Cannot delete old restore points

Discussion in 'alt.windows7.general' started by walter, Mar 2, 2013.

  1. walter

    walter Guest

    I use Windows Images and Windows Restore points, depending on the severity
    of my problem.

    When I restore the system I go to Control Panel > System > System
    Protection, which opens the System Restore Panel.

    In the Description Column of the Restore Panel, it shows "System Image
    restore Point", in the Type column it shows either "Manual" or "system" or

    The Restore Panel shows the current restore points, and these restore points
    work fine. However, when I check the box "Show more restore points", the
    Restore Panel produces a long list (hundreds) of restore points going back
    to the date when I first installed Windows and showing the date for every
    IMAGE I created over the past three years. They are all listed as Type

    These old restore points do not work: "The selected backup could not be
    found". Only the more recent restore points work.

    I cannot get get rid of these old, inactive "Backup" restore points. I have
    deleted all restore points, I have deleted all restore points except the
    last one, I have inactivated/reactivated the restore system. Are these
    imaginary restore points merely shadow copies that do not really exists and
    therefore cannot be deleted? They serve no purpose, except to annoy me.

    Thanks for any input.

    walter, Mar 2, 2013
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  2. walter

    123Jim Guest

    Sounds like they might be listed in the registry, while all the files
    are long gone.

    I would try using ccleaner to try to remove the restore points, it might
    do a better job of cleaning up the registry entries.

    ccleaner > tools > system restore

    If that does not work, you could run ccleaner's registry cleaner. Many
    people caution against using a registry cleaner but I've never had any
    problems after using ccleaner in that way.

    If you don't want to do that you could manually remove the registry
    entries if they exist using regedit.exe which is the windows utility.
    123Jim, Mar 2, 2013
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  3. walter

    Paul Guest

    Another possibility, is the data is stored in one of the many XML
    files associated with that stuff. It might not be in the registry.
    I'm just going by the System Image folders I keep here, and they seem
    to be littered with XML. So I'd probably sniff around for XML
    (if the folder permissions would let me :) )

    It's not really my computer after all - Microsoft owns it, so why
    should I have permission to look in all the folders :) :)

    Paul, Mar 2, 2013
  4. I have a couple of restore points listed in the System Restore list
    which are very old and are not listed in Shadow Explorer's list. They
    are marked as type Backup. If I try to use them, I get "Backup drive can
    not be found".

    Maybe that's a clue. I don't know.

    OTOH, look here:
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 2, 2013
  5. Gene E. Bloch, Mar 2, 2013
  6. walter

    walter Guest

    Thanks, but CC Cleaner only shows current (active) restore points. Otherwise
    blank. I guess, these phantom files reside in my Windows subconscious.
    Windows is dreaming.
    walter, Mar 2, 2013
  7. walter

    walter Guest

    cc Cleaner ran a registry scan but shows a clean registry, except for a few
    niggles. I did a find for "restore" in the registry but nothing pertinent
    showed up. Don't really know exactly what to look for in the registry.
    walter, Mar 2, 2013
  8. We need Sigmund Freud to help us. And I like your view of this...

    I did a bit of Googling. Nothing of interest (or at least nothing I
    understood) showed up. Maybe I just didn't find an appropriate search
    term. Maybe I could try Restorophrenia or something.

    It did lead me on an OT tangent about slow boot up times (a problem of
    mine). No joy there either.
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 2, 2013
  9. walter

    Rob Guest

    You can use Disk Cleanup to delete restore points and free hard disk
    space on your computer.
    Rob, Mar 3, 2013
  10. Gene E. Bloch, Mar 3, 2013
  11. walter

    Rob Guest

    Rob, Mar 3, 2013
  12. walter

    Ed Cryer Guest

    Gene read the OP. Apparently you didn't. And so you've wasted time with
    a useless response; and then secondly you've started throwing insults
    around like a baby, which makes things even worse.
    Have a serious look at your attitude. It's in dire need of repair.

    Ed Cryer, Mar 3, 2013
  13. walter

    Ed Cryer Guest

    I have a part of this problem. Mine shows system images (about 12) going
    back to when I started taking them every month or so. Everything else
    (restore points included) is ok. When I try a restore with one of the
    images, it says not found.

    What I do every month is take a system image to an external HD. But
    because they overwrite the previous file (and they're only allowed into
    the root of the disk) I cut and paste the previous one into a subfolder.

    Ed Cryer, Mar 3, 2013
  14. walter

    walter Guest

    I tried Disk Cleanup. No luck. Thanks
    walter, Mar 3, 2013
  15. walter

    123Jim Guest

    Did you have restore turned off at the time?
    123Jim, Mar 3, 2013
  16. walter

    Dave-UK Guest

    I too have a series of restore points, ( only 10), of type Backup. They seem to have been
    created about once a month and they don't show up in CCleaners list of restore points.
    They go from 8/2/13 back to 25/6/12 (UK date format dd/mm/yy).

    I've found a group of files, 12, that have the same dates as the Backup restore points,
    they're about 60-80K in size and they have random names in the GUID format, like:

    When I look at them with a hex editor there's stuff listed like updates, software info,
    hardware info and registry settings.

    They are listed in a hidden folder:

    C:\System Volume Information\WindowsImageBackup\SPPMetadataCache

    The dates of the Backup restore points are also referenced in a couple of files:

    C:\System Volume Information\WindowsImageBackup\Catalog\GlobalCatalog
    C:\System Volume Information\WindowsImageBackup\Catalog\BackupGlobalCatalog

    To get access to these files and folders you'll need to take ownership etc.
    I haven't got a clue if it's safe to delete any of this stuff!
    I haven't tried deleting anything from my folders as I don't want to mess
    my system up. :)
    Good luck.
    Dave-UK, Mar 3, 2013
  17. walter

    walter Guest

    I tried it both on and off. No luck. I guess I will have to live with this
    nuisance. It's really no big deal.
    walter, Mar 3, 2013
  18. walter

    walter Guest

    Thanks for the input. Intriguing but I don't want to mess around with the
    image backup files, either. Everything is working fine. If it ain't broke,
    don't fix it.
    walter, Mar 3, 2013
  19. walter

    Paul Guest

    They could be XML format. That's what I would have expected
    as a storage method for the information. It's not always in
    the registry now. My suspicion was based on seeing XML used
    in my System Image folder. And the same can apply to
    System Volume Information contents.

    I don't have a problem with working inside SVI... as long as you
    have a complete backup of C:. I had one accident already, and
    needed that backup. And it was while playing inside SVI, from Linux.

    If I had to guess, how to "make SVI safe", it would be to
    disable the VSS service, so no open VSS files are present
    in SVI. Then, there should be no "special files" inside SVI,
    making it marginally safer for experimentation. But, only
    with that backup handy... :) Um, have fun.

    Paul, Mar 3, 2013
  20. walter

    Ed Cryer Guest

    I wouldn't.
    We have a situation here wherein the System Restore facility wrongly
    keeps entries for non-existent points. Even when you select one and it
    tells you that it doesn't exist, it doesn't give you the option to
    remove it from the list.
    I wouldn't feel at all safe trying to get a workaround for that. Any
    slight mistake could ruin the whole system; and then you'd have to
    reinstall the OS to repair it.

    This is definitely a "letter to MS situation".

    Ed Cryer, Mar 3, 2013
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