When I try to access Outlook rules I get the following message: Operation failed because of a registry or installation problem. Restart Outlook to try again. If problem persists reinstall.

I read that a KB update caused this issue( was working just fine until recently) and running an update should fix the issue. It hasn't. I ran scanpst across the five mail boxes - same issue. I tried the MS-office repair both offline and online - same issue.

In desperation, I upgraded from 2016 to 2019 (via change license) hoping it would resolve any registry corruption - wrong. Now using Version 1811 Build 11029.20108

I really don't want to uninstall Office and re-install as I have many custom settings and add-in, none of which affected rules until the update.

I would like to remove just Outlook and reinstall that --- but MS in its wisdom has removed the capability to uninstall individual packages within the office suite ....

Any advice or ideas on what to try next greatly appreciated.

1 Answer 1


According to the following Official article, this is a known issue still under investigation.

Outlook Error: "The operation failed..." when selecting Manage Rules & Alerts


The Outlook Team is investigating the issue.

As a workaround, you can manage rules in Outlook Web Access (OWA). If you use Outlook Web Access to edit the rules, please avoid running Manage Rules & Alerts... in Outlook or the error will return.

Warning: When you create, modify, remove, enable, or disable in Outlook Web App, some rules that are send rules and currently disabled rules will be deleted. If you need to preserve the client side rules please wait for the fix to be released."

You may check back the article above for further updates on the issue.

  • Thanks for the reply. I wasn't aware the issue still remains open, thought the latest update resolved. I don't think I can use OWA as the mail server is ISP hosted and not an Exchange variant thereon.
    – TonyN
    Dec 21, 2018 at 23:54

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