So I can disable System Restore on my USB External Disk by going to

System Properties -> System Restore -> (selecting the drive) -> Settings -> Turn off System Restore on this drive

and this works wonderfully my own system.

But can I set an option (via an autorun.inf or some other mechanism) that will prevent System Restore from storing data on this drive when plugged into other Windows machines?

  • Does formatting it as FAT32 prevent System Restore data from being added?
    – Ian Boyd
    Oct 30, 2009 at 15:42

3 Answers 3


According to this post from the Microsoft Product Manager for System Restore, this is not possible. It looks like you will need to manually do this on each system.


Does formatting it as FAT32 not prevent system restore data from being added?

TODO: Convert to comment once i have 50 cred


I am pretty sure this is not possible by simply adding some sort of file to the drive. Although, I have never personally had a problem with other PC's trying to use an external drive for system restore automatically after I plug it in.

I have heard that if you unplug the drive while windows is running, without doing a "Safe Removal of Hardware", windows will not use that drive for System Restore though.

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