Thank Bill for System Restore

Windows XP System Restore got me up and running tonight.  Thank Bill it was there.

I think it all started this morning when I loaned my laptop to Reed.  (Gotta blame somebody.)  Things literally just stopped working all over the place.  Networking stopped working (both my broadband wireless card and my regular WiFi card).  Then I couldn't open up any menu items.  I mean things just went in the toilet really quickly.

I booted into Safe Mode with Networking (so my domain ID would work).  Then I selected Accessories -> System Tools -> System Restore.  It rebooted, restored, and rebooted again.  Next thing I know, everything's beautiful. 

If you're running Windows, you should be familiar with System Restore.  If you're not, you might want to get a copy of my book . Wink

----- Signature and Disclaimer -----

Written by W. Curtis Preston (@wcpreston). For those of you unfamiliar with my work, I've specialized in backup & recovery since 1993. I've written the O'Reilly books on backup and have worked with a number of native and commercial tools. I am now Chief Technical Architect at Druva, the leading provider of cloud-based data protection and data management tools for endpoints, infrastructure, and cloud applications. These posts reflect my own opinion and are not necessarily the opinion of my employer.

5 thoughts on “Thank Bill for System Restore

  1. grammar says:

    Cut Reed a break, it’s not his fault Windows still fails catastrophically when any application touches its memory footprint (which should be protected from the user level like every other current OS and several dead ones, but ain’t).

    Also, buy a Mac. I have problems like the ones you describe here *only* with the laptops employers hand me. My friends have them with their home computers running Windows, even my Very Savvy friends. I do not have these problems with any of the Macs I use interactively at home regularly.

  2. cpreston says:

    First, the point of the post was to tell people to learn about Windows System Restore, and to show you that it actually helps.

    Second, the Reed thing was tongue in cheek, dude. He’s my bestest buddy, even if he won’t get certified as a diver so I can have somebody to go hunting lobster with.

    Third, I’m not going to get into the MAC vs. Windows debate (that’s been done to death), but I will tell you that I have almost as many issues with Apple as I do with Microsoft. Quick list? Sure. 1. Apple suing MusicMatch (a FAR superior program to iTunes) so that I can’t sync my iPod with it. 2. DRM. DRM. DRM. (They’re both guilty of it) 3. Releasing an operating system without proper backup tools (read my MacOS chapter about the history of backup tools in MacOSX.) NTbackup wasn’t/isn’t perfect, but at least it backed up all the files on a Windows box. 4. Not covering the LCD on my iPod in the warranty, and charging me almost the price of the iPod to repair it.

    OK. I feel better now.

  3. grammar says:

    I was, likewise, teasing. (I can’t say “buy a mac” to JWZ any more: he already did.) I haven’t, in fact, picked up your recently updated book, but I guess I’m confused what you mean when you suggest there’s no backup tool there. It ships with pax(1) and tar(1), like any other BSD with the standard base system installed (although, if memory serves, both are lacking in the Darin 9.x builds, aka the iPhone). What do you want, a GUI?

    I should, actually, have noted that I also think MS’s volume shadow copy business (on which XP’s System Restore is based, right? I only touch XP on employer-issued laptops, I don’t even do restores for it) is very well-implemented, better than some Unix vendors’ in house volume management.

  4. cpreston says:

    When MacOSX first shipped, the backup tools were broken, specifically, they didn’t properly handle Apple file permissions and the stream data. They do NOW, but they didn’t. That’s why a bunch of third party versions popped up.

  5. ddierickx says:

    I’m not a big fan of windows either, but the fact is that it wont be going away soon.

    In the past we have aal been pulling our hair out trying to figure out how to get working backup and restores.

    Anything they add, included in the OS! is a good thing. (it doesn’t make me like it more, though)

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