So, I "bricked" my Windows 11 install yesterday...


Lebon14

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Yo.

Long time no see. I may not be active as much as I was around the Windows 7 days but hey, I'm still around and if I need some help, I'll probably ask around here.

Anyway, to the story.

I have become a keyboard layout snob of some sort - in that I use a custom keyboard layout. Now, it's not DAVORAK or anything like that. It's a modified French (Canada) layout (not the legacy or "Canadian Multilingual" - just straight "French (Canada)". You can see the layout here).

Now, please note that I'm using this layout with a US layout keyboard that lacks the "« » °" key to the right of the left SHIFT button. I used to use Microsoft Keyboard Layout creator but stopped using it because of how incredibly buggy that thing was. So, I eventually moved to KBDEdit Pro (I paid for the software, of course) and imported the layout. That was well before yesterday mind you.

Now 2 days ago, I discovered that I could add some additional key combinations to the Num Keypad while using ALTGr (ie. Right Alt). So, that's what I did and made some tweaks to some other keys as well to encompass some characters that I use more often because of my hobby: CD collection (especially from Japan). So, I saved that and KBDEdit threw an error about something English (US) layout. Now, I remember wanting the "language bar" gone from my System Tray back in July when I had decided to start a fresh Windows 11 Pro install because things were getting too slow and some weird behavior. So, the only I found to remove it was to go in the Registry. So, I removed the language there and forced the Language Bar out. Everything went well until yesterday.

I noticed some strange behavior where Windows would somehow drop clicks and whatnot... but that was before I changed my layout again. I found it weird but shrugged it off. So, I did the change to the keyboard layout and memed a bit on Discord with the new registered keys. But then, I went to use the calculator and pressed the Numpad Enter to I realize I eff'ed up by putting a key to it (ALTGr+NumPad Enter). So, I went back into KBDEdit and removed it. I tried the calculator again but... nothing. The calculator wouldn't take any Enter input. What's more, in any Windows App, including settings and whatnot, Windows wouldn't recognize any keyboard input whatsoever. But in all other apps, it worked fine.

Oh, and please note, that for the keyboard layouts to take effect, I need to Sign out and back in or reboot. Forgot to say that. So, I had already rebooted several times by that point.

So, now, at that point, the search in Start Menu was also borked as clicking the text field would spawn a semi-transparent window in the top left corner and disappear the minute you clicked outside of it. I tried searching the net and there was... some issues regarding that but the most common answer fixed Search in the Start Menu but didn't actually solve my issue.

So, then, I got an idea. System Restore points!

Conveniently, there was one done a little bit less than a week ago and I definitely knew everything was working then. So, I did a system restore.

When the process was finished, my keyboard worked again but Windows had an error: System Restore had (somehow) failed and no changes were done (some changes were definitely done). However, another graver issue arose. I had zero internet. I couldn't access my NAS through my dedicated 10Gbe ethernet card that's directly connected to it (point-to-point, no router or anything in-between). So, that said, no network adapters worked AT. ALL. I could definitely get on the internet with my phone through wi-fi. My seedbox, which is wired, also worked fine and could also use my NAS just fine. My NAS also worked on my phone. I tried uninstalling the adapters, re-installing drivers (with the help of my seedbox which is a backup PC in itself), resetting network config... nothing worked. So, I figured that my Windows install had been borked by the System Restore. Without no way of really making an emergency backup to my NAS, I took out a Segate 3TB external HDD I had received from Backblaze back in 2015 when I thought I had lost my data after an appartment fire (my PC had, somehow, survived). So, I plugged it in and ran fine.

Another note: Windows had also become somewhat unstable and things could freeze for a period of time for some reason as well or take a bit of time to open apps that shouldn't take any time to open.

I cleared a bit of space and made a clone of my nvme SSD to it using Macrium Reflect Free. Because, I'm paranoid about my settings, I saved what I could from my Firefox install and my AppData folder. The AppData folder took 2 hours on its own because, probably, of the system slowness. Yes, the hard drive was connected to USB 3.

Took out my custom Windows 11 install thumdrive (custom ISO made with NTLite which prompt me for the computer name, creates a local account, remove some bloatware, apply dark mode off the bat, etc.) and then wiped my nvme SSD clean and started over. When I came to a clean desktop, sure enough, Internet was working and I succesfully mapped my network drives.

I spent the rest of the night re-installing my software and re-instating my settings. I made this order and went to bed at around 8:30am and woken up 4 hours later because my mom wanted to go to the bank (she doesn't drive).

Thank you for reading my story. Feel free to speculate about the issues and maybe I could pick up a tip or two if it happens again.

As for the keyboard layout I am using, it also allows me to write even more accentuated letters than the original French (Canada) layout and write some unicode character I use often. Keyboard layout in a spoiler below.

Cheers.

Code:
Numbers keyboard row:
No key held : # 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - =
SHIFT held  : | ! " / $ % ? & * ( ) _ + "
ALTCar held : \ ± @ £ ¢ ← ↓ → ² ³ ¼ ½ ¾

QWERTY row:
No key held : q w e r t y u i o p ^ ¸ <
SHIFT held  : Q W E R T Y U I O P “ ¨ >
ALTCar held : ⧸ ⧹ ✱ ꞉ ? 「 」 ※ ℗ † [ ] }

ASDFG row:
No key held : a s d f g h j k l ; `
SHIFT held  : A S D F G H J K L : ”
ALTCar held : × ÷ ≠ ★ ☆ < > © ~ ~ { 

ZXCVB row:
No key held : z x c v b n m , . é
SHIFT held  : Z X C V B N M ' ~ É
ALTCar held : « » ° € ¥ Я µ ↑ • ´

NUM Keypad:
No key held and SHIFT held are the same as you'd expect (including Home, Pg Up, arrows, etc.)
ALTCar held:
/ * - keys : α β ¯
789+ keys  : Δ Θ Σ ⁀
456 keys   : Φ Ψ Ω
123 keys   :【 】 〒
0. keys    : ⑨ 〜

All accents are dead keys and which are grave accent ( ` ), circumflex accent ( ^ ), cedilla ( ¸ ),
acute accent ( ´ ), ene ( ~ (ie. ñ)) and macron ( ¯ (ex. ō)).

A lot of these are there as subtitute characters for filenames.
ALTCar zxc keys («»°) is to replace the key that's missing on a US keyboard compared to the Canadian French layout.
℗© bcause I enter lots of info on Discogs and I need these handy.
† because of this doujin circle.
Я because of this artist in particular.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Build
    CPU
    Ryzen 9 5900X
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master
    Memory
    64GB G.Skill Neo 3600MHz CL16 (4x16GB)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti
    Sound Card
    On-Board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell Alienware AW3418DW
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440 120Hz
    Hard Drives
    Sabrent Rocket Plus 4.0 2TB
    PSU
    Seasonic Focus PX-850 850W
    Case
    Corsair 680X
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro Series H100i RGB Platinum
    Keyboard
    Logitech K350
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Internet Speed
    1gbit symmetric (Fiber)
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    none
    Other Info
    Synology NAS: 4×10TB (1 drive for parity). 1 10TB cold spare.
I'm not sure I'm able to keep the flow of events in their proper perspective. It sounds to me like it was a matter of you blew windows mind with one or more or your keyboard changes resulting in no input to the machine. Then you relied on a successful system restore to revert the changes, but SR failed. System restore is not 100% reliable. So unreliable in fact, I have it turned off on my machine.

Had it been me, I would have imaged the system BEFORE the keyboard changes. When everything went to hell in a hand basket, I would have restored my image and been right back where I started. No harm, no foul.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3447
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 7080
    CPU
    i9-10900 10 core 20 threads
    Motherboard
    DELL 0J37VM
    Memory
    32 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    none-Intel UHD Graphics 630
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1tb Solidigm m.2 +256gb ssd+512 gb usb m.2 sata
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell Premium
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    so slow I'm too embarrassed to tell
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2 19045.3930
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 9020
    CPU
    i7-4770
    Memory
    24 gb
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    256 gb Toshiba BG4 M.2 NVE SSB and 1 tb hdd
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell factory
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Internet Speed
    still not telling
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
Then you relied on a successful system restore to revert the changes, but SR failed. System restore is not 100% reliable. So unreliable in fact, I have it turned off on my machine.
That was the first time ever that I tried this fonction.

Events in a nutshell:
1. Decided to re-install Windows 11 in July. Ported my MS Layout Creator fine.
2. Removed language with Regedit so language bar disappeared
3. Tried to make changes with MS Layout creator after that re-install. Too buggy, moved to KBDEdit Pro. No issues at that time.
4. 2 days ago (Dec. 19), tried to make a change with KBDEdit, gave me an error but somehow worked after reboot.
5. Notice that calculator wasn't working right, then also discover issue with MS Windows Apps
6. Tried searching for fix on internet to no avail.
7. Remembered System Restore, found a Restore Point less than a week old where things still worked and did the restore.
8. After restore, keyboard worked but no more network interface worked.
9. Tried a few things but ultimately emergency backup and re-installed Windows
10. Took the whole night re-installing apps and re-applying their settings.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Build
    CPU
    Ryzen 9 5900X
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master
    Memory
    64GB G.Skill Neo 3600MHz CL16 (4x16GB)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti
    Sound Card
    On-Board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell Alienware AW3418DW
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440 120Hz
    Hard Drives
    Sabrent Rocket Plus 4.0 2TB
    PSU
    Seasonic Focus PX-850 850W
    Case
    Corsair 680X
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro Series H100i RGB Platinum
    Keyboard
    Logitech K350
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Internet Speed
    1gbit symmetric (Fiber)
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    none
    Other Info
    Synology NAS: 4×10TB (1 drive for parity). 1 10TB cold spare.
I'm not sure I'm able to keep the flow of events in their proper perspective. It sounds to me like it was a matter of you blew windows mind with one or more or your keyboard changes resulting in no input to the machine. Then you relied on a successful system restore to revert the changes, but SR failed. System restore is not 100% reliable. So unreliable in fact, I have it turned off on my machine.

Had it been me, I would have imaged the system BEFORE the keyboard changes. When everything went to hell in a hand basket, I would have restored my image and been right back where I started. No harm, no foul.
100% agree. I have turned off system restores and use image backups only.

One thing to bear in mind about using images though compared with restores

A system restore does not affect user data.

However, a restoring an image backup would lose data changes since the image backup if data is included in the image backup.

The best way to avoid this is to keep data in a separate partition and back it up separately (preferably to an external drive) using any of a number of tools e.g. file history backup, freefilesync, or simply copying with file explorer.

It is also a good plan to make a differential or incremental backup before restoring an image so if you did accidentally ose recent data, you can mount diff. or inc. and recover lost data.

Overall, image restores are far more reliable but you need to be carefull about user data.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro + others in VHDs
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    ASUS Vivobook 14
    CPU
    I7
    Motherboard
    Yep, Laptop has one.
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Integrated Intel Iris XE
    Sound Card
    Realtek built in
    Monitor(s) Displays
    N/A
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1 TB Optane NVME SSD, 1 TB NVME SSD
    PSU
    Yep, got one
    Case
    Yep, got one
    Cooling
    Stella Artois
    Keyboard
    Built in
    Mouse
    Bluetooth , wired
    Internet Speed
    72 Mb/s :-(
    Browser
    Edge mostly
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    TPM 2.0
a keyboard layout snob

I'm too simple minded to change my keyboard to do anything other than what my eyes can see in front of me. Heck, my geriatric mind has trouble remembering a few standard shortcut keys. Maybe Windows 11 just has it in "keyboard snobs". :wink:
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3447
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 7080
    CPU
    i9-10900 10 core 20 threads
    Motherboard
    DELL 0J37VM
    Memory
    32 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    none-Intel UHD Graphics 630
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1tb Solidigm m.2 +256gb ssd+512 gb usb m.2 sata
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell Premium
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    so slow I'm too embarrassed to tell
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2 19045.3930
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 9020
    CPU
    i7-4770
    Memory
    24 gb
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    256 gb Toshiba BG4 M.2 NVE SSB and 1 tb hdd
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell factory
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Internet Speed
    still not telling
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
100% agree. I have turned off system restores and use image backups only.
I understand your strategy - especially, if you are alpha/beta testing and things might break easily, getting these images ready might be a good thing to have around.

For me, I don't remember the last time I legit broke my Windows installation or Windows broke itself with an update or something. I once had a Windows 7 install on the machine I had before this one (a Core i7 950-based machine) that had the same Windows install for... Well, I wouldn't be surprised if it was half a decade and more.

I also have a Backblaze backup. So, things had really turned sour, I had a FULL backup of absolutely everything, including files the client doesn't usually backup, in case of absolute emergency.

Having said that, having never really had major Windows breakage since probably my Vista days (where I caught a virus I believe) and a healthy obsession with making copies of everything and would hoard things way too much, I think that you would excuse me to not have incremental images of my local storage. I think I re-imaged a drive only once ever and it was when I tried Win10 on the machine I had before this one (the same Core i7 950) and had issues where not all files would be copied and said "nope" not even 24h in and reverted to the image I made.

So, yeah. All other Windows (re-)install were voluntary and planned. It's something I hate doing for myself because of the sheer amount of work I have to do after the (re-)install.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Build
    CPU
    Ryzen 9 5900X
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master
    Memory
    64GB G.Skill Neo 3600MHz CL16 (4x16GB)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti
    Sound Card
    On-Board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell Alienware AW3418DW
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440 120Hz
    Hard Drives
    Sabrent Rocket Plus 4.0 2TB
    PSU
    Seasonic Focus PX-850 850W
    Case
    Corsair 680X
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro Series H100i RGB Platinum
    Keyboard
    Logitech K350
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Internet Speed
    1gbit symmetric (Fiber)
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    none
    Other Info
    Synology NAS: 4×10TB (1 drive for parity). 1 10TB cold spare.
Hello Sebastien, long time no see :wink: It's what now Lebon27? :wink:

A Guy
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 10 Home x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    INTEL Core i5-11400
    Motherboard
    ASUS PRIME H570-PLUS
    Memory
    KINGSTON HyperX Fury Black DDR4 16GB (2 x 8GB) 3200MHz, CL16
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 750 Superclocked 1GB 128-Bit GDDR5
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG 32MA68HY 32" IPS
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    SAMSUNG 250GB 970 EVO Plus NVMe, M.2 SSD, Crucial 250GB MX500, SEAGATE 500GB Barracuda® 7200.12, SATA 3 Gb/s, 7200 RPM, 16MB cache
    PSU
    CORSAIR RM550x 80 PLUS Gold 550W
    Case
    ANTEC P10 FLUX
    Cooling
    be quiet! Pure Rock 2, 5 x 120 mm Case Fans
    Internet Speed
    480 + Mbps Up/ 12+ Mbps Down
    Browser
    Vivaldi Snapshot
    Antivirus
    Avast
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Home x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-750
    Motherboard
    ASUS P7P55D
    Memory
    Kingston HyperX Fury Black 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3-1600MHz CL8
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI GeForce GT 240 N240GT-MD1G/D5 1 GB DDR5
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG 32MA68HY 32" IPS
    Screen Resolution
    1980x1040
    Hard Drives
    Samsung Electronics 840 EVO 120GB, SEAGATE 500GB Barracuda® 7200.12, SATA 3 Gb/s, 7200 RPM, 16MB cache
    PSU
    Antec TruePower New TP-550 550W
    Case
    Antec 300
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper 212+, 4 Noctua NF-P12 120mm, 1 Noctua NF-P14 FLX
    Internet Speed
    480+ Mbps Down/12+Mbps Up
    Browser
    Vivaldi Snapshot
    Antivirus
    Avast

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Build
    CPU
    Ryzen 9 5900X
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master
    Memory
    64GB G.Skill Neo 3600MHz CL16 (4x16GB)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti
    Sound Card
    On-Board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell Alienware AW3418DW
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440 120Hz
    Hard Drives
    Sabrent Rocket Plus 4.0 2TB
    PSU
    Seasonic Focus PX-850 850W
    Case
    Corsair 680X
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro Series H100i RGB Platinum
    Keyboard
    Logitech K350
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Internet Speed
    1gbit symmetric (Fiber)
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    none
    Other Info
    Synology NAS: 4×10TB (1 drive for parity). 1 10TB cold spare.
Oh snap...you got old :p

A Guy
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 10 Home x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    INTEL Core i5-11400
    Motherboard
    ASUS PRIME H570-PLUS
    Memory
    KINGSTON HyperX Fury Black DDR4 16GB (2 x 8GB) 3200MHz, CL16
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 750 Superclocked 1GB 128-Bit GDDR5
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG 32MA68HY 32" IPS
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    SAMSUNG 250GB 970 EVO Plus NVMe, M.2 SSD, Crucial 250GB MX500, SEAGATE 500GB Barracuda® 7200.12, SATA 3 Gb/s, 7200 RPM, 16MB cache
    PSU
    CORSAIR RM550x 80 PLUS Gold 550W
    Case
    ANTEC P10 FLUX
    Cooling
    be quiet! Pure Rock 2, 5 x 120 mm Case Fans
    Internet Speed
    480 + Mbps Up/ 12+ Mbps Down
    Browser
    Vivaldi Snapshot
    Antivirus
    Avast
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Home x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-750
    Motherboard
    ASUS P7P55D
    Memory
    Kingston HyperX Fury Black 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3-1600MHz CL8
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI GeForce GT 240 N240GT-MD1G/D5 1 GB DDR5
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG 32MA68HY 32" IPS
    Screen Resolution
    1980x1040
    Hard Drives
    Samsung Electronics 840 EVO 120GB, SEAGATE 500GB Barracuda® 7200.12, SATA 3 Gb/s, 7200 RPM, 16MB cache
    PSU
    Antec TruePower New TP-550 550W
    Case
    Antec 300
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper 212+, 4 Noctua NF-P12 120mm, 1 Noctua NF-P14 FLX
    Internet Speed
    480+ Mbps Down/12+Mbps Up
    Browser
    Vivaldi Snapshot
    Antivirus
    Avast
At LeBron14, welcome to eleven forums. I remember you from the seven forum days :-)

Anyway...
Conveniently, there was one done a little bit less than a week ago and I definitely knew everything was working then. So, I did a system restore.

When the process was finished, my keyboard worked again but Windows had an error: System Restore had (somehow) failed and no changes were done (some changes were definitely done).
This makes no sense as System Restore either works or it doesn't. There is no "some changes were made" mode. And why the system told you it failed. The message would actually say System Restored failed and no changes were made, because as noted it's either all or nothing.

System Restore Failed.jpg

Also, when a "Restore Point is created is creates a snapshot of the "registry and system files in the state they're in at that moment. It also does not backup, and therefore restore personal "user" data. It will only restore the registry and system files that have been changed. That's it.

Typically, where System Restore fails. - if you make wholesale changes to the OS to include removing and installing drivers, and enabling/disabling services and settings, and then try a System Restore, yeah, you're likely to run into issues.

The way I use System Restore is to create a Restore Point "before" I make wholesale changes to the system and if I run into an issue, use the Restore Point immediately. In that vein, I've never had an issue. It's when I do a hundred things to system in trying to fix something, THEN decide to do a System Restore that I run into issues.

People here making claims that System Restore is "so unreliable" have either never used the system, are going on "misrepresented / misunderstood net stories" or view it as something it's not. There are many posts on this site where users mistakenly think System Restore is a backup system. It is not as it does not backup personal data and folders.

As for your issues, I've no suggestions as you've done a number of things to the PC to solve whatever the issue was. I'm just pointing out fallacy over System Restore. Not that it can't fail, I've had it happen to me, but it's not a halfway thing.

Good luck.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 (Build 22631.3296)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom built
    CPU
    Intel i9-9900K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte Aorus Z390 Xtreme
    Memory
    32G (4x8) DDR4 Corsair RGB Dominator Platinum (3600Mhz)
    Graphics Card(s)
    Radeon VII
    Sound Card
    Onboard (ESS Sabre HiFi using Realtek drivers)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    NEC PA242w (24 inch)
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1200
    Hard Drives
    5 Samsung SSD drives: 2X 970 NVME (512 & 1TB), 3X EVO SATA (2X 2TB, 1X 1TB)
    PSU
    EVGA Super Nova I000 G2 (1000 watt)
    Case
    Cooler Master H500M
    Cooling
    Corsair H115i RGB Platinum
    Keyboard
    Logitech Craft
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    500mb Download. 11mb Upload
    Browser
    Microsoft Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Windows Security
    Other Info
    System used for gaming, photography, music, school.
  • Operating System
    Win 10 Pro 22H2 (build 19045.2130)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom Built
    CPU
    Intel i7-7700K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte GA-Z270X-GAMING 8
    Memory
    32G (4x8) DDR4 Corsair Dominator Platinum (3333Mhz)
    Graphics card(s)
    AMD Radeon R9 Fury
    Sound Card
    Onboard (Creative Sound Blaster certified ZxRi)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U2415 (24 inch)
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1200
    Hard Drives
    3 Samsung SSD drives: 1x 512gig 950 NVMe drive (OS drive), 1 x 512gig 850 Pro, 1x 256gig 840 Pro.
    PSU
    EVGA Super Nova 1000 P2 (1000 watt)
    Case
    Phantek Enthoo Luxe
    Cooling
    Corsair H100i
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master
    Keyboard
    Logitech MK 710
    Internet Speed
    100MB
    Browser
    Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Windows Security
    Other Info
    This is my backup system.
System Restore does what it says it does . . . When it works. If you made system changes your system will revert back to its old settings. Personal files and data won't change (but, as I've stated many times, stuff happens). You could try saving all your personal files and data on a separate drive and then restore back, waaaay back, and see if that makes a difference. You might also try messing with your keyboard settings again and checking msconfig using the standard trouble shooting routine if you can get into your PC via safe mode. Safe mode is a real PITA sometimes in Win 11. I've had System Restore just suddenly turn off on me without warning for no apparent reason. So yeah, not really all that reliable.

Have you tried installing a different OS, say Windows 10, to make a dual boot and getting your keyboard settings to work on that OS first? I mean it's a long shot, but possibly worth a try. I realize it makes no sense but neither does TPM and security keys. You might want to look at those also. Other than that I got nuthin'. Please let us know how it goes.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    WIN 11, WIN 10, WIN 8.1, WIN 7 U, WIN 7 PRO, WIN 7 HOME (32 Bit), LINUX MINT
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    DIY, ASUS, and DELL
    CPU
    Intel i7 6900K (octocore) / AMD 3800X (8 core)
    Motherboard
    ASUS X99E-WS USB 3.1
    Memory
    128 GB CORSAIR DOMINATOR PLATINUM (B DIE)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA 1070
    Sound Card
    Crystal Sound (onboard)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    single Samsung 30" 4K and 8" aux monitor
    Screen Resolution
    4K and something equally attrocious
    Hard Drives
    A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W

    Ports X, Y, and Z are reserved for USB access and removable drives.

    Drive types consist of the following: Various mechanical hard drives bearing the brand names, Seagate, Toshiba, and Western Digital. Various NVMe drives bearing the brand names Kingston, Intel, Silicon Power, Crucial, Western Digital, and Team Group. Various SATA SSDs bearing various different brand names.

    RAID arrays included:

    LSI RAID 10 (WD Velociraptors) 1115.72 GB
    LSI RAID 10 (WD SSDS) 463.80 GB

    INTEL RAID 0 (KINGSTON HYPER X) System 447.14 GB
    INTEL RAID 1 TOSHIBA ENTERPRIZE class Data 2794.52 GB
    INTEL RAID 1 SEAGATE HYBRID 931.51 GB
    PSU
    SEVERAL. I prefer my Corsair Platinum HX1000i but I also like EVGA power supplies
    Case
    ThermalTake Level 10 GT (among others)
    Cooling
    Noctua is my favorite and I use it in my main. I also own various other coolers. Not a fan of liquid cooling.
    Keyboard
    all kinds.
    Mouse
    all kinds
    Internet Speed
    360 mbps - 1 gbps (depending)
    Browser
    FIREFOX
    Antivirus
    KASPERSKY (no apologies)
    Other Info
    I own too many laptops: A Dell touch screen with Windows 11 and 6 others (not counting the other four laptops I bought for this household.) Being a PC builder I own many desktop PCs as well. I am a father of five providing PCs, laptops, and tablets for all my family, most of which I have modified, rebuilt, or simply built from scratch. I do not own a cell phone, never have, never will.

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    11 Pro 23H2 OS build 22631.3374
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Acer Swift SF114-34
    CPU
    Pentium Silver N6000 1.10GHz
    Memory
    4GB
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    SSD
    Cooling
    fanless
    Internet Speed
    13Mbps
    Browser
    Brave, Edge or Firefox
    Antivirus
    Webroot Secure Anywhere
    Other Info
    System 3

    ASUS T100TA Transformer
    Processor Intel Atom Z3740 @ 1.33GHz
    Installed RAM 2.00 GB (1.89 GB usable)
    System type 32-bit operating system, x64-based processor

    Edition Windows 10 Home
    Version 22H2 build 19045.3570
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.2506
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Mini 210-1090NR PC (bought in late 2009!)
    CPU
    Atom N450 1.66GHz
    Memory
    2GB
Alternatively, there is this tutorial:
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    11 Pro 23H2 22631.3447
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkCentre M920S SFF
    CPU
    i7-9700 @ 3.00GHz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo 3132
    Memory
    32GBDDR4 @ 2666MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel HD 630 Graphics onboard
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG E2442
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1 x Samsung 970 EVO PLUS 500GB NVMe SSD, 1 x WD_BLACK SN770
    250GB NVMe SSD (OS and programs), 1 x WD_BLACK SN770
    500GB NVMe SSD (Data)
    Case
    Lenovo SFF
    Keyboard
    Cherry Stream TKL JK-8600US-2 Wired
    Mouse
    LogiTech M510 wireless
    Internet Speed
    Fast (for fixed wireless!)
    Browser
    Chrome, sometimes Firefox
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes Premium & Defender (working together beautifully!)
  • Operating System
    11 Pro 23H2 22631.3447
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkCentre M920S SFF
    CPU
    i5-8400 @ 2.80GHz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo 3132
    Memory
    32GB DDR4 @ 2600MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel HD 630 Graphics onboard
    Sound Card
    Realtek High Definition Audio onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG FULL HD (1920x1080@59Hz)
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    1 x Samsung 970 EVO PLUS NVMe; 1 x Samsung 980 NVMe SSD
    Case
    Lenovo Think Centre SFF
    Mouse
    LogiTech M510 wireless
    Keyboard
    Cherry Stream TKL JK-8600US-2 Wired
    Internet Speed
    Fast (for fixed wireless!)
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes Premium and MS Defender, beautiful together
I spent the rest of the night re-installing my software and re-instating my settings.



Here's a magic spell we all use when Windows gets strange.

Backup software



I noticed you already use various backup solutions. The trick how ever is "when" you use them.
A good practice is to make a backup "before" you start experimenting with things.
Then, if something breaks, you can just restore from a backup.

Obviously you're computer savvy...

I'm definitely OCD, so I've come up with what I think is a great... method.

1. Keep the used space on your Windows drive small. Backups and restores will then be very fast.
2. Install large programs and games on a storage drive.

That's pretty much all there is to it.
My Windows partition is about 36GB. It takes me under two minutes to do a backup or a restore.
When backups and restores are that fast, "experimenting" becomes far less dangerous, and easy to repair if needed.



Backup Software.png
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3447 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?
This makes no sense as System Restore either works or it doesn't
Totally agree. I create Restore points on a 3 day schedule.
IF you are to use a restore point, just make sure to deactivate your Security programs.
Even MBAM has to be exited (not uninstalled) if you want to have a chance at a successful
restore of the OS. Another consideration is to Not use a restore that is a week old. Too
much will have changed.
I use the clone version of Macrium. For me, IF something goes wrong that can't be fixed
or a restore can't take care of, I simply swap the drive for the clone. Takes about 15 minutes.
You have also mentioned that you are using a custom OS made with NTLite, this might also
affect the restore program:
This is from an old site but, might still be relevant :
update: After right-click install of the system restore service inf file (component as removed by jdeboeck), I was able to install the pdf printer drivers. I guess this would also apply to fax printer drivers.

- Some people find they don't need system restore, so obviously not the whole component is needed, just some part
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    windows 11 22631.3296
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    MSI Raider GE76
    CPU
    Core i9 12th gen 12900HK 2.9 MHz
    Motherboard
    MSI
    Memory
    32 Gigs DDR5-4800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVidia RTX 3070 Ti / 8 Gigs DDR6
    Sound Card
    DYNAUDIO - Klipsch 2.1 THX - Sound Effects by Nahimic 3
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17.3" 1920 x 1080 360 Hz 3 ms, IPS / Connected to MSI 32 inch curved @ 165 Hz
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080 / Both
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 990 Pro 2TB (OS) - Solidigm P41 2TB (Storage)
    PSU
    280 watts
    Case
    MSI GE series
    Cooling
    internal
    Keyboard
    Steelseries
    Mouse
    G903 Lightspeed
    Internet Speed
    1000 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox / Opera GX- Do not like Edge
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes'
    Other Info
    just ask.
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 22H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    MSI GT73 7RE VR Titan
    CPU
    Intel Core i7 7820HK 2.9 Ghz
    Motherboard
    MSI
    Memory
    16 Gigs DDR4 2400 Mhz
    Graphics card(s)
    nVidia 1070 8GB RAM
    Sound Card
    DYNAUDIO / Nahimic 2
    Monitor(s) Displays
    IPS / 120HZ
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080P
    Hard Drives
    Samsung NVME EVO 970 1TB / Samsung SSD (SATA) 1TB
    PSU
    240 watts
    Case
    MSI
    Cooling
    Internal
    Mouse
    Logitech G903 Lightspeed
    Keyboard
    Steelseries
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s
    Browser
    Firefox / Vivaldi
    Antivirus
    MalwareBytes'
    Other Info
    none.
Once a week I move all my personal files to a drive I call my Archives. That way if my system crashes and can't be recovered I lose next to nothing. With NVMe this doesn't take long at all. I also have File History enabled but it is no big secret that File History isn't always reliable. In addition to this I make a system restore point at least once a week. To be honest, I've found it at least as reliable as File History if not more so. Kaspersky makes a handy software program for backups and it has worked for me when Windows Backup failed me. I still make Windows backups but these are only reliable about 50% of the time. My best backup is a clone of my entire OS with my personal files. I can always add files from my Archives, or File History, or Kaspersky, or directly strip them off the non-recoverable drive when I access it from Disk Manager. That way I lose nothing current. I do not trust standard backup software. My best insurance is a clone of my drive, File History, and archiving my personal files once a week. This does not mean that I don't use standard backup software but I refuse to rely on it exclusively. Experience has taught me well.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    WIN 11, WIN 10, WIN 8.1, WIN 7 U, WIN 7 PRO, WIN 7 HOME (32 Bit), LINUX MINT
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    DIY, ASUS, and DELL
    CPU
    Intel i7 6900K (octocore) / AMD 3800X (8 core)
    Motherboard
    ASUS X99E-WS USB 3.1
    Memory
    128 GB CORSAIR DOMINATOR PLATINUM (B DIE)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA 1070
    Sound Card
    Crystal Sound (onboard)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    single Samsung 30" 4K and 8" aux monitor
    Screen Resolution
    4K and something equally attrocious
    Hard Drives
    A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W

    Ports X, Y, and Z are reserved for USB access and removable drives.

    Drive types consist of the following: Various mechanical hard drives bearing the brand names, Seagate, Toshiba, and Western Digital. Various NVMe drives bearing the brand names Kingston, Intel, Silicon Power, Crucial, Western Digital, and Team Group. Various SATA SSDs bearing various different brand names.

    RAID arrays included:

    LSI RAID 10 (WD Velociraptors) 1115.72 GB
    LSI RAID 10 (WD SSDS) 463.80 GB

    INTEL RAID 0 (KINGSTON HYPER X) System 447.14 GB
    INTEL RAID 1 TOSHIBA ENTERPRIZE class Data 2794.52 GB
    INTEL RAID 1 SEAGATE HYBRID 931.51 GB
    PSU
    SEVERAL. I prefer my Corsair Platinum HX1000i but I also like EVGA power supplies
    Case
    ThermalTake Level 10 GT (among others)
    Cooling
    Noctua is my favorite and I use it in my main. I also own various other coolers. Not a fan of liquid cooling.
    Keyboard
    all kinds.
    Mouse
    all kinds
    Internet Speed
    360 mbps - 1 gbps (depending)
    Browser
    FIREFOX
    Antivirus
    KASPERSKY (no apologies)
    Other Info
    I own too many laptops: A Dell touch screen with Windows 11 and 6 others (not counting the other four laptops I bought for this household.) Being a PC builder I own many desktop PCs as well. I am a father of five providing PCs, laptops, and tablets for all my family, most of which I have modified, rebuilt, or simply built from scratch. I do not own a cell phone, never have, never will.
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