How to Enable System Restore in Group Policy

by Tricia Goss

If a computer's "System Restore" utility is not enabled and there is no way to enable it in "System Properties," it may have originally been disabled in "Group Policy." This was a largely utilized setting in the early days of Windows XP. This is no longer a recommended method for disabling "System Restore," but many older systems were manipulated this way. Even someone who originally disabled "System Restore" in "Group Policy" might have trouble enabling it again as the steps are not simply a reverse of disabling the utility.

Step 1

Click "Start" and then "Run." Type "gpedit.msc" into the "Open" box and click "OK." The "Group Policy Editor" will open.

Step 2

Expand "Computer Configuration." Go to "Administrative Templates" and then "System." Click to select "System Restore" and then select "Disable." Close the Group Policy Editor.

Step 3

Right click "My Computer" and click on "Manage." "Computer Management" will open. Expand "Services and Applications" and click on "Services." Click "System Restore Service" and select "Automatic." Click "Start."

Step 4

Close "Computer Management" and open "Group Policy Editor" again. Set the "System Restore" state to "Not Configured." Close "Group Policy Editor."

Restart the computer. Right click "My Computer" and select "Properties." The "System Restore" tab should be enabled and visible again.


  • You must be logged on to the computer as an administrator to perform these steps.

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About the Author

Tricia Goss' credits include Fitness Plus, Good News Tucson and Layover Magazine. She is certified in Microsoft application and served as the newsletter editor for She has also contributed to The Dollar Stretcher, Life Tips and Childcare Magazine.

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