Restore Previous Versions always says "There are no previous versions"

  1. Posts : 7
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64

    Restore Previous Versions always says "There are no previous versions"

    I've set up a scheduled daily backup of particular data folders on my C drive. The backups are taking place as scheduled, and the latest versions of the files are appearing in the backup. But when I use Win. Explorer and right-click>Restore Previous Versions, no previous versions show up. Daily Windows restore points are also being created at startup. I am running a standalone laptop and backing up to an external 2TB drive with plenty of available space.

    I have checked the following and all are correct.

    Previous Versions Requirements
    System Protection for the C drive in ON
    Files that are not system files are included in Windows Backups.
    Volume Shadow Copy - Service set to Manual (appears as 'stopped' when checked with Task Manager)
    Server - Service set to Started and Automatic.
    TCP/IP NetBios Helper - Service set to Started and Automatic.
    Workstation - Service set to Started and Automatic.

    What am I missing?

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  2. Posts : 6,941
    W7 home premium 32bit/W7HP 64bit/w10 tp insider ring

    How much space have you allocated on System restore?

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Restore Previous Versions always says "There are no previous versions"-sysrest.png  
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  3. Posts : 7
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for the reply. Answer is:

    SamSung SSD (C: ) : 7.71GB used / max usage 9.51 GB (2%)

    Toshiba 2TB External HardDrive (used for backups etc): 163.36 used / 372.60 GB max usage (20%)

    I wonder if I could at some point in the past have switched off some service (config.sys > services/startup) that is actually needed for Backup? Although on checking I see that I have left all Microsoft services running.
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  4. Posts : 7
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64
    Thread Starter

    Bingo! I found what I was looking for on a couple of other sevenforum threads, and am summarizing what I did here to make the previous versions available in case it helps anyone else.

    How to Fix ‘Previous Versions Not Available’ (Windows 7, SP1)

    Presuming that you have a regular schedule of creating Windows Backup and/or automatic System Restore Points. Backup you have to set up yourself. System restore points are created automatically by Windows at start up by default.

    1. Check that System Protection for the C drive and other drives you wish to be included in the backup is ON: Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > System > System Protection > Select drive > Configure > Restore system settings and previous versions of files or Only restore previous versions of files.

    2. Check that files that are not system files are included in Windows Backups: Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > Backup & Restore > Change settings > Select your backup drive and click Next > Check your backup selection

    3. Check status of various Services: Start key > Type 'Services' and press Enter

    Volume Shadow Copy – Manual (may be Started or Stopped)
    Server – Started and Automatic.
    TCP/IP NetBios Helper – Started and Automatic.
    Workstation – Started and Automatic.

    4. Check that file and printer sharing is on: Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center > Change Advanced sharing settings.

    5. Check that the relevant drives used by Windows Backup for both the files to back up and for saving the backup are shared: Computer Management > Disk Management > Right-click the drive > Properties > Sharing > Advanced Sharing > Tick ‘Share this folder’

    You can also check which drives are shared by looking in: Computer Management > System Tools > Shared Folders > Shares. Shared drives will have a $ behind the drive letter. E.g. C$ and G$

    6. Open Regedit (Start key > Run > type Regedit > press Enter) and backup your registry (File > Export)

    Locate and then click the following registry sub-key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Parameters

    If the AutoShareServer and AutoShareWks DWORD values in the LanmanServer\Parameters
    sub-key are configured with a value data of 0, change that value to 1 (right-click > modify > 1). When done it should look like this:

    AutoShareserver REG_DWORD 0x00000001 (1)
    AutoShareWks REG_DWORD 0x00000001 (1)

    I noticed that someone had noted that AutoShareWks was absent on their computer, but it made no difference to the results.

    7. If previous versions from both Restore points and Backup are not showing, and you want to see the previous versions in the Backup location, then try running the registry modifier (and reboot) available at:

    Previous Versions - Hide or Show from Backup Location

    I tried the Option 2 mentioned on this page (run the Local Group Policy Editor, gpedit.msc, and in the left-hand pane: User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Explorer > Previous Versions > Hide previous versions of files on backup location > Not Configured or Disabled), but it did not reveal the previous versions in the Backup. The registry modifer however did the trick. Enabling the ‘Hide’ option hides previous versions in the Backup location.

    8. Reboot, and check that previous versions are now available (select and right-click a file in Windows Explorer > Restore Previous Versions). You may have to open, edit and save a document before previous versions will show up. If autosaving of restore points is turned off, you will probably have to invoke a Windows Backup before you will see previous versions listed.) Also, on my computer, if I check Restore Previous Versions of a document from within MS-Word, only restore point versions are listed. Doing the same from Windows Explorer, both backup and restore point versions are present.... ("And that's all I have to say about that!" - Forrest Gump).

    PS. It is perhaps worth mentioning that a friend whose computer had been attacked by the Cryptowall ransomware virus had ALL his user files on ALL his attached drives encrypted. After several days of trying everything he could think of to restore access to the files, he tried Shadow Explorer, which revealed that his shadow copies were all intact and unencrypted.
    Last edited by johndavidson; 10 May 2016 at 02:50. Reason: Updated info
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  5. Posts : 7
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64
    Thread Starter

    Thanks to all concerned. Much appreciated.
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 855
    Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)

    I had downloaded ShadowExplorer in the past, but didn't have it loaded onto this particular PC and your posts inspired me to try it on this one. It's very cool and I'd forgotten about it.

    Just can't have too many options for finding lost stuff! Thanks for following-up.
      My Computer


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