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Returnil Virtual System Premium Edition Giveaway
$24,95
EXPIRED

Giveaway of the day — Returnil Virtual System Premium Edition

Create a copy of your System Partition in memory.
$24,95 EXPIRED
User rating: 798 (75%) 270 (25%) 189 comments

Returnil Virtual System Premium Edition was available as a giveaway on April 25, 2008!

Today Giveaway of the Day
$37.95
free today
The best way to convert any SD/HD/4K video file to the popular MP4 format

The Returnil Virtual System Premium Edition is a powerful virtualization technology that completely mirrors your actual computer setup and it can create a virtual storage disk within your PC where you can save documents, data, and files while using the System Protection feature.

Returnil virtualization technology clones a computer’s System Partition and boots the PC into this system rather than native Windows, allowing you run your applications in a completely isolated environment. Hence the session and all activity, malicious or otherwise, will happen in the virtual environment, not in the real PC environment. If the PC is attacked or gets infected, all you need to do is to simply reboot the PC to erase all changes. After reboot, the system will be restored to its original state, as if nothing ever happened. All of this without sacrificing computer performance or usability while helping to reduce technical support intervention and the need for routine maintenance.

System Requirements:

Windows XP/2003 Server/Vista 32-bit; Processor by OS: XP: 300 MHz; 2003 Server: 750 MHz; Vista: 800 MHz; Memory by OS: XP: 128 MB; 2003 Server: 128 MB; Vista: 512 MB; Hard Disk: 25 MB free HDD space (minimal configuration)

Publisher:

Returnil

Homepage:

http://www.returnilvirtualsystem.com/index_files/rvsbusiness.htm

File Size:

2.24 MB

Price:

$24,95

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Comments on Returnil Virtual System Premium Edition

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#189

@#184
Hi MrScreensaver,
We have recently identified an issue with the current release and Vista hibernation. The solution is already in testing and we will be releasing hot fix versions of both the 2.0 Premium and the Personal Editions as soon as the tests prove stability. This issue does not effect XP and Server 2003. For the time being our recommendation is to deactivate hibernation in Vista while using RVS protection until the new builds are released. Please forgive any inconvenience this may have caused...

@#185
Hi Zhotdoge3,
I replied to your post in the General Discussions forum as well but want to make sure those reading this thread will also be aware of the answer. Terminating the RVS GUI (Returnil.exe) will have no effect on the status of the System Protection/Session Lock feature. It is simply a 32 bit program that allows the user to access the features and functions in Returnil.You can test this by turning on Session Lock, exit or terminate the RVS GUI and then repeat your file saving test. The test file will be gone at reboot as expected.

This is also true if you simply log out of your account but do not restart the system. Further, the protection will still be on should any other user of the computer log into their accounts after you log off.

@#187
Hi Fubar,
I did some looking around using those keys as reference but could not find anything conclusive. Doing a search using "HKU\S-1-5-21" and "\Software\Classes\CLSID\" turned up quite a few hits (obviously) on security and cleaning forums but the two strings were never matched. This means that there were entries in the logs shown for each string separately but none together. HKU though is specific to the current user rather than being a global key (HKLM). Does anyone other than you have access to the computer?

Mike

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#188

For users don't read instruction like me,

When you turn On the protection, it will start cache the activities, and I ran into disk low(error of disk available 0 keep pop up), in a hurry to stop the continuous error, I turn it off..guess what, it really works, everything turn back to days before ! wallpaper..etc, including all the downloaded and saved document.

Make sure you store important data away on external volume before you change status of this protection application, it would wipe clean so sure.

Reply   |   Comment by BigMac  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#187

#183, Mike W., I created a list of the specific unusualregistry changes for your developers, but personally I'm satisfied that Returnil isn't causing a problem with these entries, even though its installation triggers a change in them.

(Note to GOTD--these registry entries are not related in any way to giveaway registration, I never post those. In fact, these entries don't belong to Returnil, but its installation is causing them to change.)

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#186

Great software...a must have for everyone who is worried about dirty USB drives, susp email downloads.....works like a charm. Way to go GAOTD

Reply   |   Comment by Gautham  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#185

Returnil look like some like it good test ok fist I download some files to a folder name it new folder RT#1,& make some notpad,restart it gone so that good it worked,not like the restart to Change off to on to off,try Task Manager > Explorer End Task it not like so I try Returnil End Task the end of Returnil Restart it back ok try End task Returnil the end of him so spyware can kill it not so good need to run as a services so you can not kill off like Spyware Terminator or Webroot spysweeper

Reply   |   Comment by hotdoge3  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#184

I came back to see if anyone else is experiencing any problems with the newest verion 2008 that was offered. It seems that when I use the file manager and the PC sits for an extended amout of time I keep getting write errors when windows shuts down. This is VERY annoying and wanted to know if anyone had a fix for this yet. I have used Returnil for a while and love it and have waited for them in incorporate a file management system like they have. However I can't seem to get past the errors at windows shut down. Any others experience this yet?

(When I say extended amount of time I am only talking 3 to 4 hours of non use - idle time)

Reply   |   Comment by MrScreensaver  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#183

@#182

The fact remains however that something is making changes to very specific keys which you are monitoring. Are there any similarities between RVS and the other application you mention? This may be a good starting point to try and track down what is making the changes to the registry and why it is doing that. At the very least I agree with you that it is strange and a deeper investigation might be prudent here...

Mike

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#182

#180, Mike W., I searched through the installation traces of other software on my system (Windows is supposed to index them for searching, but doesn't), and found out that the keys in question were recently added by another application, probably related to a server (in the general sense, not network) component. Returnil was the first installation since then to cause the keys to change. One other installation since Returnil has also caused the keys to change. Therefor, it appears that some (few) installations are triggering a change, but I'm assuming it's harmless, and in any event, it's not specifically related to anything that Returnil's installation is doing, so Returnil's installation does appear to be clean. Since the keys are related to a specific application (and as I stated, also system dependent), that would explain why I couldn't find any information about them.

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#181

Thumbs up. I like the program. I am using it now. I do have one suggestion. When turning off the program, or rebooting, it would be nice to be reminded with a popup that we have the option to save system changes. Sandboxie does. Thanks

Reply   |   Comment by ofdcwb  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#180

Follow up @#177

Hi Fubar,
I hope you will forgive the delay in my reply, but I needed to check with development to make sure it was accurate. RVS only makes changes to the registry at installation and then only to properly register our kernel mode drivers with Windows. This is required for Windows to load them as kernel modules.

The changes are limited to HKLM\...\CurrentControlSet\Services key under RVSystem and RVDisk. Any further changes would have no meaning as any changes made to the registry while RVS’s System Protection is on would be lost at reboot.

Any other changes made to the registry are not due to anything RVS has done or will do as all preferences, the password, and other settings are handled and stored within RVS itself for exactly the reason as described above.

Can you describe the changes you are seeing in greater detail?

Thanks
Mike

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#179

@#177

Fubar,
This is a placeholder reply to let you know I have read your post. It is a long one so please give me a while to compose it and post it back.

Thanks
Mike

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#178

@#176

Hi CS,
Shoot us an e-mail at the support address and we will get you sorted. As for your question regarding installation:

Yes, you must install RVS within the System Partition to work properly. This is also true for multi-boot systems where you need to install the software within each OS separately. This is not an issue with a normally registered version as we allow multiple installations with a single license for that type of configuration where it is on a single computer.

We are also working to refine our Home user licensing to include mutli-computer licensing...

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#177

#163, Mike W., I'm pleased to see you're still here and responding. As usual, your comments were being moderated, and therefor not visible to me, while I was writing my latest post about the registry changes which Returnil makes (I can't give you the post number, because it's in moderation); perhaps you can comment on precisely what Returnil is altering in the registry.

I do understand what Returnil is doing, I wasn't implying that Returnil took snapshots. I was posting in response to Funkster's comparison of GoBack to other system restoration software which takes snapshots, which GoBack didn't do. I do understand that GoBack functioned very differently from Returnil, although both have limited buffer/cache space, and both cache disk changes, not specifically file changes. Actually, Returnil is more constrained by its buffer/cache limit than GoBack was (unless GoBack was set to a forced rollback mode). If you change more data than Returnil can track, operation cannot continue until after a rollback, which clears the cache. If you wrote a file which was larger than GoBack's cache, GoBack would simply flush its cache, so you would lose rollback/recovery capability until it caught up, but system operation would continue normally (and as I wrote, under normal operation it removed old data from its cache as new data was added, so the cache size simply limited how far back into the past you could recover, from the present).

The new ability of Returnil to save changes to the real disk is a welcome addition, and removes much of the objections I had to the earlier giveaway. It still needs to cover multiple drives/partitions, which I understand is being implemented. While Returnil is becoming a useful tool, I'll never be a cheerleader, not after many years of use of GoBack. Returnil freezes/returns the system to a specific point in time, with the new exception that it can keep all or specific changes. GoBack was just the opposite, always tracking changes, never freezing the system state (unless that mode was selected), but keeping a log of all write activity (with user-selectable filtering) and process starts, which the user could easily check for problems, and rollback (or forward, after a rollback) to almost any selected point in time (which was still in the cache), or recover files or versions of files from selected times (it had several methods of file and version selection and recovery). What GoBack did was necessarily resource-intensive; Returnil has the advantage of higher performance.

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#176

Hi Mike!
Somebody above commented that this software must be installed on the same partition/drive as the one you want to protect. Is this true? I did not install on my OS partition, C:\, but my Home Page for RVS states that RVS IS protecting C:\[\Device\HarddiskVolume1]. Please clarify this point for us.

Also, I'm curious to know more details about the differences betweeen your Premium and Regular versions of RVS.

Finally, I was disappointed to find that one of the changes, stemming from the learning curve occurring AFTER I installed, was impossible. To change the cache behavior they make it clear that I will be obligated to re-install, without explaining that this would not be possible just after my installation. Wouldn't my license expire at the same time next year regardless of my second or subsequent installations of the software. In any case I won't be buying this software because these unknowns, cache and which partition/disk to install, prevent me from effectively evaluating the product.

Reply   |   Comment by CS  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#175

@#171

Hi Fubar,
I do not want to "ding" your posts, just point out some things that help clarify what RVS is doing as we want our users to be comfortable with our software and know that we will do our best to address their concerns regardless of what that concern may be.

"...It would be helpful if someone with more registry expertise than I have could comment, but there’s little hope of that given the typical complete lack of people noting any registry-related problems..."

If there are problems we want to know about them and discuss them so we can resolve any concerns or correct issues as required to improve the software. You are both encouraged and welcomed to join us at CCSP and we look forward to your feedback...

Thanks
Mike

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#174

@#162
"damn missed this one =["

Hi Dan,
Maybe not ;) We plan to begin a new Public Beta series soon to introduce new features we are working on to address the growing anti-ISR efforts being developed in the Chinese Malware/hacker communities. We provide free testing licenses for our testers and award licensing at the end of the Beta to those who actively participate and provide feedback that helps us improve the software.

We will announce the new Beta at our CCSP Betas forum first, so if you are interested please add thie following link to your bookmarks and we look forward to your participation:

http://www.castlecops.com/f289-Returnil_Betas.html

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#173

@#158
"...It’s the registry changes which concern me the most, though."

Hi Fubar,
Please take the time to look at each change in detail as this will allow you to become comfortable with the changes RVS makes when it is installed. The changes however are very light and only made for what is absolutely necessary for RVS to do its job.

If you find anything of concern, please do not hesitate to contact us or start a thread at our official support forums at CastleCops (dot) com and we will be more than happy to address your concerns for the benefit of everyone with similar questions.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#172

@#156
"What happens when it is on and I save files using Office. Do they get saved ot when I reboot they will be gone? Thanks"

Hi Vin,
If you save the file to your System Partition, the changes you have made will be lost at restart of your computer. If you create and save the file this way and only log out of your account rather than restart your computer, the files will remain until you do a complete restart.

This is the main reason for inclusion of the Virtual Partition as anything saved within the VP will remain after reboot because it is seen as an alternate partition like another drive that is not part of your System Partition (where Windows is installed). This is a convenience for those having a single partition on their systems.

If you need to save these documents in the System Partition you can alternately use the File Manager, drag and drop the file to your RVS toolbar, or right click the file itself and then select "Commit to disk" from the menu options. The new file or the edited file will then be saved to disk with System Protection on.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#171

I'm always amused when people ding my comments regarding potential problems, when they have no understanding of what those potential problems are. My comment #158 was referring to very unusual registry changes which Returnil made, specifically to 48-digit decimal values (a rare event). This is potentially serious because it didn't create new entries, it altered existing ones, and Windows uses 48-digit decimal entries for security-related items, such as password hashes. I haven't been able to determine precisely what the registry entries are used for; it's a potential problem if it altered security-related entries which another application was using, and it's still a potential problem if it isn't security-related. It would be helpful if someone with more registry expertise than I have could comment, but there's little hope of that given the typical complete lack of people noting any registry-related problems. I'm not going to post the entries in question because they're system-dependent, and anyone who hasn't noticed the changes isn't qualified to comment on them (i.e., if you knew anything about the registry, you would be doing installation traces and checking them).

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#170

@#153,
"My only install issues was that I un-checked the auto-startup option at boot’s and log-on’s, but this program decided to ‘automatically’ try re-setting this option again. WinPatrol gave me a warning and I stopped it again. Will see what happens at re-boot. Since of this late hour, I will not be able to try this program until tomorrow."

Hi Kim,
The RVS driver must start and will always start before Windows in what is called the Pre-Executable environment to do what it needs to do. This is true of whether the system protection is on or off and is an important prerequsite to proper functioning the Session Lock feature that allows you to turn on System Protection during the current logon session without the requirement of a reboot to enter the protected mode (or as some refer to it, the "shadow" mode).

RVS contains nothing questionable and we invite everyone to put it through its paces to prove that for themselves. Trust is not built by words or me telling you what it does, but by the users testing for themselves that what I or anyone else here says is true.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#169

Correction to previous post. Sorry Kyon, I meant @#150

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#168

@#151
Hi Kyon,
"now there’s nothing on my desktop except my documents and my computer.
when i went to C:\docs and settings\…\desktop they all were still there, i did changed the desktop path to default in the SYSTEM FOLDER RELOCATION TOOL. When I try to move the icons from C:\…\desktop to the “real” desktop it says : “The destination does not support long file name”?"

This is one of the quirks with moving system folders like My Desktop (XP) or Desktop (Vista). When you move the folder, you are only moving it for the current user and not all users which is why some shortcuts do not show. To correct this, you have to copy the files from the old location for the desktop and then paste them manually into the new folder location for them to show as expected.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#167

@#149
Hi peli11,
"I’d like to recommend the authors of Returnil to state clearly and explicitly (in installation program and manual too) that Returnil MUST be installed on dive C: (the system partition) or even better don’t allow in installation program other drive than C: to be set."

In Step #4 of the installation page in the manual we show a picture of the System Partition only (in this case "C:\") but you are correct that this could be made clearer. Thanks for the feedback on this and we will get it updated in the next Beta series and the site PDF manual.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#166

@#146
Hi AxCut,
"I have the previous version ( the business edition) offered here installed and it works fine. It does not appear to have a one-year time limit as today’s offering does."

You should have received an upgrade notice when 2.0 was released to your registered e-mail address with new Serial Number and download link. If you did not receive this notice, please send an e-mail to the support address with your cleverbridge reference number and we will get that information to you ASAP.

The previous version has a similar limitation but does not include the improved reporting of the license period in its GUI which we upgraded in the 2.0 series.

"Is it possible to have both versions installed so I can choose which one I want to run? If not, do you recommend uninstalling the business edition before installing the new one?"

No, you must uninstall all previous versions before you install the new.

"When I installed the business edition I chose not to create a virtual disk and I could not find a way to create one afterwards. Is this also a ‘feature’ of the pro edition?"

All versions below 2.0 do not include the new repair feature we added to the 2.0 series. This repair feature allows you to create a new Virtual Partition, recreate your disk cache (if applicable), and enter new registration information as required without going through the entire uninstall/reinstall process.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#165

I missed this too...


RETURNIL ...when are you going to returnil here again?

Reply   |   Comment by Brian  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#164

@#145
Hello pkt,
Sorry for the late reply on this. It is difficult to diagnose your situation from a limited posting here. If possible, please shoot us an e-mail using the support address or we can continue your report and followup at our forums if you prefer.

Support (at) Returnilsoftware (dot) com

Forums link:
http://www.castlecops.com/f288-Returnil_Virtual_System_Release.html

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#163

@#143
Hi Fubar,
I understand what you are saying and in some respects you are correct about the effect RVS has when the System Protection is on but you miss what is actually happening. RVS does not use imaging so does not create or carry a "snapshot" of the entire System Partition. This is both unnecessary and wasteful of resources for what the program is actually doing.

Snapshots indicate that the program is filtering and monitoring the file system which RVS does not need to do. StarPilot in #141 comes as close to a general description as I have seen so far but it needs some clarification.

RVS quite simply is in control of the disk not the file system. Further, it does this while still making Windows believe that it is in control of the System Partition. This is why Windows works seemlessly while RVS protection is on and why RVS does not need to clone the entire System Partition, only that which is changed at any given moment "on-the-fly" or as specified by the user through the use of the Real System Explorer.

The biggest issue I see frequently is that those who are familiar with ISR are hampered by their understanding of what has been done in the past. Also there is the fact that this type of technology stagnated for several years outside of very complex and specialized development for its traditional market (corporate, cafes, etc). We have worked to push the technology and try to force the industry to start thinking rather than reacting.

Also ISR is not a silver bullet in and of itself. It is a piece of the puzzle, but an extremely important piece INMNSHO. And this is as an integral part of a layered approach to PC security.

Reply   |   Comment by Mike W.  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#162

damn missed this one =[

Reply   |   Comment by dan  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#161

after using it for one day, I really like this tool very much.

Reply   |   Comment by Dunny  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#160

Unfortunately, for those who have problems with installers creating shortcuts, it doesn't install.:(
It gives an error saying something like "Specified module could not be found, removing installed files."
No thumbs up or down.

Reply   |   Comment by lmaonaise  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#159

Excellent tool. Like the simplicity or use..Gets my thumbs up

Reply   |   Comment by Rick Duesbury  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#158

When my PC wasn't recording anything, I installed this (on Vista). There were 2 (or 4, or 8, ...depending on how many duplicates you count) changed registry entries which definitely concern me.

I went with the disk cache (in order to allow saving) with a 4 GB size. It actually created two files, so 8 GB is as much as GoBack used to take, with far less utility and protection (only a single partition, only on-demand back to a single time-point).

I turned the toolbar off, it's always-on-top. Considering how much space the files take, I may switch to a memory cache, but then I'll lose the ability to save all changes. It's the registry changes which concern me the most, though.

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#157

very good,i come from china,i like the website,i hope you will publish more good software and give a variety of kinds of software.thanks

Reply   |   Comment by chao su  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#156

What happens when it is on and I save files using Office. Do they get saved ot when I reboot they will be gone? Thanks

Reply   |   Comment by Vin  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#155

Here the helpful Install & Product Manual ...
http://www.returnilvirtualsystem.com/index_files/ReturnilVirtualSystemPremiumEdition-Manual.pdf

Reply   |   Comment by e-t-c  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#154

Pretty slick! I had to read the description twice my age-petrified self, but it's much simpler to say it's a Runtime Jail. Only it has icing like passwords on access to itself (i.e. exits) via a 2-pane file manager (see also: F) and a little partition to let it play in.

For all the people who found a quick 'n dirty way to code the apps they'd love to use, this is ready-bake way to check how dirty; what happens when you feed it Chinese and other Unicode filenames; whether it plays well with Norton Recidivists; whether it would hang something (Explorer, something by the GalCiv creators, whatever); and whether it uninstalls to GSA spec. Or if you just want to be or hire a pen tester, have them fight their way out of the VM, I suppose.

Reply   |   Comment by Steve Nordquist  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#153

"Just remember to disable it when you are installing GiveAway software or you will loose it on the next reboot. ;-)

Comment by anonymous — April 25th, 2008 at 4:32 am"

This "disk cache" installation on Vista Home Basic with 512MB ram is running smoothly with all four of the following browsers loaded to GOTD at the same time: Firefox, Flock, SeaMonkey, Safari. Firefox is the only one which runs a bit slower. The save for real option is a nice feature; here's a suggestion for improvement - virtual re-boot would provide a true vPC environment. As it is, I like it. Thanks team GOTD!

Reply   |   Comment by VOID Phoenix  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#152

Thank you Returnil and GAOTD for today's offer. The dsl download,registration, and setup took under 6 minutes on Windows XP.

My only install issues was that I un-checked the auto-startup option at boot's and log-on's, but this program decided to 'automatically' try re-setting this option again. WinPatrol gave me a warning and I stopped it again. Will see what happens at re-boot. Since of this late hour, I will not be able to try this program until tomorrow.

Thank you for all the great comments - and to the comment on the 'instruction' PDF at the maker website and to mic #116 regarding downloading one-hour trial games ... I do this also, so this program offer will make my life so much easier. Thank you.

Reply   |   Comment by Kim  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#151

Registration problem

I've input the serial number many times and restarted but still shows the program a trail version. Any advice?

Reply   |   Comment by Terry  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#150

now there's nothing on my desktop except my documents and my computer.
when i went to C:\docs and settings\...\desktop they all were still there, i did changed the desktop path to default in the SYSTEM FOLDER RELOCATION TOOL. When I try to move the icons from C:\...\desktop to the "real" desktop it says : "The destination does not support long file name"?

Reply   |   Comment by kyon  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#149

I'd like to recommend the authors of Returnil to state clearly and explicitly (in installation program and manual too) that Returnil MUST be installed on dive C: (the system partition) or even better don't allow in installation program other drive than C: to be set.
It may seem to be quite obvious and natural, because otherwise the program and it's corresponding files would not be protected,
BUT consider this situation:
I have two physical drives, having much more free space on the drive G:, which I added later, so for more than 1 year I install everything there, and so I did automatically without thinking about with Returnil too.
It took me several restarts, i.e more than 1/2 hour to realize, whats wrong! After installing on C: everything is OK of course, and Returnil works exellently, as expected.

Reply   |   Comment by peli11  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#148

I downloaded and installed. It says it expires 5-2009. Does it?

Reply   |   Comment by William  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#147

@#56:

Several dictionaries all say that "viruses" is the plural form of "virus". Sorry, but the word virus just doesn't make any sense as "virii". It's nonexistent as an entry.

On topic:
This is really great software, best I've seen here in a while.

Reply   |   Comment by theuber43  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#146

A few questions for Mike W from Returnil.

I have the previous version ( the business edition) offered here installed and it works fine. It does not appear to have a one-year time limit as today's offering does.

Is it possible to have both versions installed so I can choose which one I want to run? If not, do you recommend uninstalling the business edition before installing the new one?

I saw some instructions that seem to allow to install one over the other, like turning the protection off, or even just exiting the previous version. Which method do you recommend, uninstalling or just turning the software off.

When I installed the business edition I chose not to create a virtual disk and I could not find a way to create one afterwards. Is this also a 'feature' of the pro edition?

I appreciate the fact that you are here providing feedback. It is a rare occurrence and almost always welcome.

AxCut

Reply   |   Comment by AxCut  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#145

To Mike W.
I chose disk caching and was trying session lock just now. Then I clicked 'update selected file', to play safe, even though I did not change anything this time round. Just testing, as I am forgrtful at times. Horrors, I had a blue screen - things happened too fast for me to note all the details on that screen. Panic!
Then came the black screen - I had to run windows normally. Luckily my pc was able to re-start, with the 'windows recovered from unexpected shutdown' message. But, no help could be found.
Could you please enlighten as to what I did wrongly? Does it mean that if nothing's been changed, we should not 'update selected file'?
I went through this again, and got the same blue screen. :P
Would really appreciate your help. Thanks!

Reply   |   Comment by pkt  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#144

It is a very happy day for me. I am lucky to find such a cool program. Thanks the Reruenil Team. Thanks the GAOTD.

I like the Returnil very much. Everything happens, evething will be gone after a simple reboot. Great IDEA indeed!

Reply   |   Comment by SunnyK  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#143

#64, Funkster, I'm not going to say much more about GoBack because it's out of production and no longer relevant except from a historical perspective, but I will address your specific comments.

First, I'm glad to see Mike W. here addressing user concerns.

I'm not voting on Returnil, my reasons for not being interested are primarily due to the fact that I have a Media Center PC. If I had a PC which wasn't storing truly massive amounts of data at almost any time, then I would pick up Returnil as a software test tool, although I have no interest in the "always rollback" mode which it can run in and which other products such as SteadyState perform.

Now, back to Funkster's comment. From a performance perspective, GoBack had serious issues. From a functionality perspective, nothing else has ever come close. GoBack never took "snapshots". GoBack had the ability to perform optional forced reverts in a manner which the administrator specified--upon reboot, on a schedule, or when its buffer was full. I had no use for forced reverts, so I never set any of those modes. It's history buffer didn't "fill up", unless you used a forced revert mode, in which case it would revert if the buffer became full. In normal use, it continuously tracked all disk write activity, always allowing file retrieval and rollbacks of recent activity, usually going back a few days. As with System Restore, older history was deleted to make room for newer history (System Restore is based on licensed GoBack technology, but functions completely differently). GoBack was unaffected by reboots and system crashes. Products such as Returnil offer an extremely small subset of GoBack's features, but with much better performance.

I really don't want to take the time right now to go into System Restore, which some people have asked about. As I said, and comments here today and other days indicate, most people have a very poor concept of what it does. First, automatic restore points are set daily if you leave your computer on, are set by Microsoft Installer software installations, and by device driver installations. Restore points may also be set by request by other software and installers, and by manual request.

System Restore is primarily designed to protect Windows itself. It restores "system" settings, but not most user and application settings. It generally reverts executables, but it doesn't know whether or not they've been installed, so if you do a System Restore and you've downloaded some executables, they'll be lost even if they were never installed, unless you rename their extensions. I'm not sure whether it fully reverts everything in Program Files (regardless of whether it's executable). Under some circumstances, it can do strange things, such as rename folders (this is due to the fact that it's not a full rollback solution). If you've just installed software which you want to get rid of, you should uninstall it before performing a system restore, to undo the things which system restore doesn't (limited by what the uninstaller actually uninstalls). Most people don't understand uninstalls. Much of most installs is a one-way process, and is not undone by uninstallation. An uninstall plus a system restore will undo most of it, but won't help with data and user registry items which the uninstaller didn't undo. I find that system restore frequently fails, and in typical Microsoft fashion, for unspecified reasons. Naturally, if I request a system restore, it's because I really need it, so it really ticks me off when it doesn't work, which seems like most of the time, even in Vista. Most people also don't understand that if they do a random system restore to some time in the past (versus an extremely recent restore point) to fix a Windows problem, that their software environment is probably damaged thereafter, due to the lack of synchronization between changed and unchanged elements (because system restore is only a partial restoration, unlike GoBack, which was a full restoration). Unlike the current version of Returnil, system restore can be set to cover multiple drives/partitions (as did GoBack). The fact that system restore covers primarily system restoration has its good points and bad points. It leaves most user data intact, unlike GoBack, which, although it indicated which files would be lost by a reversion, required the user to have some knowledge of where programs stored data and which files were important. GoBack's full reversion was fully synchronized, but if the user chose to restore some files which would have been otherwise lost by the reversion, it couldn't fix internal to external linkage issues (such as registry entries tied to external files or links within other files to external files). That's why rollback is always a very serious operation, which should not be performed lightly.

Reply   |   Comment by Fubar  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#142

@ doguru

Try installing the software on an external device.
This will allow you to keep this software while you re-install windows.

Reply   |   Comment by The White Dragon  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#141

Hi again Mike!
I find this software to be mindblowingly simple. The last time this software was offered, there were so many people spreading FUD. I liked the way you just kept trying to help people understand.

I saw what you were saying last time and downloaded it, and have been using it ever since.

I think it is really hard to truly describe this software to most mainstream computer users.

To say it is a virtual software does not help most users because most people only understand the virtual system to be running outside the "Real" base operating system with the virtual system as a separate operating system.

While technically this is a virtual "type" system, the reality that most users need to understand is that this is much less like a virtual operating system and it is more like a "rollback". But describing it as a rollback really does not work as an explanation ether because it is not rolling anything back. Rollback type systems require time to record the current status before moving on. The RETURNIL system is almost instantaneous, and like you said there is nothing to roll back because there was nothing saved.

I find myself describing RETURNIL to people as a piece of clear plastic that is sitting on top of the computer's memory. When you turn returnil on, this clear plastic is laid over the computer's current memory. This plastic is now protecting everything under the plastic. Remove the plastic covering and the memory looks exactly like it did when you put the plastic on in the first place.

The reason for describing the plastic as clear is that it is ABSOLUTELY transparent to the computer (you don't even know you are wearing it ;-) so that everything UNDER the plastic is visible and can be accessed and used. As things are being used under the plastic, the changes are ONLY occurring on top of the plastic. NOTHING is allowed to be changed UNDER the plastic. Everything you do with the computer after starting up RETURNIL occurs ON TOP of the plastic.

When you restart the computer, the plastic is no longer there and EVERYTHING that occurred on top of the plastic is GONE, leaving the computer's memory looking EXACTLY like it was when you put the plastic protection on in the first place.

I do not use RETURNIL when I am working on programs installed on my computer. I turn it on when I am going out in the Internet world or when I am loading NEW software that I am not sure of.

There have been a few times when my Antivirus software tells me that I am getting into trouble but then I turn off my computer BY HITTING THE POWER SWITCH.

You do NOT NEED to do the Start/Turn Off The Computer/Shutdown routine because you are not saving any "CURRENT" computer information. You just hit the power button - which saves a lot of time.

Thanks again for this wonder piece of software!

Reply   |   Comment by StarPilot  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#140

Is it possible to run this program, then disable it and use it to restore things as they were maybe a week or a month or so ago? I don't like having to reboot to turn it off all of the time.

Reply   |   Comment by Dianne  –  11 years ago  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
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