How to Adjust System Restore Default Timing Parameters

A previous article discussed how to allot space to System Restore. This article will discuss how you can customize the set-up of restore points.

By default, restore points are created every twenty-four hours. These are then saved for 90 days. Although the GUI doesn’t allow the default settings to be altered, this registry tweak is a way around that.

You should be on a Windows XP based machine. You will be making changes to your registry, so a backup should be made before you begin. Note that this tweak uses time measured in seconds. So, one year is equal to 31,536,000 seconds, one day is equal to 86,400 seconds and there are 3600 seconds in an hour.

Here are the instructions to Adjust System Restore’s Default Timing Parameters.

  1. Click Start and go to Run. Enter regedit. This will bring up your registry editor.
  2. Locate the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE folder on the left side of your registry editor. Expand the folder by clicking on the cross icon on the left.
  3. Go to SOFTWARE and expand.
  4. Look for Microsoft. Expand this folder.
  5. Now go to Windows NT and expand.
  6. This will take you to CurrentVersion. Expand CurrentVersion.
  7. Look for System Restore.
  8. Now look at the right hand pane of your registry editor. Look for RPGlobalInterval. If the value is there, go to step eight. If the value is not there, follow the instructions below on how to create RPGlobalInterval.
    • Right click on the right hand side of the registry editor.
    • Select New and then select DWORD.
    • Rename the value to RPGlobalInterval or right click on the new DWORD value and select Rename.
  9. Double click on RPGlobalInterval. A new box will come up.
  10. Enter 1 if you want to enable Adjust System Restore’s Default Timing Parameters. Enter 0 if you want Adjust System Restore’s Default Timing Parameters disabled.
  11. Exit registry and reboot.

Change Restore Point Retention Lifespan

  1. Click Start and go to Run. Enter regedit. This will bring up your registry editor.
  2. Locate the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE folder on the left side of your registry editor. Expand the folder by clicking on the cross icon on the left.
  3. Go to SOFTWARE and expand.
  4. Look for Microsoft. Expand the folder and go to Windows NT.
  5. Expand Windows NT and go to CurrentVersion.
  6. Expand CurrentVersion and go to System Restore.
  7. Now look at the right hand side of the registry editor. Can you find RPLifeInterval? If so, go ahead to step eight. If not, create the value by following the steps below.
    • Right click on the right hand side of the registry editor.
    • Select New and then select DWORD.
    • Rename the new DWORD value RPLifeInterval or right click on the new DWORD value and select Rename.
  8. Double click on RPLifeInterval. A new box will come up.
  9. Enter 0 if you want to disable Change Restore Point Retention Lifespan and enter 1 if you want to enable Change Restore Point Retention Lifespan.
  10. Exit registry and reboot.