This article describes how to perform troubleshooting steps for issues that may occur when you try to use the System Restore tool in Windows XP.
If System Restore does not start, follow these steps:
- Run Windows Update to check for and to install any system updates. Visit the following Microsoft Web site to check for updates:
- If you are prompted, restart the computer.
- After the computer restarts, click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click System Tools, and then click System Restore.
This section is intended for advanced computer users. If you are not comfortable with advanced troubleshooting, you might want to ask someone for help or contact support. For information about how to do this, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
Method 1: Make sure that the System Restore service is runningTo do this, use one of the following methods:
- Look in Control Panel. To do this, follow these steps:
- Click Start, click Run, and then type compmgmt.msc in the Open box, and then press Enter.
- Expand Services, and then click
System Restore Services..
If the Status of System Restore Service is not Started, click Start on the toolbar to start it.
- Open a Command Prompt window. To do this, follow these steps:
- Click Start, click
Run, type CMD in the Open box, and then press Enter.
- Type Net Start at the command prompt to make sure that the System Restore Service is up and is running.
If the System Restore Service is not listed, type net start "System Restore Service", and then press Enter.
- Click Start, click
Method 2: Make sure that System Restore is enabled on the drives where you want System Restore enabledTo do this follow these steps:
- Click Start, right-click My Computer, and then click Properties.
- Click the System Restore tab.
- If the System Restore is enabled, the Status column of a drive will show Monitoring.
If not, you can clear to clear the Turn off System Restore on all drives, and then click OK to enable it.
Method 3: Make sure that you have sufficient disk space on all the drives where System Restore is enabledTo do this, follow these steps:
- To check for free disk space, click Start, click Run, type diskmgmt.msc and then press Enter. Look at each drive System Restore is monitoring for free space.
- If the free space on any partition system restore is monitoring falls lower than 50 MB, System Restore will suspend and remove all restore points to free disk space. You should have already received a low free disk space message by now. System Restore will resume monitoring when free disk space reaches 200 MB.
Note In most cases you do not have to have System Restore monitor Partitions/drives other than the one Windows is installed on. System Restore does not monitor data files.
Method 4: View the event logs to investigate System Restore service errorsTo do this, follow these steps:
- Click Start, click Run, type eventvwr.msc /s in the Open box, and then press Enter.
- Click the System category.
- Click the Source tab to sort by name, and then look for "sr" or "srservice." Double-click each of these services, and then evaluate the event description for any indication of the cause of the problem.
Method 5: Boot in safe mode and run the System Restore toolTo boot in safe mode follow these steps:
- Restart the computer. Immediately after the screen goes blank for the first time, or after the BIOS post ends, start taping the F8 key repeatedly. The Windows Advanced Options menu appears.
If the menu does not appear, restart the computer and try again.
- Select Safe Mode, and then press ENTER. As files load they will scroll down the screen.
Note Safe mode uses a minimal set of device drivers and services to start Windows. The default Microsoft VGA driver is used for display at 640 X480 resolution and in 16 colors.
- Log on to the Administrator account. If a password was never set, leave the password blank and press ENTER or click the green arrow.
- Click No in the safe mode information screen to start System Restore.
- Select Restore my computer to an earlier time, and then click Next to proceed to select a date with restore points available.
- Click Next to begin restoring the system to a previous state.
For additional information, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
287505 How the System Restore utility uses drive letters
283073 How to disable the System Restore Configuration user interface
295050 Information on System Restore and password restoration
283252 Non-administrator user is unable to start System Restore utility
322246 You cannot create a restore point with a HighPoint driver installed
299904 The System Restore utility may be suspended on a system drive even though there is enough disk space
300044 How the System Restore tool handles hard-disk space usage
301224 System Restore "restore points" are missing or deleted
304449 How to start the System Restore tool from a Command Prompt in Windows XP
313853 System Restore tool displays a blank calendar in Windows XP
Article ID: 302796 - Last Review: May 22, 2013 - Revision: 1
Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Microsoft Windows XP Professional