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Nurick

Riskty to delete any but oldest system restore points in XP Home?

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I still use Win XP-SP3 home. Awhile back I read (from a very reputable source, as I recall), that XP-Home restore point are only save system information that is incremental or changed vs. the previous point. (Although, come to think of it how could that be, if each point eventually becomes the oldest one as points drop away one-by-one, first-in-first-out?? Wouldn't that always render the oldest remiaining point incomplete?)

 

Anyway, assuming the idea of only-incremental updating is true, doesn't that mean it would always be risky to delete any but the oldest restore points? I.e. if you have occasion to use the 14th restore point to try to restore the system, but you've deleted points 11, 12 and 13 via CCleaner, wouldn't that keave restore point 14 with incomplete system information?

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I don't know the answers, however relying upon System Restore to undo some damage in WinXP isn't always successful, I've often seen it fail or make more of a mess than previously existed. Hence the reason to rely more upon a good disk imaging software.

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Totally false information, and No risk at all.

 

Each R.P. holds a FULL COMPLETE instance of the registry as at that POINT in time,

plus INCREMENTAL changes to "system files" since the PREVIOUS R.P.

 

When CCLeaner removes a Restore Point it surgically removes the FULL COMPLETE instance of the registry,

but preserves all the INCREMENTAL changes to "system files",

and applies a clever tweak to Windows so that (unless Windows is already broken) you can still restore to previous Restore Points.

 

When you restore to an earlier point in time then the INCREMENTAL changes to "system files" is applied in reverse to take the files back from the latest state.

 

This is my preferred tool for seeing any file that is anywhere, including the contents of "System Volume Information", which holds your Restore Points.

https://www.jam-soft....80&language=EN

 

N.B.

I fully endorse Andavari's response.

 

Personally I have fully disabled System Restore because it is a waste of Disk space and Processor cycles.

I depend upon Macrium Reflect partition image backup software - it works and is fast.

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Very helpful explanation, Alan_B. Thanks! I do have to say that depending on a "clever little tweak" makes me a tad nervous, although I assume CCleaner tested it carefully before adding the function? Is the tweak readily explainable? Or perhaps proprietary? Also, could you expand a bit on what "unless Windows is already broken" means? Do you mean to a point where System Restore wouldn't even function (or is infected)?

 

While I definitely agree with both of you that XP's System Restore is often ineffective and quirky, and in some cases create more problems than it solves, it has really hugely saved the day for me in more than a few instances. Those particular rescues have definitely outweighed the headaches it's caused other times. Ironically, several of the times SR did a big rescue for me it deleted all restore points in the process -- kind of like knocking down the bridge as soon as I got across it (which means no "undo" option had I decided I really wanted to be back on the other side).

 

In retrospect I wish I knew whether any of the major "rescues" were using points that post-dated points I had deleted via CCleaner, just to reinforce the comfort level. I do use imaging software as well, but create images only about once a month.

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The "clever tweak" does what I said, but I do not know the proprietary details of how it is done.

 

There are many ways in which Windows has broken itself,

but using CCleaner to remove R.P. is not one of the ways - if System Restore would have worked before removing an R.P. it will still work afterwards.

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