System Restore is a method of returning the registry, system files, and installed programs to an earlier state.
Is that all you want to do?? Or are you looking for a way to restore an entire partition?
There are registry backup programs such as ERUNT, but I'm not sure how well they work on Windows 7.
I'm not sure if there are any third party programs that do EXACTLY what System Restore does and no more.
On the other hand, there are several programs that can restore an entire partition.