System Restore on Windows 7, Vista, XP
The System Restore feature is used to restore the system files on your computer in case they become damaged. Windows System Restore automatically creates restore points daily and any time a significant system event occurs (e.g., application or driver installations). Restore points can also be manually created at your discretion.
If a virus, worm, or Trojan infects a computer, System Restore may back up that virus, worm, or Trojan. Window does not allow outside programs (including anti-virus utilities) to alter files in the System Restore folder. Therefore, virus removal tools cannot remove security threats found within this folder. An infected file within the System Restore folder could potentially be restored onto your computer. Also, virus scans may detect these infected files even after you have removed the threat from your machine.
For these reasons, when applying a virus removal tool, temporarily turn off the System Restore feature. This will allow the removal tool to delete any infected files in the System Restore folder as well.
This document contains the following "Turning Restore On or Off" sections:
Last Updated: 9/20/12