Cannot delete old restore points


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G

Gene E. Bloch

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:
{a39bb8f0-9d31-4a32-8b34-f35110142302}

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.
Thanks for the info that you tracked down.

One interesting thing is that I have never used Windows's Backup
program, at list not knowingly. Maybe it is a tool some other program
used without my knowledge. Of course I'm assuming that these restore
points are related to Backup - but maybe they're not.

I agree with the posters who say to leave it alone, at least until I'm
ready to break my system :)
 
E

Ed Cryer

Ed said:
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
My reasoning goes like this;
1. The natural solution seems to be; turn sys restore off, delete
catalogue files, turn back on and it should create new empty ones.
But
2. We've tried turning on/off but they're still there.
3. No option to delete from list.
4. This system's behaviour is counter-intuitive. Woe betide anyone who
tries an intuitive hack on it.

Ed
 
D

Dave-UK

Paul said:
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
What I find unusual is that I don't use Windows Backup to back up files.
I keep System Restore active in case I ever need it and I make a system
image once in a while to an external drive.
These 'backup' files I've got are only 60k ~ 80k in size and they seem to
have been made on a regular basis.
Also, inside some of the files are references to things I've never used, like
a Brother printer, or a Gestetner printer.
They're not XML format as the only way I can read anything inside them
is with a hex editor. Although the are labelled as type Backup I think they
are something to do with restore points.
As a test I've tried to delete one of the files but I can't do it using Windows.
No matter how I fiddle around with permissions I can't delete, rename or
move it. Interestingly, I can delete the contents with a hex editor and it will
save the changes but the file stays put.
I can't let this go so I'm now downloading a copy of Puppy Linux to see if
I can delete a file and see if it gets removed from the restore point list.
 
D

Dave-UK

Dave-UK said:
What I find unusual is that I don't use Windows Backup to back up files.
I keep System Restore active in case I ever need it and I make a system
image once in a while to an external drive.
These 'backup' files I've got are only 60k ~ 80k in size and they seem to
have been made on a regular basis.
Also, inside some of the files are references to things I've never used, like
a Brother printer, or a Gestetner printer.
They're not XML format as the only way I can read anything inside them
is with a hex editor. Although the are labelled as type Backup I think they
are something to do with restore points.
As a test I've tried to delete one of the files but I can't do it using Windows.
No matter how I fiddle around with permissions I can't delete, rename or
move it. Interestingly, I can delete the contents with a hex editor and it will
save the changes but the file stays put.
I can't let this go so I'm now downloading a copy of Puppy Linux to see if
I can delete a file and see if it gets removed from the restore point list.
Well, I've tried to run two linux live cds on this machine and they both
hang during boot-up with the message:

Recognizing media devices ...optical input..._

So I guess linux has some sort of problem with my dvd drive even though
it's booting from it. The cds boot ok in my laptop.
So I'm giving up with this and will ignore the extra restore point entries.
:-(
 
P

Paul

Dave-UK said:
Well, I've tried to run two linux live cds on this machine and they both
hang during boot-up with the message:

Recognizing media devices ...optical input..._

So I guess linux has some sort of problem with my dvd drive even though
it's booting from it. The cds boot ok in my laptop.
So I'm giving up with this and will ignore the extra restore point entries.
:-(
The hits I could find on that message, suggest adding "edd=off" to the
Puppy boot command line kernel boot options.

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=47478

The picture here, shows your opportunity to add kernel parameters at boot.

http://www.dedoimedo.com/images/computers/puppy_boot_screen.jpg

*******

As for what "Enhanced Disk Drive Services" are, I can find a ref here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Int_0x13

"To support even larger addressing modes, an interface known as
INT 13h Extensions was introduced by Western Digital and Phoenix
Technologies as part of BIOS Enhanced Disk Drive Services."

So the problem could be related in some way, to INT 0x13.

Paul
 
D

Dave-UK

Paul said:
The hits I could find on that message, suggest adding "edd=off" to the
Puppy boot command line kernel boot options.

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=47478

The picture here, shows your opportunity to add kernel parameters at boot.

http://www.dedoimedo.com/images/computers/puppy_boot_screen.jpg

*******

As for what "Enhanced Disk Drive Services" are, I can find a ref here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Int_0x13

"To support even larger addressing modes, an interface known as
INT 13h Extensions was introduced by Western Digital and Phoenix
Technologies as part of BIOS Enhanced Disk Drive Services."

So the problem could be related in some way, to INT 0x13.

Paul
Thanks for that. I might play around with Puppy a bit more as there are
a couple of option screens, F2 and F3 on boot up.
But I'm not really bothered too much about Linux as it's not really for me.
I like thinks to work first time ! :)
 
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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:
{a39bb8f0-9d31-4a32-8b34-f35110142302}

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
I can confirm that deleting the relevant files from \SPPMetadataCache eliminates phantom restore points. To access the files I booted into Parted Magic and backed them up (SPPMetadataCache.tar.gz) before deletion.
 
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FYI, the freebie "Long Path Tool" program has always worked for me. It allows you to delete, rename, or move files and folders.
 

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