System restore problem, among other things

By lord_alphathon_iv ·
Hi all,

I noticed today that I cannot create restore points on my main computer. The automatic creation doesn't seem to be working either, which I noticed when, probably about a week or two ago, I had to boot into safe mode due to a screw up causing windows to blue screen on booting (which afaik is completely unrelated to my current problem, the cause of which was a network bridge between my wireless adapter and a virtualbox host interace), but while there, I noticed I had no restore points, which I put down to the recent install of SP1, but when I tried to create one today, there were still none.

When I try to create a restore point, it sits with a loading bar for ages saying "Creating a restore point...", then after about 10 minutes, stops with the following error message:

The restore point could not be created for the following reason:
The creation of a shadow copy has timed out. Try again this operation (0x81000101)
Please try again.

While not the same problem, I am also having problems with installers which may be relevent. A lot of installers (not all, but most) take an incredibly long time to complete. They usually sit at 0% for ages (anywhere from 5 minutes to half an hour) then begin to actually install, but more slowly than you'd expect usually, especially with the specs of my system. I don't know if it is related, but as the problem with the creation of a shadow copy is a timeout I thought I'd mention it. Also, if anyone knows how to solve it then please share as it rather annoying (nothing more really, but still...).

Also, I have noticed recently that my CPU usage has gone through the roof. Normally after startup it remains stable at between 0% and 5%, when idle. But after a while, the CPU stars getting consumed more and more. According to resource monitor it is mainly being consumed by svchost (at the time of writing, svchost was using 98% of the CPU, when all that was running was this firefox window and background tasks). As you can imagine, this is a little concerning. It doesn't seem to be affecting the performance though. These figures are coming from task manager, resource monitor and the screen on my Logitech G15 Keyboard

I have tried google for all 3 of these problems, but to no avail, and virus and malware scans all come out clean.

Other possibly relevent system details:
OS - Windows Vista Ultimate SP1 32-Bit
CPU - Intel Core 2 Quad 2.4GHz (Q6600)
RAM - 4GB DDR2 (I am aware that 32-bit OSs cannot utilise it all)
MOBO - Asus P5K-Premium

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All Answers

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Have you had

by Jacky Howe In reply to Didn't help

any problems with Windows Updates. Check the error messages associated with any failures. Check the error code and instructions on the first link.

Support for Windows Update:

Start a free Windows Update support incident request:

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No I havn't

by lord_alphathon_iv In reply to Have you had far as I know anyway. Windows update has never thrown up an error code anyway.

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Is it possible

by Sue T In reply to Didn't help

to reinstall Vista overtop of your current installation? I haven't tried it but I came across an article on vista recovery the other day that was very detailed but I must have put it on my other computer because I can't find it right now. Anyway you are supposed to be able to do alot of things in recovery console that you can't do in XP so I don't know if there is something there that can help you or not. I'll check my other computer tomorrow and see if I can find that article.

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I see that you're happy with Vista

by nepenthe0 In reply to Didn't help

By this time, you have reached a level of frustration which should undermine your confidence in this operating system. I recommend that you obtain XP Pro while you can (Microsoft plans to pull it from the marketplace on 30 June'0. The XP SP3 will be posted on 29 Apr'08. A stand-alone XP Pro SP2 retails for $299, but may be a bargain for y'all in UK with the current exchange rate.

XP Pro is versatile, stable, but bloated. TR has excellent downloads and 'white papers' that suggest which services to disable for faster performance. I have 2 computers with XP Pro, both Sony, which are blazing fast and rock stable. Greg Shultz' TR papers are excellent resources.

I purchased my Sony computers Nov'06 as 'Vista compatible' machines, and when Vista became available, I performed a 'clean install' on the desktop. It was 2 weeks of total frustration, an experience that many others have shared. All my aggravations ceased once I jettisoned Vista and reinstalled XP Pro. Fortunately, I had preserved the tweaked XP Pro configuration with Norton Ghost on an external hard drive.

Your window of choice is rapidly closing, so bite the bullet and install XP Pro. You won't be sorry.

Rick/Portland, OR

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Oh really?

by lord_alphathon_iv In reply to I see that you're happy w ...

Actually I'm alot happier with vista than I was with XP. The only things that really frustrated me with vista from the beginning were the fact that I couldn't run Dungeon Keeper (which being over 10 years old isn't really surprising), the lack of IPX support (oh boo hoo I can't play Red Alert 2 over lans) and the UAC, which I semi-diasbled anyway. The number of problems I had with my old comp were far greater than I've ever had with vista, and usually more crippling to the computer. Anyway, I have a copy/licence of XP Pro that I've never used anyway (got it from ma Uni for free) which I intended to dual-boot with vista, but never got round to it. I am not prepared to install it over the top anyway. Heck I'm hardly willing to do the same with Vista, so I'm not gunna do the same with XP, especially just to get back system restore. BTW, my vista install is totally stable.

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Dual booting - XP and Vista

by nepenthe0 In reply to Oh really?

Check out Greg Schultz' excellent discussion of dual booting (XP/Vista) in his 8 Feb'07 posting:

I actually tried that, installing Vista Home Premium in a separate partition, but was unable to boot with Vista after installing SP1 beta. Upon reformatting the new partition and reinstalling Vista, dual booting worked fine. Alas, Vista downloads managed to corrupt XP (grrrr) so I suspect there are issues that Greg Schultz has not addressed.

From today's posting, you imply that you have never installed XP Pro, so I infer that the issues you are having reflect problems with XP Home. If my inference be correct, my suggestion is the same as before: try a 'clean install' of XP Pro. Once you have it tweaked and tamed, I think you'll be very satisfied. The SP3 download expected 29 Apr'08 is a 'rollup' of all security patches issued since SP2. Beta tests indicate a 10% performance boost with SP3, and XP Pro performance is superior to Vista by virtually all recent comparative tests.

My XP Pro configuration is completely loaded in 40 seconds, following which the CPU idles at 1% capacity with <200MB loaded into RAM. I have an Intel Pentium-D 3.2GHz CPU, 800MHz bus, 2GB RAM, 300GB SATA HD. All my applications work fine, at dazzling speed.

Richard M. Brown, MD/JD
Portland, OR USA

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Never on this computer...

by lord_alphathon_iv In reply to Oh really?

"From today's posting, you imply that you have never installed XP Pro, so I infer that the issues you are having reflect problems with XP Home."

Well the current problems are with Vista Ultimate, but my previous computer had XP Pro on it. I have simply never gotten around to installing XP on my current system.

"If my inference be correct, my suggestion is the same as before: try a 'clean install' of XP Pro."

Thing is I'm not willing to completelly start over just to get system restore to function. The closest I'm likelly to come is repair installing Vista. It's not the fact that it's XP thats putting me off, its the whole idea of a clean install. Also, it's not really solving the problem, its just ignoring it and starting again, which is a bad atitude in my opinion.

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by Jacky Howe In reply to System restore problem, a ...

you tried to run the Restore in Safe Mode.
What do you mean that you partly disabled UAC.

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I seem to remember

by lord_alphathon_iv In reply to Have

trying at one point, but I can't remember. I might as well give it a go though. By patialy disabled I meen it is set so that is only on for non-admins. At the moment I have no other accounts on here other than mine though (which is an admin) so essentially it's off.

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Something else

by Jacky Howe In reply to I seem to remember

to try, to check if it is a profile problem.
Use this to enable the Administrators Account, then log off and log back on as the Administrator and see if it works.

1. Go to Start, All programs, Accessories, then right click command prompt and click Run as Administrator.
2. Once the command prompt opens type this command and press enter.
net user administrator /active:yes
3. This command will enable the hidden Administrator account in Windows Vista. Log off your account and log on as the Administrator.

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