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How to Fix Issues on Windows 7 with System Restore

System Restore in Windows is a God given tool (if you believe in God otherwise a fruit of a genius thoughtful masterminded developers). Windows 7 has further bettered their work on System Restore functionality, it is brilliantly useful especially when you have upgraded to a new operating system. It is useful when you have download new software’s and this software is not willing to work well with your operating system and this is when System Restore steps in.

Set it up

Of course you have to initially set the restore point for your Windows 7 to refer to as a point where your computer was functioning well and giving you no or least dramas. At the crunch time you can use the restore point and set all things right and can be achieved in these few easy steps:

  • Using the run command type msconfig and press enter. This will open a window where you have to click on the last tab called Tools.
  • Under the tools tab there will be list of function, so scroll down to find System Restore. Once you highlight System Restore, click on the Launch button, at the bottom right hand corner of the main window.
  • This will open a System Restore wizard and the first page introduces you the the wizard and gives a brief description of the activity, once you finished reading the description click Next.
  • Here you will be given a list of times and dates, which the system thinks was the good time, you could choose any date that you can closely remember when you computer worked well, or else to see more dates click on “show more restore points”. Once you made your choice click Next.
  • On the next page if you are certain about the date you have chosen, Click Finish or else go back and choose another date and return. Once you click on Finish you will be prompted to restart you computer, say Yes or OK and go ahead with the restart.


Once you have restarted your computer, your system will be set to the settings how it was the date you mentioned as your restore point. Any software’s or programs downloaded or files saved will be removed. So make sure you have a backup of any      important files you have made or saved between the date and time you set the restore and current time.

When all fails

System restores is a saviour even when a malicious virus or spyware has attacked your computer and neither your anti-virus software nor your anti-spyware is of any help. The solution then is System Restore to the point where your computer was functioning properly.

Backup and restore works hand in hand, since if you have backed up all your files to an external or a network drive, you can be assured of restoring the files back even when you have done a System Restore.  Therefore it is recommended that you use backup functionality as soon as you have your computer up and running.

How to Disable System Restore in Windows 7

System restore is one of the finest advancement in Windows 7. Since Windows 7 is a new technology it might suffer with bugs and crashes. System restore as the name suggests is the restoring system of your computer. It involves the reinstallation of soft ware’s, updates and various drivers in your computer. It brings back all the files and data stored back to your computer and makes it run in the same way as it was prior to any crash. It is best to use Windows backup with system restore in order to safeguard your computer.  By using Windows backup with system restore you actually protect all the data along with all your e- mails and programs files of your computer. So if you are planning to disable the system restore in Windows 7, that may not be a good idea.

The only good enough reason to disable your system restore in Windows 7 is that by disabling system restore you can remove the virus in your computer. Therefore, just in case you feel like taking this step forward here is the follow up you need to perform.

Once you turn on your computer, you will have to click on the start option on your taskbar. Thereafter, go to computer’s option and right click on that. A separate window will appear on your desktop, choose the system protection option from this window.

As soon as you click on the system protection option a separate window titled system properties will appear. In this window an option of configure will be provided .the next step after clicking on the system protection option is to then click on the configure option which can be seen on the window of system protection.

Soon after clicking on the configure option a window named system protection for local disc will appear where you just have to choose the option of turning off the system protection. However, it is strongly recommended not to turn off the system protection the system may subject to protection risk due to this action. As soon as you switch off the restore system, you automatically take a risk of losing your data, files, and other various documents and soft ware’s.

In case it becomes a necessity to turn off your restore system in Windows, 7 for any purpose don’t forget to turn it on. After disabling the restore system, once the virus is removed from your computer, it is recommended to enable the restoring system to keep your files, documents, programs and other software’s safe. To enable the restore system same steps should be repeated but this time you should remove the check from disable the system restore. Once you complete the procedure of either disabling or enabling the procedure kindly restart your computer to ensure the working of your computer properly.

How to Create System Image and Restore in Windows 7

Windows 7 has even simplified the process of creating a system image and restoring backed up files. This is a primary and important function you need to do as soon as a new Windows 7 has been installed on your computer. Since it not only saves you money when you computer unexpected crashes but also helps  you from not loosing the most important files.

System Image

What system image does is create a duplicate copy of your entire computer system in a specific drive of your choice. The system image has all the necessary drives, like system settings, programs and files that is necessary for you to run Windows on your PC or laptop. Therefore by saving a copy of your system through system image on a drive, you can use it anytime when the hard disk or your computer crashes or stops working.

Creating an image

From the Control Panel choose System and Maintenance, from here select the Backup and Restore option. On the left hand corner of the Backup and Restore window, choose the highlighted link ‘Create a system image’, this will bring up a new wizard window and then follow these steps:

  • Begin by choosing how and where you want the system image to create and save a new image.  You can choose between an internal/external drive on a DVD or even your local area network server. Once you choose the drive, click Next.
  • Now select the drives in your computer to be imaged, and click Next.
  • On this confirmation screen, it will tell you the total space it will occupy in the target drive, ensure your target drive has enough space for the image. Click Next
  • This will begin the process and could take between 20-45 mins depending on the total image size.  Once the process is complete a pop-up box allows you to choose if you would like to also create a system repair disc. I would recommend you say YES, unless you had already chosen to create the image on a DVD rather than a internal or network drive.


In any case your system crashes you can restore your Windows by either inserting the System Repair disc or restoring your files back from the system image created on the external /internal drive or Network server where it has been saved.

You can also restore the backed up files, which was used to backup files of your choice. Backup works similar to System imagine, but it is primarily to backup files that you have saved on your computer and can set it to periodically backup files and application as a scheduled time. This is especially handy if you have accidently deleted an important file, then go the backup folder and choose the file and restore it back to your desktop or folder.

System Image is life saving feature, and ensure you do this as the first step after having your Windows 7 setup and all application installed.  Restore function complements both system image and  backup functionality in windows 7.

How to Restore Windows XP to a Previous State

System restore utility in Windows XP works by taking snapshots of crucial system files, program files and registry settings and storing this information as restore points. If for some reason the computer is not working properly, the system can be reset to a previous state using these restore points, at which the system still functioned normally. Although a system restore could change some scripts, batch files and other types of EXE files, complete uninstallation of programs are not possible via system restoration.

Personal Files are not Affected

Its much more easier to understand the process of system restoration by exploring what exactly does it NOT do. For example restoring the system using System restore does not affect personal files and folders. Any changes made to files such as Word documents, e-mails, drawings, browsing history, downloaded files and favorites are all excluded from the reset of a System Restore.

On the same breath, deleted files cannot be recovered by a System Restore. The only hope for a deleted file is an appropriate back up of the same file. System restore of Windows XP and other Windows versions work with certain system files and registry files only.

System restore methods

System restore in Windows XP can be initiated from within the accessories menu as well as via the command prompt. ‘System restore’ option is found within ‘System tools’ under ‘Accessories’ in ‘Program Files’ pull out menu , which can be accessed by pressing the ‘Start’ button in Windows XP. then the user will be prompted with a calendar page that displays available most recent restore points. Rest of the procedure is as simple as just selecting the restore point from the list and clicking few links.

System restore can also be done via the command line interface in Windows XP. To access the command prompt all it takes is to press ‘Start’; ‘Run’ and enter ‘cmd’ in the dialog box. However the actual operation of a system restore in command prompt is suitable only for advanced users, since the execution of system restore commands in normal GUI interface of Windows XP is not only much more straightforward but also saves from lot of hassles.

Reverse A System Restoration

A system restoration may need to be reversed for various reasons. For example if the system has been restored to a system configuration on the contrary to what the user actually requires, unintentionally perhaps, the process may need to be reversed. In this case a reverse of the last system restore is possible via the same menu options. This will reverse only whatever the configuration changes effected by the particular system restore.

Windows XP’s system restore utility is a quite useful tool in case of remedying minor system problems and instability issues. However using system restore tools quite often and as a first line of troubleshooting process for each and every system issue can actually backfire and possibly create instability problems within the system. So system restore in Windows XP has to be used only at crucial situations according to the issue in hand.

How to Use System Restore in Order to Log on to Your Windows 7 or Vista

There can be instances where you are not able to log on to your Windows 7 or Windows Vista. You can use the System Restore feature in either of the Windows to log in.


There might be a number of scenarios where you will not be able to log into your Windows Vista or Windows 7. Either you have set a new password to protect your system from being logged on by anyone, and you forgot the new password or you have been giving the right password but you are not able to log on because of a system corruption issue.  It is also possible that you have deleted one of the main administrator accounts and the system is not letting you in with the other administrator account. There is one more case where you can have this problem. You might have changed one of the administrator accounts to a standard user and the system is not allowing you to access your other administrator account.

System Restore feature to log on

While you wish to log in to your Windows once you cannot log in to the administrator account in every possible way then you need to follow the instructions written below. You need to have a successful logon Restore point to do this:

  • Insert the DVD from which you installed your Windows Vista or Windows 7.
  • Restart the computer and boot the CD.
  • Change the basic preferences to your choice and the click Next to move on to the next step.
  • Choose Repair your computer option instead of installing a new copy.
  • Select the operating system and class  that you wish to repair. Click next to move ahead.
  • Click System Restore on the next step and then click Next again.
  • Select the Restore point of your choice and move ahead by clicking Next. This would get your computer to the previous successful logon Restore Point. You need to reinstall all the programs and updates that have been removed but you will not lose your personal files.
  • Once you are done with the restoration, click Next and then Finish. Click Yes if you are prompted after the Finish.
  • This is the end to System Restore process; you can now press the Restart button to Restart your computer.
  • When your computer is going to restart, it is going to prompt you with the success of System Restore process. Click Close to confirm.
  • You can then try and log on using all the normal modes that used to work at the first place. It might be logging on using the previous passwords or other user accounts

Changes post the System Restore process

You need to ensure a few more steps to make sure that the restore is complete and would not turn back. Try all the following steps:

  • Once you log on successfully, change your passwords and then restart and log on using the new password to make sure that it is working properly.
  • Check all the different users that are present on your computer just to make sure that every user can log on successfully. You can change the password of the user that cannot log on through the administrator user.
  • Create a new password protected user account and log in through the new administrator account. Delete the restored administrator account through this new administrator account. Do not use the restored user account for long as this could be dangerous again.

How to start the System Restore tool in safe Mode on Windows XP

If your Windows XP system starts acting strange, a typical fix is to use System Restore to remove any system changes made since the last time you created a Restore Point. System Restore is a tool that automatically monitors and records any changes that are made to the core Windows system files and to the registry. If any change causes your system to become unstable, System Restore can roll back the system to a point in time when your computer was known to function correctly.

For System Restore to work it is important that you have previous Restore Points on your computer. If you do not have Restore Points then it wouldn’t be possible for you to Rollback the computer to any previous date.

How to start system restore?

Typically System restore can be access by going to Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System tools -> System restore, but what if the situation is so bad that the Graphical Interface of XP is not even loading up and you are not reaching the desktop to work upon. In such cases you mat try booting the system in Safe Mode with Command prompt and execute the System Restore utility. Steps for doing the same ate given below:

  1. Start the computer and start tapping the F8 key. This will give you a list of Advance Boot up options and you need to select “Safe Mode with Command Prompt”.
  2. Login as Administrator when prompted.
  3. Once you reach the Command Prompt execute the following command:%systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui.exe

This will initiate the System Restore utility and further just follow the instructions over there to roll back your computer to an earlier date.

Some other facts about System restore.

How to Enable/Disable system Restore?

Open the System window by going to Control Panel and opening System. In the System window click on the System Restore tab. On this tab there is a checkbox for Turning ON or OFF the System Restore.

How to create Restore Points?

Open the System Restore Window from Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System tools -> System restore. Select “Create a Restore Point”.

What all is restored by System Restore?

System Restore keeps track of the following and this is what gets restored when we restore the computer to an earlier date:1. Windows Registry2. Local Profiles3. COM + DB4. WFP.DLL Cache5. WMI DB6. IIS Metabase

What is not restored by System Restore?

  1. DRM Settings
  2. Passwords in SAM Hive
  3. WPA Settings
  4. User created files
  5. Items listed in the following keys in the Registry
  • HKLM\System\Controlset001\Control\Backuprestore\Filesnottobackup
  • HKLM\System\Controlset001\Control\Backuprestore\Keysnottorestore

6. Contents of Redirected folders



How to control the disk space used by System Restore?

Open the System window by going to Control Panel and opening System. In the System window click on the System Restore tab. select the drive and click on settings. There you will get a slider to set the size allocated to system restore for keeping the restore files.

Can System Restore be used in place of Windows Backup Utility?

System Restore only monitors specific system and application files. It does not backup personal data. Restore Points are only keptfor 90 days by Windows and then automatically deleted by default. Windows Backup Utility on the other hand is a permanent backup tool that backs up all of your system and personal files on your system. It gives you ability to save this backup copy to a local disk or to a separate form of media where it can be drawn from at any time.

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