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Windows Vista: How to manage disk space allocated for System Restore?


Windows Vista System Restore creates restore points (just like XP) before certain updates are applied to your system. What has changed between XP and Vista is the ability of the end user to set/change the amount of hard drive space used by System Restore through the System Properties option on the Performance and Maintenance menu. In Vista the GUI tool is no longer present. VSSAdmin is command-line tool used to manage the Volume Shadow Copy Service and in turn System Restore. Keep in mind that Vista will store up to 64 shadow copies and will replace old ones with new based on space limitations. 

To launch VSSAdmin, you need to open Command Prompt window with elevated privileges. Right click on the Command Prompt shortcut and select the Run as Administrator. Please refer to the list of the commands below to manage VSSAdmin:
vssadmin list shadows – displays list of all the restore points currently saved on the PC
vssadmin list volumes – lists the volumes that are eligible for shadow copies
vssadmin list shadowstorage – demonstrates you how much disk space is currently used by shadow copies, space allocated for shadow copies, and the maximum limit for shadow copies.
vssadmin resize shadowstorage – resizes the space allocated for shadow copies
·         /for= followed by a drive letter  - volume for which the maximum amount of storage space is to be resized
·         /on= again followed by a drive letter - storage volume
·         /maxsize= followed by a value - maximum amount of space that can be used for storing shadow copies (make sure that you use appropriate units here: KB for kilobytes, MB for megabytes, GB for gigabytes, TB for terabytes)
An Example of the above command is as follows: vssadmin resize shadowstorage /for=c: /on=c: /maxsize=10GB