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Restore-Point Options

First introduced with Windows Me, System Restore is a feature that was long overdue. While Windows Update and the temptation to update your drivers and install apps (that often overwrite system DLLs) is all fine in the name of progress, we all know that sinking feeling when Windows suddenly takes a nosedive after you've just made some so-called improvement. System Restore comes to the rescue, saving you the hassle of the tried, true, and incredibly time-wasting format and reinstall ritual. At least that's the idea. System Restore isn't a panacea, but along with driver rollback (see Chapter 27's section called “Using Driver Rollback”) and parallel DLLs, the need for total reinstalls is going to be lower than it used to be. System Restore will probably save you once or twice, if you do much with your systems at all.

There are two essential setting areas you should check out with System Restore before you get working with Windows XP. To get to the settings, choose Control Panel, System. Then click on the System Restore tab. The first option, a check box, determines whether you want System Restore turned on at all, but by default it is on. Secondly, you can alter the default amount of disk space (on each logical drive) allocated for storage of restore point information. Restore points are explicit points in time to which you can revert the system, in case Windows XP begins to malfunction (typically after an application installation or some other kind of update scenario). By choosing a restore point, you can even undo a restore after you've tried it, in case it doesn't fix your problem. Then you can try another restore point.


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