)

By no means should you think that the only way to recover a ".MAI" file is always to create it once more.

Use programs for recovering ".MAI" files if a file was lost after accidental or deliberate deleting, formatting the memory card or the internal storage, cleaning the storage device, after a virus attack or a system failure.

Programs to recover ".MAI" files

Looking for a way to get files back? In cases when files were deleted and they cannot be restored by using standard operating system tools, use Hetman Partition Recovery.

The tool recovers data from any devices, regardless of the cause of data loss.

Follow the directions below:

  1. Download Hetman Partition Recovery, install and start the program.

  2. The program will automatically scan the computer and display all hard disks and removable drives connected to it, as well as physical and local disks.

    File Recovery Software
  3. Double-click on the disk from which you need to recover ".MAI" files, and select analysis type.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Analysis Type
  4. When the scanning is over, you will be shown the files for recovery.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Files that Can be Restored
  5. To find a file you need, use the program’s interface to open the folder it was deleted from, or go to the folder "Content-Aware Analysis" and select the required file type.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Deep Scan
  6. Select the files you have been looking for and click "Recovery".

    File Recovery Software - Files List for Recovery
  7. Choose one of the methods for saving the files and recover them.

    Saving recovered files in Hetman Partition Recovery

How to open file with ".MAI" extension?

Looking for how to open a stereo microsoft Mail File image file file?

Programs that open ".MAI" files

HEX Editor HEX Editor

Additional Information

  • File type: Microsoft Mail File

  • File extension: .MAI

  • Developer: Microsoft

  • Category: Data Files

  • Format: N/A


We will be happy to answer your questions!

Comments (1)

  • Hetman Software: Data Recovery
    Hetman Software: Data Recovery 18.12.2019 11:52 #
    Leave a comment if you have any questions about Recovering lost .MAI files after deleting, cleaning or formatting!
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Vladimir Artiukh

Author: Vladimir Artiukh, Technical Writer

Vladimir Artiukh is a technical writer for Hetman Software, as well as the voice and face of their English-speaking YouTube channel, Hetman Software: Data Recovery for Windows. He handles tutorials, how-tos, and detailed reviews on how the company’s tools work with all kinds of data storage devices.

Oleg Afonin

Editor: Oleg Afonin, Technical Writer

Oleg Afonin is an expert in mobile forensics, data recovery and computer systems. He often attends large data security conferences, and writes several blogs for such resources as xaker.ru, Elcomsoft and Habr. In addition to his online activities, Oleg’s articles are also published in professional magazines. Also, Oleg Afonin is the co-author of a well-known book, Mobile Forensics - Advanced Investigative Strategies.


Questions and answers

  • What are the common reasons for a ".MAI" file to become corrupted or damaged, requiring repair?

    There are several common reasons for a ".MAI" file to become corrupted or damaged, requiring repair:

    1. Software or system crashes: If the email client or application crashes while accessing or saving the ".MAI" file, it can lead to corruption.
    2. Power outages or improper shutdowns: Abrupt power loss or improper shutdowns can interrupt the saving or accessing process of the ".MAI" file, resulting in corruption.
    3. Virus or malware infections: If the ".MAI" file gets infected by a virus or malware, it can become corrupted or damaged.
    4. Storage media issues: If the storage media where the ".MAI" file is stored (such as a hard drive or memory card) has bad sectors or other issues, it can cause corruption.
    5. File system errors: Errors within the file system structure, such as file system corruption or disk errors, can lead to ".MAI" file corruption.
    6. Insufficient disk space: If the disk where the ".MAI" file is located runs out of space, it can cause corruption or damage to the file.
    7. Incompatibility issues: If the ".MAI" file is opened or accessed by an incompatible email client or application, it can result in corruption.
    8. Human errors: Accidental deletion, improper editing, or mishandling of the ".MAI" file can also lead to corruption or damage.

    It is important to regularly backup your email files to prevent data loss in case of corruption or damage.

  • What are the recommended methods or software tools for repairing a corrupted or damaged ".MAI" file?

    There are several methods and software tools that can be used to repair a corrupted or damaged ".MAI" file. Here are some recommended options:

    1. Use the Microsoft Outlook Inbox Repair Tool (Scanpst.exe): This is a built-in tool provided by Microsoft to repair corrupted Outlook data files, including the ".MAI" file. The tool can be found in the Microsoft Office installation folder, usually located at "C:Program FilesMicrosoft OfficeOfficeXX". Run the tool and select the corrupted ".MAI" file to initiate the repair process.
    2. Use a specialized third-party Outlook repair tool: There are various third-party software tools available specifically designed to repair and recover corrupted Outlook data files. Some popular options include Stellar Repair for Outlook, Remo Repair Outlook, and DataNumen Outlook Repair. These tools often provide advanced scanning algorithms to fix the corruption and recover as much data as possible from the ".MAI" file.
    3. Restore from a backup: If you have a recent backup of your Outlook data files, including the ".MAI" file, you can restore it to replace the corrupted file. This method ensures that you have a clean and error-free version of the file.
    4. Contact Microsoft Support: If the above methods fail to repair the corrupted ".MAI" file, you can reach out to Microsoft Support for further assistance. They may provide additional guidance or advanced tools to help recover the data.

    Remember to always create a backup of your Outlook data files before attempting any repair process, as there is a possibility of data loss during the repair.

  • Are there any precautions or backup strategies to prevent the need for ".MAI" file repair in the future?

    Yes, there are several precautions and backup strategies you can implement to prevent the need for ".MAI" file repair in the future. Here are some suggestions:

    1. Regularly backup your files: Ensure you have a reliable backup system in place to regularly back up your ".MAI" files. This way, even if a file gets corrupted, you can easily restore it from a previous backup.
    2. Use reliable email clients: Choose a reputable and reliable email client that is known for its stability and robustness. This can minimize the chances of ".MAI" file corruption or damage.
    3. Keep your software up to date: Regularly update your email client and related software to the latest versions. Software updates often include bug fixes and security patches that can prevent file corruption issues.
    4. Avoid abrupt shutdowns: Properly exit your email client and avoid abrupt shutdowns of your computer. Abrupt shutdowns can increase the risk of file corruption.
    5. Use a reliable antivirus program: Install and regularly update a reliable antivirus program to protect your computer from malware and viruses. Malware can corrupt files, including ".MAI" files.
    6. Avoid exceeding file size limits: Some email clients have file size limits for attachments. Be mindful of these limits and avoid exceeding them, as it can lead to file corruption.
    7. Monitor disk space: Ensure you have enough free disk space on your computer. Running out of disk space can cause file corruption issues.
    8. Avoid opening suspicious email attachments: Be cautious while opening email attachments, especially from unknown or suspicious sources. Malicious attachments can cause file corruption.

    By following these precautions and backup strategies, you can reduce the chances of ".MAI" file corruption and minimize the need for repair in the future.

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