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System Restore Point removal


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16 replies to this topic

#1 dougkeeling

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 01:05 PM

I cannot run System restore--after selecting a restore point, the process stops and is unresponsive. I suspect that I have too many restore points (maybe 14), which is causing my problem. I know how to delete all of the restore points, but don't wish to remove them all. I have another problem which I think I can solve with a system restore at one of the existing restore points. Is there a procedure via which I can remove selected restore points?

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#2 bicycle bill

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 05:37 PM

You could remove all but the most recent.

Click Start, Run and type CLEANMGR and press Enter
Select the hard disk partition and press OK
At the top of the dialog, click the tab More Options
Under System Restore section, click the button "Clean up..."

#3 Stang777

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 05:39 PM

I do not believe that the problem is caused by having too many restore points and 14 is not that many. System Restore will remove the points as it gets too full. Have you tried just selecting other restore points?

You can remove individual restore points though by opening the System Volume Information folder that is located on the C drive, then opening the folder tittled restore (with some numbers in parenthesis) and selecting the restore point you want to delete and deleting it.

If you need help getting that folder to let you open it let me know, I can tell you how if necessary.

Edited by Stang777, 25 May 2009 - 05:50 PM.


#4 dougkeeling

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 05:59 PM

bicycle bill: Thanks for the timely response. I don't want to remove all but the last Restore Point, as I think I can solve my other problem by going back about one week. If I delete all but the most recent, I'll retain the other problem.

Stang777: I have seen reference to opening the System Volume Information folder, tried to accomplish that, but failed. Would it be asking too much for you to post a procedure which I might be able to follow?

In general: I may be a bit ahead of myself, as I am attempting to solve two problems--one is that System Restore will permit me to select a restore point (date), but then refuses to continue. I guess I was just assuming that the number of restore points had grown so large that System Restore would not run. So if I'm off on the wrong track, I apologize, but hope someone will correct me.

#5 JeffAST

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 06:13 PM

I use a program called TuneUp Utilities to delete all my old restore points. It can also clean up the registry, delete windows components like Windows Messenger, defrag the registry and hard drive, shutdown system processes, it can do all sorts to improve your system, if your farmilar with torrents you can download the full version here Link removed as using torrents can lead to infections. ~ OB

Edited by Orange Blossom, 22 June 2009 - 11:59 PM.


#6 Stang777

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 06:17 PM

It is not too much to ask at all and I will tell you how to do that but, like I said before, I do not believe that having too many restore points is your problem.

To make it so you can open that folder, you are going to have to set it up so that you have ownership of the folder. If you have XP Pro, you can do this in regular windows, if you have XP Home, you are going to have to do this in safe mode. I am going from memory here so I hope I am telling you all the steps, if something does not work, post back and let me know.

Right click on the System Volume Information folder and select properties, then click on the security tab (in the Home Edition you only have this security tab in safe mode) and check the box to give yourself permission to the folder. Be careful not to ever check any box for deny. Then click apply and restart Windows normally. At this point you should have full access to that folder.

I would like to know if you have tried using more than one restore point and what problem you are trying to fix by restoring the system.

#7 hillbillygreek

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 07:25 PM

Is there a procedure via which I can remove selected restore points?


You should probably avoid doing this. Take a look here >> Can I delete individual restore points from the system volume information folder?

Edited by hillbillygreek, 25 May 2009 - 07:31 PM.


#8 dougkeeling

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 07:44 PM

jeffAST: Tlhanks for the suggestion. I have used/am using several utilities that seem to do what they are advertised to do.

Stang777: I have tried quite a number of restore points. Two days ago, the System Restore program would run, but upon reboot, I received a cryptic message that none of my files had been altered, and system restore had not been applied. No reason was given. After several tries (different restore points), System Restore would only function to the point of of execution after having selected a restore point, and then refused the "Next" command. I tried this in Safe Mode, and Safe Mode Command Prompt with the same (non)results.

The "other problem" with which I was wrestling had to do with Windows Downloader, which suddenly (3 days ago) attempted to install Microsoft Money 2002 each time I clicked on Start, My Computer, Search, etc. I finally stumbled upon a Windows Downloader cleanup program from Microsoft, downloaded and ran it, and that problem seems to have departed. I dare not conduct a System Restore until I am sure that problem has gone away and I can establish a "clean" restore point. If that problem t has been cleaned up, then my immediate SR problem is easily solved--delete them all, as has been suggested above.

And finally, red of face, I must confess that I can't find the System Volume Information folder. If you will guide me to it, I'll see if I can selectively remove some of the older/newest restore points.

#9 Stang777

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 08:09 PM

I am sorry, I just assumed that you had hidden folders set to be shown.

You need to open up a folder, like the C drive, then on the toolbar, click on Tools, then select Folder Options, then click on the View tab. Under "Files and folders", check the box "Display the content of system folders" and under "Hidden files and folders", select "Show hidden files and folders" and uncheck the box that says "Hide protected operating system files". Click Apply and then click on yes, or ok, in the box that comes up saying something about the risks of setting the system to show you those files and asking if you are sure you want to do this.

If the info in the link that was provided in the post above your last one is correct, then you probably should not delete any, however, that info does not make sense to me as system restore routinely purges old restore points on a first in, first out, basis. If you look at the FIFO log in that folder, you will see how it has removed previous restore points. Since it routinely does that, I do not see how each restore point is dependent on the one before it, but that is just my way of thinking and I am not an expert.

I also see in that article the link above is posted for that just making it so you can access the System Volume Information folder will corrupt the files in it and make them unusable. I do not see why it would do this but be warned, the article does say that so if it is true, you might not be able to use the restore points currently in that folder after changing the permissions to access them in the folder.

Also, just in case you decide to download anything from the link that Jeff posted, please keep in mind that using torrents will often cause your system to become infected

Edited by Stang777, 25 May 2009 - 08:21 PM.


#10 Stang777

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 08:30 PM

Ok, I just reread your last post and am confused, if you are not wanting to do a System Restore until after you know the problem is gone and have a clean Restore Point, why are you trying to use the Restore Points now on your system?

Also, the system attempting to download that program sounds like you might have an infection on that system and you should NOT use any Restore Points currently on your system.

Have you ran any programs like Malwarebytes or SuperAntiSpyware?

Personally, if this were my system, I would not be trying to restore it to anything but the Restore Point created many days before this Money 2002 problem occured and if that did not work, I would run the programs I mentioned above and if all scans came back clean, I would purge all Restore Points, create a new one and continue on my way. If they did not come up clean, I would post in the Am I Infected section of this forum and let them help me clean up my system.

Actually, I would run those programs before even attempting to do a System Restore or do anything with the files in that folder.

The fact that you now cannot get System Restore to function properly is also a sign that you might be infected. Btw, since malware will often take out the System Restore function on a computer, SuperAntiSpyware does have a feature for repairing the System Restore program. I would only use that once you know your system is clean.

Also, please remember that there is no logical reason that removing a Restore Point is going to solve any of your problems. Also, even deleting them all might not return the System Restore program to a correctly functioning state.

Edited by Stang777, 25 May 2009 - 08:44 PM.


#11 dougkeeling

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 10:22 PM

Stang777: Sorry. Guess I didn't articulate as clearly as I thought. It is now becoming apparent that the Windows Downloader problem has been removed. Hence, the need for a System Restore has also been removed. My hesitation about clearing out all of my restore points was my uncertainty of the Windows Downloader solutionbeing firm.

As for a logical reason for removing restore points, I speculated that I had too many points stored, and had used all the available space for new restore points, and that was why my System Restore isn't working. May not be smart, but it does contain a hint of "logic." ;o)

Tomorrow, I'll attempt a System Restore, as I am convinced the Windows Installer Cleanup program has solved the Windows 2002 installation problem. I will report the results.

#12 dougkeeling

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 10:30 PM

Stang777: Following your lead, I re-read my own response and see that I didn't really explain why I was seeking an "older" restore point. Some of my existing Restore Points were established after I noticed the Money 2002 installation problem. I wanted to do a System Restore at a date earlier than the onset of the Money 2002 problem.

#13 dougkeeling

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 09:38 AM

This morning I again attempted to conduct a system restore, but I noticed that there had been no restore points established since 5/24 (after the Money 2002 problem was observed). So I attempted to establish a restore point. I received an error message that no restore point was created, and a suggestion that I reboot and try again. I did, with the same results. Then I followed earlier suggestions, removed all restore points, and successfully created a Restore Point! At this moment, it appears that both my problems have been solved, though my experience tells me that broken/failed devices/procedures seldom fix themselves. ;o) If acceptable, I'd like to keep this discussion open for maybe one more day to see if my System Restore really works. I will report tomorrow.

#14 Stang777

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Posted 27 May 2009 - 02:08 PM

I am glad that you got it working again and that probably did fix it. In a day or two try using the Restore Point that was made today just to make sure and let us know what happens.

This thread will be always be opened, they won't close it out.

Did you remove all the restore points by turning System Restore off and then turned it back on or did you remove all but the most recent using Disk Cleanup?

Edited by Stang777, 27 May 2009 - 02:11 PM.


#15 dougkeeling

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Posted 28 May 2009 - 03:24 PM

Final report: Stang777--I successfully conducted a System Restore. I feel confident that the problems reported above have been eliminated. To answer your final question, I removed the earlier restore points by turning System Restore off, rebooting, turning it back on, and rebooting as instructed.

I extend my most sincere thanks to everyone who contributed to my "recovery."




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