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Windows 7: System Protection Restore Points - Delete

System Protection Restore Points - Delete

How to Delete System Protection Restore Points in Windows 7 and Windows 8
Published by Brink
05 Nov 2008
Published by

How to Delete System Protection Restore Points in Windows 7 and Windows 8

information   Information
This will show you how to delete all, all but the most recent, or individual System Protection restore points for a selected hard disk in Windows 7 and Windows 8.

System Restore isn't available for Windows RT.

warning   Warning
If you delete all of the restore points, then you cannot restore the disk until System Protection is on and a restore point is created for the hard disk again.

It has been reported that some 3rd party disk defragmentation programs could also delete your restore points when used.






OPTION ONE
Through System Protection to Delete All Restore Points

WARNING: This will delete all restore points (system settings and previous versions of files) for the selected hard disk.
1. Open the Control Panel (icons view) in Windows 7 or Windows 8, and click/tap on the System icon.

2. In the left side of System, click/tap on the System Protection link. (See screenshot below)

3. If prompted by UAC, then click/tap on Yes.

4. Close the System window. (See screenshot below)
System Protection Restore Points - Delete-system.jpg
5. Click/tap on the available hard disk drive or partition, that you want to delete the System Protection restore points for, to select it. (See screenshot below step 6)
NOTE: Windows should be the C: disk with (System). System Protection will need to be turned on for the selected disk to be able to delete the restore points.

6. Click/tap on the Configure button. (See screenshot below)
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7. Click/tap on the Delete button. (See screenshot below)
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8. Click/tap on the Continue button to confirm the deletion. (See screenshot below)
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9. Click/tap on Close in the success prompt. (See screenshot below)
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10. Click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 7)

11. Click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 6)



OPTION TWO
Through Disk Cleanup to Delete All Restore Points

NOTE: This will help free up more disk space for the selected hard disk by removing all but the most recent restore point. This will also include deleting shadow copies (Previous Versions) that were created with a deleted restore point.
1. Press the Windows + R keys to open the Run dialog, type cleanmgr, and press Enter.

2. Select the hard disk you want to use Disk Cleanup on, and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below)
NOTE: You will not see this window unless you have more than one drive or partition on your computer.
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3. You will now see this scanning screenshot below for a few seconds.
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4. Click/tap on the Clean up system files button. (See screenshot below)
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5. If prompted by UAC, then click/tap on Yes.

6. Select the hard disk you want to use Disk Cleanup on, and click/tap on OK. (See screenshot below step 2)
NOTE: You will not see this window unless you have more than one drive or partition on your computer.

7. Click/tap on the More Options tab, and click/tap on the Clean up button under the System Restore and Shadow Copies section. (See screenshot below)
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8. Click/tap on the Delete button in the confirm deletion window. (See screenshot below)
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9. Close the Disk Cleanup window. (See screenshot below step 7)
WARNING: Do not click on OK unless you wanted to delete the checked files in the Disk Cleanup tab.



OPTION THREE
Using "CCleaner" to Delete Individual Restore Points
1. If you have not already, download and install the free program CCleaner and run it.

2. In CCleaner, click on the Tools icon, System Restore button, then select the restore points that you wish to delete and click on Remove. (see screenshot below)
NOTE: You can press and hold the CTRL key while clicking on the restore points to be able to select random restore points.
System Protection Restore Points - Delete-ccleaner.jpg
3. Click on OK to confirm deleting them. (see screenshot below)
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4. When finished, close CCleaner. The selected restore points have been deleted.



OPTION FOUR
Using "System Restore Explorer" to Delete Individual Restore Points

Note   Note
You could also use the System Restore Explorer program to mount specific restore points to be able to browse and copy individual files and folders from a mounted restore point back into Windows without having to use Previous Versions or to do a full System Restore.

For more on this, see:
How to Extract Files and Folders from System Restore Points in Windows 7 and Vista

1. If you have not already, download and install the free program System Restore Explorer and run it.

2. In System Restore Explorer, select a specific restore point that you would like to delete, and click on the Delete button. (see screenshot below)
NOTE: If displayed, uncheck the Hide restore points created in last 5 days box to see all restore points.
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3. Click on Yes to confirm the deletion. (see screenshot below)
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4. When finished, close System Restore Explorer. The selected restore points have been deleted.
That's it,
Shawn





Related Tutorials

05 Jan 2009   #1
Airbot

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Hey Shawn,

I don't have the More Options Tab with Disk Cleanup.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jan 2009   #2
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hi Aaron,

It looks like MS made a change. I updated METHOD TWO to correct this. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

Shawn
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Jan 2009   #3
Airbot

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

You're welcome. SR was also turned off and the space was very low for my 50GB partition I have 7 on. I turned it on, raised the space, created two different restore points. I don't know why it was turned off.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


05 Jan 2009   #4
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Not sure why either. System Protection (SR) is turned on by default.

Happy to hear that you got it sorted though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2009   #5
marsmimar

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 
System Protection Restore Point vs. System Image RP

As I mentioned in an earlier question, I recently got a new laptop with Win 7 Pro installed. I'm trying to get used to the differences between 7 Pro and XP Pro. I've created several System Images over the past week or so and each one has created its own System Image Restore Point. They will not delete through System Protection or Disk Cleanup. Are they destined to remain indefinitely or is there some other way to delete them?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Dec 2009   #6
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Hello Marsmimar,

If you wanted to delete all of them, then the quickest way is to turn system protection off for that drive, then turn it back on.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Dec 2009   #7
marsmimar

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Hi Shawn -
Again, thanks for your quick response. I must be doing something wrong because I still can't get the system image restore points deleted. I got the prompt asking me if I wanted to turn off system protection. I clicked the "yes" button (11:44pm.) I confirmed that protection was turned off (11:45pm.) Then I restarted my computer, re-confirmed that system protection was still off, and I also noted that "current usage" = 0 bytes (11:50pm.) I turned system protection back on but the system image restore points were still there (11:53pm.) Note: screen shots are left to right, top to bottom, using times in the notification area.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Dec 2009   #8
Brink
Microsoft MVP

64-bit Windows 8.1 Enterprise
 
 

Strange,

Give CCleaner a try to see if it can remove them for you.

System Protection Restore Points - Delete-ccleaner.jpg


My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Dec 2009   #9
marsmimar

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Oops... my bad! Must've been lack of sleep. Should have mentioned in my last post I already checked CCleaner. Nothing there to remove. Just for grins I used regedit look for "system image" and found two possible locations that might have system image data stored: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT and HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE. They each make reference to a Microsoft IMAPI2 File System Image Creator. Could I / should I manually edit the registry to clean out these restore points?

All system images were saved to an external hard drive (Drive E.) First system image was on 12/23. Each subsequent system image was an overwrite of the older previous image. Is it possible that each new system image created (by default) another restore point when in fact there was only one actual restore point (the latest system image)? Hope I'm explaining my thought process clearly. I just plugged in my external HD and it shows only one system image on it because all of the previous images were just overwritten. If I try to access a system image restore point from the external HD from 12/23 thru 12/30 11:59:38 AM it shows an error message that it can't be located. The only restore point available from the external HD is the last one made on 12/30 12:23:09 PM.

I even installed a copy of CCleaner in a new folder on the external HD and checked Tools > System Restore. There were no restore points for Drive E earlier than 12/30 12:23:09 PM. Weird stuff, no?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 System Protection Restore Points - Delete




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