What is Automated System Recovery? How to use it on Windows XP/Windows Server 2003? If you are looking for the answers to the above questions, you come to the right place. Now, continue to read this post.

Automated System Recovery

What is Automated System Recovery? It is also called ASR. It is a feature of the Windows XP operating system that can be used to simplify the recovery of a computer system or boot volume. ASR consists of two parts: automatic backup and automatic recovery. The backup section can be accessed in the backup utility under system tools.


Tip: Automated System Recovery is only available in Windows XP. To back up and restore the latest operating system – Windows 11/10, there is another backup and restore tool for you – MiniTool ShadowMaker. It’s a professional backup program, which is very easy to use and reliable for system backup, partition backup, disk backup, and the corresponding restoration in Windows.

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ASR does not back up user files or any other data, only the data needed to restore the system configuration state. Additional backup systems may be installed to ensure that the user’s actual data files are also backed up. In the event of a failure, perform an ASR restore first, then restore user files.


Note: ASR is only available on Windows XP Professional and some editions based on it. It is not available in Windows XP Home Edition or Starter Edition.

Automatic System Recovery Causes

When your server hangs or crashes, Windows will automatically perform a system recovery. Most of the time, driver errors with corrupted system files are the cause of this, and you’ll see a blue screen of death before rebooting.

To stop automatic system recovery, you need to find the root cause of the problem. Most problems are hardware or driver related.

Virus scanners can also be an issue when it comes to system crashes. A false positive from a virus scanner may quarantine a system file, causing Windows to crash. Make sure your virus scanner definitions are updated or test the computer with the virus scanner disabled.

Another common cause is hardware problems. A damaged memory module can crash the system, but a damaged hard drive can also be the cause of the problem.

How to Use Automated System Recovery

How to use the automated system recovery? Follow the guide below:


Step 1: Go to Start > All Programs> Accessories > System Tools > Backup.

Step 2: On the Backup and Restore Wizard page, click the Advanced Mode link.

Step 3: Under the Welcome tab, click the Automated System Recovery Wizard option. Click Next to continue.

Automated System Recovery

Step 4: Click Browse… to choose a location to save your system backup file and change the backup media or file name.

choose the backup destination


Tip: To get information about the BKF file, please refer to this post - BKF File: What Is It? How to Open It on Windows 11/10/8/7.

Step 5: Then, click Finish to start the backup process.


To recover from a system failure using Automated System Recovery. Make sure you have the following items before you begin the recovery procedure:

  1. The previously created Automated System Recovery (ASR) floppy disk.
  2. Your previously created backup media.
  3. The original operating system installation CD.

Step 1: Insert the original operating system installation CD into your CD drive.

Step 2: Restart your computer. If prompted to press a key to start the computer from CD, press the appropriate key.

Step 3: Press F2 when prompted during the text-only mode section of Setup. You will be prompted to insert the ‘ASR floppy disk’ you have previously created.

Step 4: Follow the on-screen instructions to finish the rest steps.

Final Words

What is Automated System Recovery? How to use the Automated System Recovery tool? This post has introduced answers. Besides, there is another backup and restore tool – MiniTool ShadowMaker for you to create a system backup and restore it when you get a system failure.

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