How to Restore Previous Versions of Windows 7 Files or System

Have you made changes to your photo or word document but now prefer the former version? Well, now you can learn how to restore previous versions of your files on Windows 7.

Apr 23,2020 • Filed to: Windows Computer Solutions • Proven solutions

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restore previous versions of windows 7

If you are in a situation where you are trying to get back an older version of a file in your Windows 7, you can either restore previous versions of your Windows 7 to get back the files or choose to use a third-party recovery app.

This article will show you how to use both methods to restore previous versions of Windows 7 files, depending on your situation.

Part 1: How to Restore Previous Versions of Windows 7 Files and Folders

First, you need to turn on your system protection by doing the following:

The previous versions can now be accessed to restore Windows 7 files using the steps below:

  1. Start by right-clicking the folder or file you wish to recover. Note that if the file was accidentally deleted and there is no way to get it back from your “Recycle Bin”, then just right-click the folder that had once contained the lost file. Now, go ahead to select “Restore Previous Versions”
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  3. You will be able to see the previous versions here, from either restore points or from “File History”. You will also get to see the “Properties” dialog box of the chosen folder to file. This will be opened to the tab for “Previous Versions”
  4. You can choose the file edition you seek, then select “Restore”. In the warning box that appears, confirm your action and select “OK”.
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    Note that when you choose to “Restore”, the version of the file you presently have will be overwritten. Therefore, it is advisable that you copy the older version you have restored unto your desktop using the “Copy” or “Open” buttons.

    restore previous version windows 7 6

  6. Close the Properties dialog box of the folder or file. Go through and use the older version to be sure it is what you want. If you are satisfied with the contents of the file, you can return it to its original location and delete the recent version.

Part 2: How to Recover Files if No Previous Versions Are Found

The above solution is ideal if you want to restore a single file or a few previous folders. But what if you have a large number of files you wish to restore? What if you are told that there is a better way you can restore previous file versions at once, won’t you jump at the opportunity? Well, be ready to do just that because the Recoverit Data Recovery will give you what you need. Also, it is necessary in situations where you cannot find previous versions of the files you wish to restore. All you need to do with this tool after downloading and installing it, is to follow the three simple steps that shall be explained to you and get back those files, wherever they may have disappeared to.

Recoverit Data Recovery supports the restoration of files in formats that span over a thousand, be it in image form, documents, videos, audios, etc. Because it is compatible with all Windows versions including Windows 7, you can use this app in your Windows 7 system. Therefore, files that have been lost via system crash, no previous versions being found, accidental or intentional deleting, formatted recycle bins, card errors, and many more, can be recovered back with this comprehensive tool.

Follow the steps below to know how to use Recoverit Data Recovery:

Step 1: Select a Location

Go to the location where your folder got missing, select it and click “Start”

recoverit interface

Step 2: Scan the Location

Now that you have clicked “Start”, the selected location will be scanned to find all the files that are meant to be there.

operations during scanning

Step 3: Preview and Save Recovered Files

Peruse through all the files that Recoverit has found for you, then choose to “Recover” them all and save.

preview recovered photos


Part 3: How to Restore Windows 7 to a Previous Windows Installation by Using the Windows.old Folder

This solution is a manual walk-through to Windows 7 previous version using the Windows.old folder. The steps below will guide you in detail and you will be able to fix the problem you are facing in no time:

1. First check if the space on your Windows hard disk will be sufficient and if there is a Windows.old folder by doing the following:

2. Start “Windows Recovery Environment”

3. Make a new Win7 folder and move the Windows 7 folders into it. Do this by typing the following commands in your Command Prompt field and pressing “Enter” after each command:

C:

Md Win7

Move Windows Win7\Windows

Move “Program Files” “Win7\Program Files”

Move Users Win7\Users

Attrib –h –s –r ProgramData

Move ProgramData Win7\ProgramData

Rd “Documents and Settings”

After typing each a command and pressing enter, you may receive a message like “The system cannot find the file specified”. Do not let this deter you; just continue with the next command and so on.

4. Move or copy the contents of the Windows.old folder using the following set of commands. Remember to continue with the commands even if you get the message “The system cannot file the file specified”:

move/y c:\Windows.old\Windows c:\

move/y “c:\Windows.old\Program Files” c:\

move/y c:\Windows.old\ProgramData c:\

move/y c:\Windows.old\Users c:\

move /y “c:\Windows.old\Documents and Settings” c:\

5. Restore the previous Windows installation’s boot sector by inputting any of the commands that follow, depending on what applies to your specific situation (for instance, “D:” is the letter representing the drive in this case.

6. If the previously installed Windows is Windows XP or Windows 2000, then restore the boot.ini file using the following commands. Remember to press “Enter” after each command is inputted:

Attrib –h –s –r boot.ini.saved

Copy boot.ini.saved boot.ini

7. Exit the Command Prompt field and restart your system:

Bonus Tip on Setting Up and Configuring Previous Versions


The Bottom Line

It may come as a shock to you, but sometimes using the “Undo” shortcut may simply not work because of the change in files versions or the time frame. With the key pointers in this article, you can now effectively recover previous versions of Windows 7 files using “restore previous versions” or the Recoverit Data Recovery tool.

Theo Lucia

chief Editor

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