We have all experienced the joys of Windows computing failure. Whether it’s a complete system shutdown or malware that’s ruining your access, using Windows’ in-place backups will be an event that every Windows user will have to live through. The question remains, what does a system restore do? What about disaster recovery, aren’t they the exact same thing? Well, the answer is no. Not only are they not the same thing, they both have a designated role to play in preventing and assisting in protecting your computer from even more disastrous occurrences.
Windows System Restore
Windows comes in place with a system restore that will revert to the computer to its default, out of the box state that it initially began in. Windows Me, Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 all have a system restore in place that will take all existing system files, registry keys, and installed programs to their original state removing any updates and enhancements made.
A system restore does not remove viruses, malware, and has no effect on actual data. It only reverts the system to its original condition. A system restore backs up system files of only key extensions, those that are .exe, .dll, etc.. and saves them for recovery. It will not restore or backup user data, such as files and folders in “My Documents”. Since Windows system restore does not monitor or change documents or data, it is often done when the computer has met a large system failure.
Windows System restore can only be done by the Windows Administrator of the computer. When the restore has taken place, the system should recommend that files or folders created that were removed be placed in My Documents to prevent further loss or corruption.
Disaster recovery reverts the system to protect it from failure. A disaster recovery is essentially a backup of data that has the necessary applications to reboot a failed system. This includes the operating system, applications, and data. Disaster recovery is exactly as it sounds – it is to recover the system from disaster. It works with the files and is often slow, which is actually a benefit. Disaster recovery also goes through personal files and folders, although this is an option left up to the user. Disaster recovery is used to restore the Windows, program files, documents, settings, and the actual system.
Deney serves as CEO for Nordisk Systems, Inc. As a preferred IT solutions provider since 1983, Nordisk Systems has the experience and expertise in providing disaster recovery solutions for businesses.