What exactly does System Restore do?

  stlucia2 11:43 AM 05 Aug 11

In trying to solve a problem on my PC (subject of another thread http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/forums/1/helproom/4060503/internet-explorer-script-errors-with-corel-videostudio/ ), Corel have advised me to do a System Restore. I went through the routine, picked a date which was marked as a restore date in the calendar, and let it do its job. After my PC had re-booted itself, it came up with an error message saying it couldn't restore to the date I'd chosen, so had left my PC unchanged.

Anyway, I've never used System Restore before, so I was wondering what it would have done if it had worked. Would it have deleted any software that I'd installed between the restore date and now, or any of the automatic Windows updates that have happened between then and now?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 11:54 AM 05 Aug 11

Click here for MS explanation

Restores your system files drivers etc. does not restore programs, documents, photos or other personal files.

The best way of ensuring everything is safe is to use imaging software to take a complete copy of your hard drive and save it to an external drive.

  stlucia2 12:23 PM 05 Aug 11

Thanks Fruit BAt ^0^. I already use Acronis to backup regularly onto an external HDD. I was just curious about what System Restore actually changes.

That MS article goes some way to explaining it, but it doesn't say exactly what it changes or deletes. It mentions programs and drivers as an example of what can go wrong. So, if I do a System Restore might I end up losing some drivers that came with a recently-installed program and, thus, making the program not work?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 12:33 PM 05 Aug 11


Any programs installed after the restore date may not work as their registry details will no longer be there (some programs are standalone and will not be affected).

Any drivers installed after the update will be lost as drivers arer rolled back to the restore date.

All updates installed after the restore date are lost.

Restore point dates available are in bold if it cant restore to one of those dates then that restore point is corrupt (some corrupt restore points can corrupt all of system restore so it will not work at all only recourse is to switch off system restore all restore points are deleted and reboot and switch it back on again).

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 12:36 PM 05 Aug 11

Corel have advised me to do a System Restore. I suspect they must think corel registry entries are corrupt.

I suggest you uninstall Corel clean the registry with CCleaners registry tool (safest one I know) reboot then reinstall Corel.

  Secret-Squirrel 13:55 PM 05 Aug 11

"After my PC had re-booted itself, it came up with an error message saying it couldn't restore to the date I'd chosen"

You'll stand a much better chance of success when you start the System Restore whilst in Windows's "Safe Mode".

If you don't know how to get into Safe Mode then turn the PC on and immediately start tapping the F8 key quickly till the boot choices menu appears (black screen with white text). Use the arrow keys on the keyboard to highlight the Safe Mode option then hit the Enter key to confirm your choice.

Best of luck.

  Woolwell 15:40 PM 05 Aug 11

To add to Fruit Bat /\0/\'s first post in that it does affect programs. It will in effect put your system back to as it was at the restore point. See System restore FAQ and expand what files are changed. A common misconception is that it restores documents, pictures, etc. It does not. A back up or system image will.

  stlucia2 19:59 PM 05 Aug 11

Thanks guys, that makes it much clearer.

As for my Corel problem, I've uninstalled and reinstalled the program a couple of times, and I use CC quite regularly, especially after uninstalls. In fact, I think the problem is not really with Corel VideoStudio, because it occurs only when it tries to display Corel Guide in a separate window on startup, or when I try to access Corel Guide from the program. The error messages refer to a Windows Script error.

I've now tried to restore to two different bold restore dates, and each time it's failed. Seems like I need to delete the restore points, as suggested.

  robin_x 20:24 PM 05 Aug 11

I found Sys Restore gave errors, but if I disabled AV Guard, it worked.

Your AV will start again on reboot.

(worked for me on a couple of occasions. I've always found Sys restore hit and miss. Waiting for further opportunities to test the theory)

  Secret-Squirrel 08:52 AM 06 Aug 11

"I found Sys Restore gave errors, but if I disabled AV Guard, it worked"

That doesn't surprise me as security programs are usually the worst offenders for interfering with System Restore. The Safe Mode tip I gave yesterday usually works for those situations.


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