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  1. #1
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    Deleting System Image Restore Points

    Again, I'm circling back around to see if anyone has any ideas on how to delete "System Image Restore Points," of which I have about 27. They don't show up in CCleaner nor System Restore Explorer. Does anyone know where they're stored? Perhaps I could remove them manually?

    Thanks.

    WSC3

  2. #2
    davidhk
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    Quote Originally Posted by WSC3 View Post
    Again, I'm circling back around to see if anyone has any ideas on how to delete "System Image Restore Points," of which I have about 27. They don't show up in CCleaner nor System Restore Explorer. Does anyone know where they're stored? Perhaps I could remove them manually?

    Thanks.

    WSC3
    In case you have not. Take a look at this tutorial.

    How to Delete System Restore Points in Windows 10

    http://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/3...a.html#option4

    It covers 4 options.

    CCleaner is on Option Four.
    Last edited by davidhk; 2016-08-08 at 17:28.

  3. #3
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    You may find that turning System Protection off then on will get rid of those but it will remove all.

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    I would say you are talking about System Image Restore Points that are created using the Win10 built in method to create system image backups. I haven't found a way to delete them in Win10 yet but if you find out how to do that I'd be very interested in knowing.

    Now one way is what I call "hiding" them is to control disk space usage in System Protection.
    These numbers I'll mention are for examples only as there isn't a one size fits all answer as the size of the hard drive is involved. Let's say it's 500 GB.
    If you set the max usage to 5%, that's 25 GB and chances are you will see many System Image Restore Points if not all of them that will never go away.
    Now let's set the max usage to 2%, that's 10 GB. Now you will not see as many as there were at 5%, maybe none of them depending on whether or not there are enough newer regular system restore points.
    OK, bring the usage to back up to 5% or even higher if you want to experiment with and voila the prior System Image Restore Points will show up again.

    What gets me is that it's possible to do away with System Image Restore Points in Win7, but it isn't possible in Win 8.1 or Win10 that I know of. I even went to Microsoft help forum and they didn't have any answers. There were many recommendations but no solutions other than the method I just mentioned of what I call "hiding" them: controlling max usage vs. actually removing them.

    However if you find out how to do that I'd be very interested in knowing.

    I never did figure out how much disk space a System Image Restore Point takes up but if you want estimate what yours do, you can probably estimate it by playing around with the max usage settings.
    EDIT: maybe the disk space is negligible but I don't know at this point

    I don't know whether or not this is a fact but I suspect that "hidden" System Image Restore Points still take up space on the hard drive.
    Last edited by cmptrgy; 2016-08-08 at 22:34.

  5. #5
    davidhk
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    To : WSC3

    There is no such thing as system IMAGE restore point.

    When you do a system image backup using the built-in utility ( File History), the backup file is kept at a folder named WindowsImageBackup.

    If you are using an external hard drive to do system image backup , then open the ext. hdd and look for that folder.

    You can delete the backup file by ........( You need to be an admin to do that, of course)............
    Open WindowsImageBackup folder > Right click at the file > click Delete
    Last edited by davidhk; 2016-08-09 at 08:15.

  6. #6
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    I believe this is WSC3’s concern
    so I double-checked the System Image Restore point issue in System Restore.

    In this article which has already been posted
    http://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/3...a.html#option4
    It states the options in this tutorial will not delete a System Image Restore Point that is created when you create a system image.
    Then there is this snapshot

    System Image Restore Point.PNG


    I also checked my brothers computer since he uses the built in system image backup process and he has the same entry naturally for the dates that apply to him.
    Those are the ones I was referencing to in my prior post that will never go away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidhk View Post
    To : WSC3

    There is no such thing as system IMAGE restore point.

    When you do a system image backup using the built-in utility ( File History), the backup file is kept at a folder named WindowsImageBackup.

    If you are using an external hard drive to do system image backup , then open the ext. hdd and look for that folder.

    You can delete the backup file by ........( You need to be an admin to do that, of course)............
    Open WindowsImageBackup folder > Right click at the file > click Delete
    You can't actually delete an image on an external HDD - they just seem to be shortcuts that you can see.

    I found that out when having created an image onto a new external HDD, I thought I'd deleted it but the same used space remained.

    Had to reformat it to get rid of that one.

  8. #8
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    Hey DavidHK,

    If you'll look at the top of that page you referenced right under the info box, it says, "The options in this tutorial will not delete a System Image Restore Point that is created when you create a system image." As I noted, I have 27 of these, and they do not appear in CCleaner nor the System Restore Explorer app. I could even delete them manually (maybe) if I could figure out where they're located. I'm not even clear on why they're handled differently by W10 than a regular restore point. Any ideas?

    Make sense?

    Thanks.

  9. #9
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    cmptrgy,

    I've not found any way to remove them either, so I guess that makes me feel better. And yeah, i can delete them all by reducing my allotted storage to 0 for restore points, but i was hoping for more control than that. I image my drive weekly as part of my DR, so this will be an on-going issue.

    But, I hear you saying that even reducing allotted storage will not remove them? My boot drive is a SSD, so i'm more concerned than i was when I wrote this. Maybe they are just shortcuts to the image file itself? I was assuming they were sizable. Maybe Fred Langa would take up this issue.

    Keep me posted.

  10. #10
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    cmptrgy,

    I've not found any way to remove them either, so I guess that makes me feel better. And yeah, i can delete them all by reducing my allotted storage to 0 for restore points, but i was hoping for more control than that. I image my drive weekly as part of my DR, so this will be an on-going issue.

    But, I hear you saying that even reducing allotted storage will not remove them? My boot drive is a SSD, so i'm more concerned than i was when I wrote this. Maybe they are just shortcuts to the image file itself? I was assuming they were sizable. Maybe Fred Langa would take up this issue.

    Keep me posted.

  11. #11
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    I have quite a few system image restore points on my Win 7 which are listed as Backup types, but I haven't been running Win 10 long enough to accrue any of those, especially as I've had to restore with a system image following a number of abortive attempts to manually get the AU.

    That leaves the space used at 0

    EDIT - Something I've found out with 10586.494 is that System Protection isn't an option in Safe Mode with Networking as it is in Win 7 which you can use when a restore point fails in normal mode.
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2016-08-09 at 12:25.

  12. #12
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    WSC3

    “i can delete them all by reducing my allotted storage to 0 for restore points, but i was hoping for more control than that.” I hear you.
    “Maybe they are just shortcuts to the image file itself?” I suspect that is a possibility.

    In my prior post I mentioned comparing 2% vs. 5% amounting to ”hiding” older System Image Restore Points but I’m beginning to think that isn’t the case: it’s something that was reported in one of the Microsoft help forums. I suspect it’s possible they will always be there regardless of whatever the max usage is set to. Reading other recommendations just adds to the confusion as to whether or not that is true.

    I just called my brother and asked him if he wouldn’t mind decreasing his max usage to 0%.
    It went only to 1% and his System Image Restore Point was still there but current usage reported 0 bytes. I just called him back to find out whether or not he upgraded to Win10; he didn't as he decided to stay on Win7.

    It sounds like your “shortcut” idea makes sense and since 0 bytes is being reported at least that’s a good thing.
    I thought he was doing monthly updates but wasn’t and only had one in July per my prodding.
    Anyway I can’t say how consistent that data is as its only one reference point but it is in real time.
    But then if the System Image Restore Points amount to 0 it appears to be insignificant disk space.
    EDIT: Sudo15 does mention 0 used space in post #11

    Maybe this is an idea since you have as many as 27 System Image Restore Points if you don’t mind doing so.
    Pull up the properties of your SSD (BTW, I have a 250GB SSD but it’s more than enough for me)
    --- Note how much used and free space is used.
    Go into your system protection disk space usage and click on delete all restore points for this drive
    Click on apply.
    Compare the SSD properties to see if the used & free space changed
    Go back into system restore and create a manual point and keep your system restore procedures in place
    I don’t recommend operating without at least one system restore point in place
    --- Actually I always ensure there is a minimum of 2 system restore points on my computer.
    Last edited by cmptrgy; 2016-08-09 at 18:09.

  13. #13
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    cmptrgy,

    My SSD is 500GB, so i think i'm safe as well. I just didn't want this consumption to go on forever, which is why I was concerned. I'd rather not clear out all of my restore points either, just for a test. I have three now, I think, plus the 27 imaginary ones (or whatever they are). I'll hang for now, but i've not been able to find anything on the web to explain what these image points are.

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    They are created whenever you create an external system image - at least they are for me and will continue to accrue.

    You can create an external system image - restore with it then you will see your restore point usage at 0, but they will start to populate again as you create the images - just forget about them - as long it continues to create the internal ones then that's all you really need to worry about.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sudo15 View Post
    They are created whenever you create an external system image - at least they are for me and will continue to accrue.

    You can create an external system image - restore with it then you will see your restore point usage at 0, but they will start to populate again as you create the images - just forget about them - as long it continues to create the internal ones then that's all you really need to worry about.
    I believe you'll find that Sudo15 is correct.
    Humor me for a moment, as I try to bring some clarity to the foregoing discussion.

    A System Restore Point is not the same as a complete System Image. Any authoritative source who confuses the two terms should be whipped (with at least a wet noodle).
    Using a term like System Image Restore Point may be misleading. Lots of people have been confused by that terminology ever since Microsoft allowed it to rear its ugly head.
    Let's just say that restore points are essentially partial images of the system, while drive images are complete images of the system.

    A complete System Image is an image of the hard drive on which your operating system resides (in other words, usually the C: drive).
    A System Restore Point is a backup of just certain system files -- but not the entire computer's operating system, programs, and data.

    Doing a "system image restore" involves restoring an image of the entire hard drive (everything).
    Restoring to a previous system status by using a restore point is just replacing certain system files (not replacing data, programs, etc.).
    They both replace certain "system" files but only an image is a complete record of all files.

    In terms of design philosophy the inclusion of Restore Point creation and restoration in Windows was meant as a means of preventing most kinds of damage to the operating system -- but which stopped short of actually preserving all files and settings. There are still only two reliable ways to preserve your operating system, programs, and all data -- those two methods are (1) imaging your hard drive, or (2) cloning your hard drive.

    Either cloning or imaging works well and is more dependable under all circumstances than using System Restore Points. Restore Point creation and restoral is handy but not as close to foolproof as drive imaging (or cloning).

    RANT
    By the way, Microsoft has been guilty more than once in the past of "inventing" new terms out of perfectly good (well defined) terms which have existed long before Microsoft existed. Just because Microsoft used the term does not make it acceptable to the world of computing at large, and some of the terms Microsoft coined can often confuse more people than are helped.
    END RANT

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