Microsoft Outlook Encountered A Problem And Needs To Close

Sometimes Microsoft Office Outlook shows an error message saying it encountered a problem and needs to close. It does not provide any additional information, making it harder to fix the issue.

Microsoft Office Outlook Encountered A Problem And Needs To Close

outlook encountered a problem and needs to close

The article talks about possible causes of the problem and how to fix it.

Cumulative Update For Microsoft Outlook

Most of the times, a small change in code may help prevent and fix the problem when Microsoft Outlook crashes frequently. To update Microsoft Outlook, go to the Control Panel and open Windows Updates. Click on Check For Updates in the left column. After it checks for updates, click Optional Updates and see if any update for Microsoft Outlook is available. If yes, select it and click OK. Then click on Install Updates for updating the Microsoft Outlook you have on your computer.

Alternatively, you can check the Microsoft website for cumulative updates.

After installing the updates, turn on Microsoft Outlook to see if the problem is gone. If not, you may want to remove unwanted registry entries they may be the cause for Outlook crashing.

Clean Your Outlook Profile

To clean your Outlook profile:

  1. Close Microsoft Outlook if it is open
  2. Press Windows Key + R to open the Run dialog box
  3. In the Run dialog, type Outlook /cleanprofile
  4. Click OK or press Enter.

Start Microsoft Outlook and see if the problem is solved. If not, you will need to see if any add-ons are creating the problem.

Start Outlook in Safe Mode

  1. Close Microsoft if it is open
  2. Press Windows Key + R to open Run Dialog box
  3. In Run Dialog box, type Outlook /safe
  4. This will start Outlook in safe mode where any third party add-ons are disabled.
  5. Check and see if your Microsoft Outlook is working properly

If MS Outlook works properly in safe mode, it means some add-on is creating causing Outlook to close. Now you need to isolate and remove the add-ons that might be causing Outlook to crash. To do this:

  1. Open the File menu or Office menu.
  2. Click on options
  3. Click Add-ins
  4. Towards the bottom of the window you are presented with, select COM and click Go.
  5. You will be now presented with a list of add-ons in Microsoft Outlook
  6. Disable all add-ons (remove the check mark).
  7. Enable one add on at a time (check the checkbox against each one, one at a time) and run Microsoft Outlook to see if works properly

This explains how to fix it when you get a message saying Outlook has encountered a problem and needs to close.

If you still face the problem after performing the above steps, please leave a note below mentioning your version of MS Outlook and Windows so that we can assist you in troubleshooting.

Posted by on , in Category Office with Tags
Arun Kumar is a Microsoft MVP alumnus, obsessed with technology, especially the Internet. He deals with the multimedia content needs of training and corporate houses. Follow him on Twitter @PowercutIN


  1. RJW

    i have windows 7 and officeXP professional. keep getting Outlook has encountered a problem and needs to close.

  2. Thosredd

    I am running windows 8.1 and Outlook 2013. The above still does not work.

  3. Ranjeet Raushan

    I applied following steps. Now Outlook is running properly…

    Thanks for this information…

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