Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

CCleaner and System Restore points may or may not be related. Either way, a good backup will keep you safer than System Restore can ever do.

XP Professional; SP3; CCleaner 3.17. My system repair points are deleted with CCleaner. I downloaded CCleaner; I changed nothing; I saw that I had some system recovery points. I find out after eight months this morning that I cannot find anything about it on the internet. I live in the Netherlands and I'm 76-years young.

In this excerpt from Answercast #85, I look at another case where System Restore proves to be unreliable. A good backup system would work better.

CCleaner and System Restore points

So, I was unable to find a relationship between CCleaner and System Restore points.

My belief is that your System Restore points may be getting deleted by some other means. What I want to do is I want to point you at my article, "Why I don't like System Restore".

System Restore is unreliable

System Restore, when it works, is actually pretty cool.

The problem is it can't be counted on. Restore points disappear. Restore points that are listed don't work. Sometimes, they do... but basically what I keep hearing from people is that when they need it the most, for whatever reason, System Restore fails them.

Rely on a proper backup

That's why I so strongly recommend that you do not rely on System Restore and that instead you rely on a proper set of backing up your machine instead.

That's something that is under your control. You can control how much data is being saved, and for how long, and can obviously then restore to anything that you know you saved.

System restore to me is unpredictable.

CCleaner problems

Now, it is possible that CCleaner is deleting these things. I really don't have a good answer for you on CCleaner itself. But I would simply use this as an opportunity to investigate alternatives to System Restore and not relying on it.

Basically, I want to make the fact that CCleaner might be deleting these things not be an issue because you've got yourself covered in some other way.

(Transcript lightly edited for readability.)

End of Answercast 85 Back to - Audio Segment

Article C6221 - January 7, 2013 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

January 7, 2013 9:00 AM

CCleaner deleted my restore points as well.

January 7, 2013 11:45 AM

In CCleaner version 3.23, we can select Tools, then System Restore. There you will find a list with the date, time, and description of all restore points that are still in place. You can manually select the restore points you wish to remove. Based on this screen (and my experience in using restore points), I think that CCleaner does NOT automatically delete our system restore points.

January 7, 2013 3:40 PM

s stated above CCleaner does NOT automatically delete restore points, "you" have the option to "manually" delete restore points under "Tools". I've used CCleaner for many years with never a problem so if your restore points are mysteriously being deleted I'd look for another culprit and also as Leo said use a "reliable" backup instead of system restore.

January 8, 2013 8:34 AM

CCleaner might be deleting automatically, depends on how you set it up. You have the option to select what you do and do not want it to delete. Use with extreme care, if you do not know what the folder is - DO NOT DELETE IT, could cause computer functions to not operate the way your use to.

January 8, 2013 9:26 AM

One of the first things I do when setting up a new Windows install, is to turn off 'system restore'.
Even if it works right sometimes, there are much better options. I think Leo may have mentioned backing up your PC.
With CCleaner, the only option I change when I install it, is to un-check the option to empty recycle bin. People who have problems with it often don't fully understand extra options the mark.
I understand that the letter writer didn't make changes when (s)he installed it, but there are other possibilities for restore points being deleted.

A Richter
January 8, 2013 11:55 AM

Much more likely, the System Restore has been turned off either for a reason, by someone, or inadvertently, by the user himself. That is why there is one big blank. Else, there would remain at least the most recent restore point since it is untouchable.
Check the settings - not of CCleaner but of System Restore.

January 8, 2013 3:46 PM

"Backup" to another drive, Its that easy, Win 7 even prompts you to do this now. I even use online drives and or cloud based systems. So even if (worse case scenario) the house burns down and i cannot get to my backup drive in time i will still have my family photo's backed up online (my most important files).

January 8, 2013 10:31 PM

I have also found System Restore does not always stay reliably on. I have learned to check Event Viewer early and often, since quite frequently it shows that "SR" as it is called, encountered an error and cut itself off, usually at boot-time. No indication why this happens on some boot-ups but when it does, all prior restore points are erased.

In addition to cutting itself off, using SR to roll back has usually caused a certain amount of unexplained bugginess of the computer following a restore operation.

All that having been said, I personally still prefer to keep SR on. Recently I had a problem with a program update, and was able to use a restore point made earlier that day with complete success.

January 10, 2013 10:12 AM

Don't forget to check the setting for System Restore. There is a slider where you can control how much data to keep. The less data kept, the more older restore points will be deleted.

January 10, 2013 9:35 PM

Ever since I found ERUNT I've totally disabled System Restore. And, periodically, I go and delete old AUTOBACKUPs in my ERUNT folder to free up space.
Ok, with the humongous HDs available today saving space might not be high on your list, but I cut my teeth on a computer running DOS 6 and Win3 with a teeny tiny 32meg HD and I'm still stingy with my bytes. So sue me but I don't like wasting space and System Restore is really, really good at 'using' space. System Restore sucks out loud on ice.
If you don't believe me, you don't believe in Santa Bunny or The Easter Clause.

Comments on this entry are closed.

If you have a question, start by using the search box up at the top of the page - there's a very good chance that your question has already been answered on Ask Leo!.

If you don't find your answer, head out to to ask your question.