Welcome to our step by step instructions on System Restore in Windows 8/8.1.
For other OS specific step by step instructions please see:
For a general overview of Windows System Restore Feature:
Windows 8 operating system has introduced a new recovery tool Windows Recovery Environment-other recovery tools are same as they were in the previous versions like the system restore.
System restore is a helpful function available in Windows, which allows you to revert your computer’s software to its previous state. This tool can help us when problems start occurring in the updated software. In order to rectify those problems, you can use this feature so the computer starts functioning normally again.
The system restore operates in such a way that it uses restore points. Restore points are accumulated system files, stored by this tool on a specific date and time. Only the significant and integral files are saved, not your personal files such as pictures, videos or notes etc.
These points can be created by default or you can choose to create them yourself. The system sometimes can also create restore points automatically when a major change like Windows update, new device driver or app installation takes place. On Windows 8 storage space requirement for restore points can range from 1% to 100% of the hard drive.
How to Enable System Restore in Windows 8/8.1- Step by Step Guide
- Step 1: Boot your Windows 8. In order to do this, restart your computer and press F8. Select ‘repair your computer’ from the list and then navigate through the choices.
If you’re unable to boot you can take help of ‘download restore disk’.
- Step 2: Once rebooted, check whether System Restore is enabled or disabled. For many users, System Restore protection is turned on by default for your main system drive (C:) and not other drives on your computer. For other users, System Restore is not enabled by default for any of the drives.
If you want the protection that System Restore provides, you should enable it for at least your system drive. Most things that System Restore protects are located on the system drive. However, if you have programs installed on a different drive, you can turn on System Protection for those drives too.
To enable system restore follow the following steps:
- Step 3: Click Start button
- Step 4: In the search bar type in ‘system protection’
- Step 5: Select the first option “create restore point” from the list of options available
System Properties box will appear.
- Step 6: From the different tab options available select the “System Protection Tab”
- Step 7: Under the ‘Protection Settings’ heading you’ll find the ‘Available devices and their Protection Status’ either on or off.
- Step 8: To turn on protection for the available devices, Click “Configure”.
- Step 9: “System Protection for Storage” dialog box will open.
- Step 10: Select the first option “Turn on system protection” under the Restore settings heading.
- Step 11: Set “Max Usage” according to your need – this will determine the percentage of hard drive space that will be used for restore point
- Step 12: Click OK
- Step 13: Click OK once more to exit the “System Properties” dialog box
You can also enable system protection through control panel
- Step 1: Go to system and security
- Step 2: Select system
- Step 3: From the options available on the left click system protection
- Step 4: After opening the system protection tab, you can follow normal procedure of enabling system restore.
How to Restore a System Restore Point in Windows 8/8.1-Step by Step Guide
If the user wants to create restore points manually before making any major system change they can do so by following the below explained procedure.
TO CREATE A RESTORE POINT
- Step 1: Click on the Start button
- Step 2: In the search bar type in ‘system protection’.
- Step 3: Select the first option “create restore point” from the list of options available.
- Step 4: “System Protection for Storage” dialog box will appear.
- Step 5: Select the first option “Turn on system protection” under the Restore settings heading.
- Step 6: Click on the Create button
- Step 7: In the box that appears, type details of your restore point. After detail completion click “Create”
- Step 8: Restore point creation will take about 30 seconds. A box appears when it is finish. Click on Close.
TO PERFORM SYSTEM RESTORE.
- Step 1: Click on the Start option.
- Step 2: In the search bar, type ‘restore’. Select the first option “create restore point” from the list of options available.
- Step 3: System Properties box will open. From the different tab options available select the “System Protection Tab”
- Step 4: Click ‘System Restore’ which happens to be under the system restore heading
- Step 5: A dialog box of System Restore Wizard will open which gives details about the process- Restore Systems Files and Settings. Click ‘Next’.
- Step 6: Once you have clicked ‘Next’, another dialog box will appear which shows the restore points, the ones which were created automatically.
- Select “show more restore points”, this will show you the resort points created automatically before an application was installed or restore points that were created manually.
- Select the restore point of your choice.
- Click “Scan for affected programs”- it is important you go through list of programs that have been affected.
- Step 7: A dialog box having two list will appear, the first one shows programs and drivers that will be deleted the second one shows programs and driver that might get restored. Click ‘close’.
- Step 8: Select restore points from the list provided. Click ‘next’.
- Step 9: For confirmation of the selected restore point, a box will open. Click ‘finish’.
- Step 10: A dialog box will inform you that once the process has started, it cannot be disturbed. Click on ‘yes’ for the process to start.
The process will commence after the Windows restart the PC. System Restore may take about 15 minutes or more-but after the process it will start from the last working state.
A message on the screen will be seen until the process is completed.
- Step 11: A confirmation message will pop up once the process is completed. Click ‘close’.
NOTE: The System Restore makes a new restore point before it starts the process. This means you can undo your changes the same way as explained away by just selecting the new restore point.
As mentioned above, system restore will restore system files, drivers, registry settings, and the installed software. Some programs like antivirus tool may not work as well they should, or at all, after the restoration. As you can see, Windows will list all the affected programs. Take a look at the list so you know which programs will be affected during the process.