How Do I Restore to a Previous Date on a Computer?

By Tommy Charles

The Windows Restore Point feature provides a safety net against catastrophic failure of the operating system by periodically saving the computer's state. You can then call upon these saves, known as "restore points," in the case of a severe malware infection, system file corruption or hardware driver damage. Once invoked, the restore point reverts the computer to a particular previous state, but not without leaving some programs unaffected. Accessing the system restore function is a straightforward process.

Step 1

Click "Start" and type "System Restore" into the search box.

Step 2

Click the "System Restore" result.

Step 3

Provide your Administrator password when prompted.

Step 4

Click the "Recommended Restore" option, then "Next."

Step 5

Review the list of programs and files that will be affected, and click "Finish" if acceptable.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you are not offered a "Recommended Restore," you can still choose one of the available restore points by clicking "Next." Click one of the restore points, then click "Scan for affected programs" to view how the restore point will affect your system.
  • Any programs that were installed after the restore point was created may be lost. The same goes for files and folders.