Windows XP System Restore Explained
System Restore in Windows XP is a built in feature that can help you restore your computer to an earlier healthy state if your computer operating system fails, or experience a major problem. System Restore uses a previous backup of your computer called restore point to bring your computer back to a working state without a need to reinstall the operating system. Data on the computer is not lost when you use System Restore.
The restore points are automatic snapshots of your computer setup taken before major changes or modifications to your computer. System Restore tracks your computer for major changes like installation of drivers, Windows automatic updates, and installation of new applications. A healthy state of your computer before these major changes is taken (restore point) so it can be used to bring your system to a working state if something goes wrong with the new installation.
Disk Space Required for System Restore
Your computer requires a minimum of 200mb hard disk space to use System Restore. The space is used to store the working snapshots of your computer – restore point. Restore points use the 200mb space until it is full, and after that, the space is overwritten with new restore points starting with the oldest.
It is highly recommended that you increase the hard disk space available to System Restore to ensure optimum protection for your computer. The minimum requirement of 200mb is not a lot of space. If available free disk space is less than 200mb, System Restore will automatically disable until the minimum amount of free space becomes available on your computer.
How to Allocate More Space for System Restore
1) Click Start
2) Click Control
3) Click System
4) In System Properties dialog box, Click System Restore tab as shown below:
5) On the System Restore dialog box, Click on Settings to open the dialog box below
6) Click on the slider and move it to the right to increase the amount of disk space available to System Restore, then Click OK. It is recommended to use the maximum amount of disk space available to System Restore by moving the slider to Max. The slide may already be at the Max level.
7) System Restore cannot use more than 12% of free space on your computer hard drive. The more free space you have on your computer the more you can allocate for System Restore.
8) Running Disk Cleanup utility may reclaim additional free space on your computer, and this will increase the hard disk space available to System Restore.
How to use Disk Cleanup utility
1) Click on Start; Click All Programs, Click Accessories, Click System Tools, then Click Disk Cleanup
2) Use the drop down arrow to select a drive in the Select Drive dialog box, Click OK.
3) Disk Clean utility will calculate the amount of free space that can be recovered and when complete, the Disk Cleanup dialog box will open.
4) Check the boxes on files to delete, and Click OK.
If your system suffer a major problem, Windows XP System Restore can save you a lot of time and money required to get your computer back to a heathy and working state . It is a built in feature in Windows XP, so it is free, and is easy to use. Why not start using it today. See our post on how to use System Restore.