Restore your computer from a system image backup


You can use a system image to restore the contents of your computer if your hard disk or entire computer ever stops working. For more information about system images, see What is a system image?

Warning

  • When you restore your computer from a system image, it's a complete restoration. You can't choose individual items to restore, and all of your programs, system settings, and files are replaced with those on the system image.

Before starting, make sure that the removable media that your backup is stored on is available, if applicable. Also, make sure that the disk that you're restoring the backup to is the same size or larger than the disk that you backed up.

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To restore using the Recovery Control Panel (recommended)

If your computer is still working and you can access Control Panel, or if you want to restore your system image backup onto a different computer, follow these steps:

  1. Open Recovery by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Control Panel. In the search box, type recovery, and then click Recovery.

  2. Click Advanced recovery methods.

  3. Click Use a system image you created earlier to recover your computer, and then follow the steps.

To restore using preinstalled recovery options

If you can't access Control Panel and you don't have a Windows installation disc or a system repair disc, use this method to restore your computer:

  1. Restart your computer using the computer's power button.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • If your computer has only one operating system installed, hold down the F8 key as your computer restarts. You need to press F8 before the Windows logo appears. If the Windows logo appears, try again.

    • If your computer has more than one operating system installed, use the arrow keys to highlight the operating system that you want to start, and then press F8.

  3. On the Advanced Boot Options screen, use the arrow keys to highlight Repair your computer, and then press Enter.

  4. Select a keyboard layout, and then click Next.

  5. Select a user name, type the password, and then click OK.

  6. On the System Recovery Options menu, click System Image Recovery, and then follow the instructions.

To restore using a Windows installation disc or a system repair disc

If you can't access Control Panel, you can restore your computer using a Windows installation disc or a system repair disc (if you have one).

  1. Insert the installation disc or system repair disc.

  2. Restart your computer using the computer's power button.

  3. If prompted, press any key to start the computer from the installation disc or system repair disc.

    If your computer is not configured to start from a CD or DVD, check the information that came with your computer. You might need to change your computer's BIOS settings. For information about which settings to change, check your computer manufacturer's website. For more information about BIOS, see BIOS: frequently asked questions.

  4. Choose your language settings, and then click Next.

  5. Click Repair your computer.

    This step only applies if you are using a Windows installation disc.

  6. Select a recovery option, and then click Next



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