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I've got another strange problem with Windows 7:

When I open the "Backup and restore" in the control panel, I just get an empty window without any content.

I can't use the backup and restore feature. Maybe somebody has an idea what could be wrong?

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Possible Solution:

  1. Press WindowsR
  2. Type services.msc
  3. Right click the Windows Backup service and click Start

This should solve the problem.

Edit: If Start is greyed out, the service has been disabled. Choose Properties from the right-click menu, and select Manual or Automatic from the drop down box. This will then allow Start to be chosen.

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Did the trick for me, thank you. Backup software(Genie Timeline) did disable the service. – Lerkes Nov 18 '14 at 9:47

If starting the Windows Backup service does not work or it is missing from your list of services, perhaps you need to restore some registry entries from SDRSVC.DLL: -

  1. Log in as an administrator
  2. Open Command Prompt (cmd.exe) or click the Run... command in the Windows Start Menu (orb)
  3. Enter the command regsvr32 sdrsvc.dll
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I changed the drive letter of a drive that had some files being backed up and it broke Windows backup service (even though I copied all the files to a new a drive and assigned it the old drive letter). It wouldn't let me restart Windows Backup in services.msc but doing this worked for me although I did set Windows Backup service to start automatically. – Mordred Jan 19 '15 at 5:54
  1. Make sure you have administrator privileges.

    • Most typical users would have, but in a corporate environment this may it might have been disabled by your IT policy. If you do not have administrator privileges then ask your IT department.
  2. Check if Windows Backup is able to start manually and start it.

    • Run "services.msc" as administrator, either in the "Administrator: Command Prompt" prompt or by pressing CTRL-R and typing "services.msc" in the text field. This should open the "Services" window.

      enter image description here

    • Look for the "Windows Backup" entry. Right click on it and and try to select "Start" in the pop-up. You can also select "Properties" and then click the button "Start" if it is available.

    • If this is successful and the service starts proceed to Step 4 (skip Step 3).
    • If the option or button "Start" is grayed out and unavailable then read on.
  3. Enable "Windows Backup" in the registry if necessary.

    • Run "regsvr32 sdrsvc"as administrator, either in the "Administrator: Command Prompt", or by pressing CTRL-R and typing "regsvr32 sdrsvc" in the text field.

      enter image description here

    • The Start option in "Windows Backup" service has now become available, so start it by repeating Step 2 above.

  4. Set the "Windows Backup" service to "Automatic" start type.

    • In the "Services" window (opened in Step 2) right click the "Windows Backup" entry and then click on "Properties", select tab "General", and change "Startup type:" from "Manual" to "Automatic".
    • Click "OK" or "Apply" to set the change.
  5. Refresh the "Backup and Restore" window by reopening it.

    • Trivial but if you forget to refresh it, it will remain empty.
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Some program has hijacked Windows Backup and Restore.

Go to Control Panel

Administrative Tools


Can see what Windows components are running, what have stopped. Can adjust what runs, e.g. if Windows Backup and Restore has stopped and displays no information, can check to be sure it is not disabled

Scroll down to Windows Backup

Turn on to Automatic if disabled

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