Thursday, November 07, 2013

System Restore in XP

I`m using a Dell desktop machine loaded with Windows XP with latest service packs and virus definitions. I had earlier used Windows 2000 and am not familiar with Windows XP. My friends keep talking of a feature available in Windows XP called system restore. Please explain what it is and in which context it could be useful.

System Restore is a new feature in Windows XP. This is useful to restore the computer to an earlier state, before a system or application crash, without losing the data that was created before the crash and after the restoration point. To put it more simply: Imagine there is a change in the application or system, say some new drivers installed. We have saved some data after the change. At some point of time, we face some problem in the computer's functionality due to this new application or system change. We want to go back to the earlier state and also need the data. This is possible through system restore.
System Restore can be opened from Start -{gt} Programs -{gt} Accessories -{gt} System Tools -{gt} System Restore.
As one opens it, the system will prompt the user whether to Restore to an earlier point or create a Restore Point.
The system will monitor the system and application files. It identifies the changes made and creates a system restore point. By default, it will be created daily and at the time of new driver installation or application configuration changes. When we create a system restore point, it will prompt for a description to be given. We can give a suitable description so that it will be useful at some later date to identify the status of the computer. It can be before a new application installation and changes made to the existing one. This description is displayed when we do a restore to an earlier point.
By default, Windows XP installation will enable system restore in all the disk partitions. In each partition, a maximum of 12 per cent of its size is set for System restore. Selecting the System Restore Settings in the System Restore GUI can change this. System restore can be turned off in selected drives or on all the drives. But it is not recommended to do so.