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Windows 7: Windows Update History Empty After WindowsImageBackup Restored


18 Mar 2012   #11

Windows 7 Pro 32-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Hopalong X View Post
I ran the Trouble shooter. Click the "Troubleshoot problems installing updates".
A new pop up appears and you click Troubleshoot.
This reset the history page while using the troubleshooter.
It may not reset it eveytime I don't know but it has reset when others have run the troubleshooter.




Also this is Brinks tutorial.> Windows Update - Reset

It uses a .bat file.
I could be mistaken, but this appears to reset the Windows Update history to zero rather than restoring the previous update history, which appears to be totally lost after doing a VSS-based IN WINDOWS backup. So for those of us wishing to restore the full Windows Update history, this does not appear to be the solution. (Similarly, the .bat process mentioned above also does not appear to restore the previous full history lost after a VSS-based IN WINDOWS backup.) At present, the only way to avoid losing the update history is to use a a VSS-based utility (Macrium) that has a built-in compensation for the VSS limitation, or a WinPE or Linux disk to do the backup, because it operates sub-Windows, and therefore grabs ALL system files with no exceptions the way VSS IN WINDOWS does.)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Mar 2012   #12

Windows 7 Pro 32-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by writhziden View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Hopalong X View Post
Possibly Windows update reset. It is just a history page. Maybe just a glitch that did the reset of the history page.
To delete an update you have to go to the one I marked #2.

When I did a reset of Win update on mine all the updates disappeared as did yours from the history list/window.
As I installed new updates all the new ones are listed on both pages.

That is the best I can describe it for you.
Niemiro could explain it with more detail.

So it isn't a problem all the updates are still there.
Mike

It is possible that Win Back up does not include that history page in the back-up. So it would be blank when reimaged.

Macrium makes an exact copy of everything so the history page is included.
Macrium does not seem to make an exact copy. The restore points, hibernation file, and pagefile are left out on purpose. There is an option to include them by imaging the whole drive, but I am fine with losing restore points if my backup preserves a stable system state.

WindowsImageBackup also deletes restore points and such. I was just surprised that it clears the update history page. I am pretty sure it does clear it because I have used it on two separate machines with the same results.

Curious: How did you reset the windows update?

Edit: Instead of saying that the backup clears the history, I should say that it does not back it up.
I'm not sure about Macrium specifics, because I use Paragon. But in Paragon, and I think in Macrium as well, there's an option to either include ALL windows files, like hibernation and pagefile, or not include them. The advantage of not including them means that the backups are smaller, since pagefile and hibernation are basically useless empty space as far as backups go. OTHER Windows files, however, are another matter. And that's where the problems come in with any system image backup program, run in Windows, that don't compensate for the "other" missing files. This is currently a problem with Paragon, but it's being looked into by tech support.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Mar 2012   #13
FSL

Windows 2008 R2 SP1, Windows 2000 Server SP4
 
 

Firstly, thanks to writhziden for reply and rep. I tried to send you a PM but the system wouldn't let me.

Secondly, in response to skbaltimore - I am sorry but I must disagree with you. If you reread my previous post you will see that I can successfully do a Windows Server backup using VSS followed by a Windows Server Restore and then, after adding one registry key, boot up and the full Windows Update history will still be there. I do mean the full history, not just the installed fixes.

This proves that VSS has copied the files to the backup correctly.

The reason that the history is lost on a simple backup/restore is that Windows Update itself detects that a backup has been done (through the RebootWatch registry key) and it then deletes the history. Don't ask me why Microsoft choose to do this because I have no idea - it seems stupid to me. I don't yet know if the RebootWatch registry key is dropped during the backup or the restore or why it should be dropped at all but it does appear to be by design. However VSS does copy the Windows Update history.

VSS does drop some filesbut I believe that they are only the files listed in the registry keys "FilesNotToBackup" and "FilesNotToSnapshot". Removing the filenames from these keys does ensure that VSS backs up these files also.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Mar 2012   #14

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Looks like win8 behaves the same.

Thanks for posting that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Mar 2012   #15

Windows 7 Pro 32-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FSL View Post
Firstly, thanks to writhziden for reply and rep. I tried to send you a PM but the system wouldn't let me.

Secondly, in response to skbaltimore - I am sorry but I must disagree with you. If you reread my previous post you will see that I can successfully do a Windows Server backup using VSS followed by a Windows Server Restore and then, after adding one registry key, boot up and the full Windows Update history will still be there. I do mean the full history, not just the installed fixes.

This proves that VSS has copied the files to the backup correctly.

The reason that the history is lost on a simple backup/restore is that Windows Update itself detects that a backup has been done (through the RebootWatch registry key) and it then deletes the history. Don't ask me why Microsoft choose to do this because I have no idea - it seems stupid to me. I don't yet know if the RebootWatch registry key is dropped during the backup or the restore or why it should be dropped at all but it does appear to be by design. However VSS does copy the Windows Update history.

VSS does drop some filesbut I believe that they are only the files listed in the registry keys "FilesNotToBackup" and "FilesNotToSnapshot". Removing the filenames from these keys does ensure that VSS backs up these files also.
I'm not really sure what you're disagreeing with. The fact that you mentioned a fix really has nothing to do with the fact that the problem exists. It's been discussed and documented extensively on the Paragon forum. Paragon uses VSS to do its hot processing imaging. There's also an option to use Paragon Hot Processing instead of VSS. When Paragon Hot Processing is used, the problem does not present itself; only when the VSS option is selected. That was my point. Also, when a cold image is made, sub-Windows with a disk, either Linux or WinPE, the problem does not exist either.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2012   #16
FSL

Windows 2008 R2 SP1, Windows 2000 Server SP4
 
 

What I am disagreeing with is your statement that
VSS, however, has one definite limitation: it does not bother to copy what it calls "non essential" Windows system files. One of the "victims" of that limitation is the Windows Update history.
This is not true. VSS does copy the Windows history (full history not just installed updates) as I demonstrated in my first post.

It is true that if you simply do a Windows backup/restore and reboot then the Windows Update history is deleted and that this is an apparently stupid bit of design by Microsoft. It is true that all of the other backup/restore programs do not have the same issue. That is because they retain the RebootWatch registry key which Microsoft is deliberately deleting.

I am not trying to say that Windows Update history is never deleted, nor that other backup/restore programs may or may not be better. I am only attempting to correct one factual error in your original submission.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows Update History Empty After WindowsImageBackup Restored




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