Vista - System Restore Q&A
  1. How do I open System Restore?
  2. How do I open System Protection?
  3. What is System Restore?
  4. How does System Restore work?
  5. Can I undo the changes System Restore makes?
  6. Can System Restore setting be changed via the registry as they were in Windows XP?
  7. What files are changed during a system restore?
  8. How do I choose a restore point?
  9. How often are restore points created?
  10. How long are restore points saved?
  11. How do I create a restore point manually?
  12. How much hard disk space does System Restore require?
  13. How do I turn System Restore on or off?
  14. I have an earlier version of Windows on my computer, but when I switch between versions, my restore points disappear. Why?
  15. What if System Restore doesn't fix the problem?
  16. Are System monitored files safe if located in User Documents Folders?

How do I open System Restore?

Press WinKey + R to open the Run dialog box and type or paste rstrui.exe then press enter.

 

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How do I open System Protection?

Right click on Computer and select Properties then System Protection on the left.

 

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What is System Restore?

System Restore helps you restore your computer's system files to an earlier point in time.  It's a way to undo system changes to your computer without affecting your personal files, such as e-mail, documents, or photos.

 

Sometimes, the installation of a program or a driver can cause an unexpected change to your computer or cause Windows to behave unpredictably. Usually, uninstalling the program or driver corrects the problem. If uninstalling does not fix the problem, you can try restoring your computer's system to an earlier date when everything worked correctly.

 

System Restore uses a feature called System Protection to regularly create and save restore points on your computer. These restore points contain information about registry settings and other system information that Windows uses. You can also create restore points manually.

 

System Restore is not intended for backing up personal files, so it cannot help you recover a personal file that has been deleted or damaged. You should regularly back up your personal files and important data using a backup program.

 

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How does System Restore work?

System Restore uses restore points to return your system files and settings to an earlier point in time, without affecting personal files. For more information, see What is System Restore?

 

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Can I undo the changes System Restore makes?

Yes. Every time you use System Restore, a restore point is created before proceeding, so you can undo the changes if they don't fix your problem. If you use System Restore when the computer is in safe mode, you cannot undo the restore operation. However, you can run System Restore again and choose a different restore point if one exists.

 

To undo the changes System Restore makes

  1. Click to open System Restore.? If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
  2. Click Undo System Restore, and then click Next.
  3. Review your choices, and then click Finish.

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Can System Restore setting be changed via the registry as they were in Windows XP? Added 7/22/07

System Restore in Vista ignores registry keys at
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion\SystemRestore
Changes to these keys in Vista will have no effect on how System Restore functions.
These keys are there for backwards compatibility with some XP scripts.

 

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What files are changed during a system restore?

System Restore affects Windows system files, programs, and registry settings. It also can make changes to scripts, batch files, and other types of executable files on your computer. It does not affect personal files, such as e-mail, documents, or photos, so it cannot help you restore a deleted file. If you have backups of your files, you can restore the files from a backup.

 

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How do I choose a restore point?

 System Restore automatically recommends the most recent restore point created before a significant change, such as installing a program. You can also choose from a list of restore points. Try using restore points created just before the date and time you started noticing problems.

 

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How often are restore points created?

Restore points are created automatically every day, and just before significant system events, such as the installation of a program or device driver. You can also create a restore point manually.

 

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How long are restore points saved?

Restore points are saved until the hard disk space System Restore reserves is filled up. As new restore points are created, old ones are deleted. If you turn off System Protection (the feature that creates restore points) on a disk, all restore points are deleted from that disk. When you turn System Protection back on, new restore points are created.

 

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How do I create a restore point manually?

  1. Click to open System.
  2. In the left pane, click System Protection If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
  3. Click the System Protection tab, and then click Create.

In the System Protection dialog box, type a description, and then click Create.

 

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How much hard disk space does System Restore require?

To store restore points, you need at least 300 megabytes (MB) of free space on each hard disk that has System Protection turned on. System Restore might use up to 15 percent of the space on each disk. As the amount of space fills up with restore points, System Restore will delete older restore points to make room for new ones.

 

System Restore will not run on hard disks smaller than 1 gigabyte (GB).

 

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How do I turn System Restore on or off:

System Protection, the feature that creates restore points, is on by default. We recommend that you keep System Protection turned on for all hard disks that contain important files so that you can use System Restore if you need to.

 

To turn System Restore on or off

  1. Click to open System.
  2. In the left pane, click System Protection. If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
  3. To turn on System Protection for a hard disk, select the check box next to the disk, and then click OK.
    – or –
    To turn off System Protection for a hard disk, clear the check box next to the disk, and then click OK.

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I have an earlier version of Windows on my computer, but when I switch between versions, my restore points disappear. Why?

In this version of Windows, restore points are created differently and are not recognized by earlier versions of Windows. If you have a dual-boot configuration and you start an earlier version of Windows, the earlier version will delete any restore points created by this version of Windows. If you start this version of Windows, restore points will resume being created automatically.

 

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What if System Restore doesn't fix the problem?

If System Restore doesn't fix the problem, you can undo the restore operation or try choosing a different restore point. If System Restore does not display any restore points to choose from, make sure you have System Protection turned on and that you have at least 300 MB of free space left on your hard disk. For more information about fixing problems, see What to do if Windows won't start correctly.

 

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Are System monitored files safe if located in User Documents Folders?

Unlike the My Documents folder in Windows XP, System Restore in Vista does not exclude executable files in user Documents folders. One reason is because programs and drivers (or spyware) can be installed anywhere, not just under the C:\Program Files folder(s). Therefore, a specific set of files are restored on all volumes where system protection is enabled. On Windows Vista, this set of files is defined by monitored extensions outside of the Windows folder, and everything under the Windows folder.

 

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Friday, October 23, 2009

 

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