A customer recently sent us a screenshot of System Properties in Control Panel showing that his System Protection tab was missing. Launching the tab by its executable, SystemProtectionProperties.exe, did not launch the tab, either.
In this case, the customer’s IT group had disabled System Restore using Group Policy. You can check whether this is the case by looking in the registry for HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindows NTSystemRestoreDisableSR. If that value exists and is non-zero, then System Restore is completely disabled and you won’t see the System Protection tab.