How to System Restore From a DOS Command

by Dave Wilson
computer image by blaine stiger from

System Restore is a Microsoft Windows feature that can reset the Windows operating system to a previous configuration in the event that a change to the system has caused issues that render the system unusable. If Windows is unable to normally boot or there are issues starting the Windows desktop, you can still access and run System Restore from a command prompt.

Step 1

Reboot the computer and then press and hold the "F8" key before the Windows splash screen displays.

Step 2

Highlight "Safe Mode With Command Prompt" in the menu that appears, by using the "up" and "down" arrow keys on the keyboard. Then press the "Enter" key to select the "Safe Mode With Command Prompt" option.

Step 3

Login by typing the administrator account name and password when prompted.

Step 4

Type "%systemroot%\system32\rstrui.exe" on the command prompt and then press the "Enter" key. The System Restore window will appear.

Step 5

Click on a restore point from the list displayed that is dated the day before system instability appeared and then select the "Next" button. Then select the "Finish" button.

Step 6

Select the "Yes" button to confirm that you want to proceed. System Restore will commence and then reboot the computer.

Press the "Enter" key to close the window that appears after boot up that states that the System Restore has completed.


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About the Author

Dave Wilson has been writing technical articles since 1993, including manuals, instructional "how-to" tips and online publications with various websites. Wilson holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles and has Microsoft, Cisco, and ISC2 (CISSP) technical certifications. He also has experience with a broad range of computer platforms, embedded systems, network appliances and Linux.

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