Advanced Registry Cleaner PC Diagnosis and Repair

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RegistryMum Registry Cleaner Summary

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Backing Up with the Registry Editor

The Registry Editor has a mechanism to export a set of Registry keys and values to a text file. If you can't or won't use a more comprehensive backup system before you manually edit the Registry, at least use this editor to select and back up the key that contains all the subkeys and values you plan to modify. Remember, though, that Regedit cannot remove entries you added that were not in the Registry before the backup 1. To run Regedit, click Start, and type regedit in the Search box. 2. When Regedit appears under Programs in the search results, select it and press Enter. (Alternatively, type regedit in a Command Prompt window.) 5. Choose a location and filename to use to store the Registry keys. I usually use the desktop for temporary files like this, so that I'll see them and delete them later.

Using Regedit to Repair a System That Wont Start

Another handy Startup Repair feature in Windows 7 is the capability to run the Registry editor (Regedit) from the Command Prompt window. If you cannot start your system because of driver or service problems or other Registry-related issues, you can use Regedit to work on your system and repair problems. To start Regedit from the Choose a Recovery Tool screen in the System Recovery Options dialog box (refer to Figure 25.1), click Command Prompt. When the command prompt window opens, type regedit and press Enter. Before making any changes with Regedit, export the current Registry with File, Export so that you have a backup copy, in case of problems. By default, Export saves only the current branch. To export the entire Registry, select All in the lower-left corner of the Export Registry File dialog box. Provide a name for the exported Registry, such as the computer name and current date, and click Save. You can use USB flash memory drives and other types of storage to save the exported...

Browsing and Editing with Registry Editor

Because of the registry's size, looking for a particular key, value, or data item can be daunting. In Registry Editor, the Find command (on the Edit menu also available by pressing Ctrl + F) works in the forward direction only and does not wrap around when it gets to the end of the registry. If you're not sure where the item you need is located, select the highest level in the left pane before issuing the command. If you have an approximate idea where the item you want is located, you can save time by starting at a node closer to (but still above) the target After you have located an item of interest, you can put it on the Favorites list to simplify a return visit. Open the Favorites menu, click Add To Favorites, and supply a friendly name (or accept the default). If you're about to close Registry Editor and know you'll be returning to the same key the next time you open the editor, you can skip the Favorites step, because Registry Editor always remembers your last position and...

Using Regedit

Most people never need to edit the Registry by hand because most Registry keys are set by the software that uses them. However, you might need to edit the Registry by hand if you're directed by a technical support person who's helping you fix a problem, or when you're following a published procedure to make an adjustment for which there is no Control Panel setting. In the latter case, before going any further, I need to say this one last time, to make it absolutely clear Unless you're quite certain that you can't make a mistake, back up the Registry (or at least the section you want to change) before making any changes. The next few sections cover the basics of the Registry Editor.

Avoiding Registry Mishaps

The primary tool in Windows 7 for working directly with the registry is Registry Editor. You won't find it anywhere on the Start menu, however, and it doesn't show up in the Start menu search box when you type its name you must use the name of its executable file, Regedit. exe. To start Registry Editor, at a command prompt, type regedit. The two most important things to know about Registry Editor are that it copies your changes immediately into the registry and that it has no Undo command. Registry Editor doesn't wait for you to issue a File, Save command (it has no such command) before making changes in the registry files. And after you have altered some bit of registry data, the original data is gone forever unless you remember it and restore it yourself or unless you have some form of backup that you can restore. Registry Editor is therefore a tool to be used sparingly and soberly it should not be left open when not in use. Use the Export command in Registry Editor to back up the...

How to Manually Initiate a Stop Error and Create a Dump File

On the Start menu, right-click Regedit and click Run As Administrator. Respond to the User Account Control (UAC) prompt that appears. 2. In the Registry Editor, navigate to Services i8042prt Parameters. 4. Close the Registry Editor and then restart the computer

Searching in the Registry

The Regedit display indicates the first match to your string by pressing F3, you can repeat the search to look for other instances. Also remember that Windows 7 might store information in some places you are not familiar with, as discussed previously under New Registry Features.

Direct From The Source

Windows PowerShell can run several different kinds of commands including scripts, external programs, and user-defined functions. It also has compiled cmdlets (pronounced command-lets), which are loaded into the Windows PowerShell environment from .NET DLL files. Windows PowerShell loads a default set of these DLLs when it starts without them, it would have just the basic grammar of a scripting language without any vocabulary. These DLLs, which can be registered and loaded as snap-ins or included as part of a Windows PowerShell module, can also contain the providers that Windows PowerShell uses to create drives PowerShell has drives for the Windows Registry and for variables as well as for file systems. Developers can provide DLLs to add extra cmdlets and providers. For example, in Windows Server 2008 R2, the Active Directory team provides a module whose DLL implements a rich set of commands and a provider so Active Directory can be treated as a drive. System administrators can write...

How to Configure Custom Search providers Using Group policy

You can provide a search provider list by using Group Policy settings . However, by default, this policy setting is not available. To include it, you must create administrative template files that update the proper registry keys on client computers . For detailed instructions, read Microsoft Knowledge Base article 918238 at http kb 918238.

Understanding the Structure of the Registry

Before you begin browsing or editing the registry, it's good to know a bit about how this database is built. Figure 22-19 shows a portion of a system's registry, as seen through Registry Editor, the registry editor supplied with Windows 7 . As shown in the figure, the registry consists of the following five root keys HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT, HKEY_CURRENT_USER, HKEY_ LOCAL_MACHINE, HKEY_USERS, and HKEY_CURRENT_CONFIG. For simplicity's sake and typographical convenience, this book, like many others, abbreviates the root key names as HKCR, HKCU, HKLM, HKU, and HKCC, respectively. Root keys, sometimes called predefined keys, contain subkeys. Registry Editor displays this structure as an outline. In Figure 22-19, for example, HKCU has been opened to show the top-level subkeys AppEvents, Console, Control Panel, Environment, EUDC, Identities, Keyboard Layout, Network, Printers, Software, System, and Volatile Environment. A root key and its subkeys can be described as a path, like this HKCU...

Using Reg Files to Automate Registry Changes

The . reg files created by the Export command in Registry Editor are plain text, suitable for reading and editing in Notepad or any similar editor. Therefore, they provide an alternative method for editing your registry. You can export a section of the registry, change it offline, and then merge it back into the registry. Or you can add new keys, values, and data to the registry by creating a .reg file from scratch and merging it. A .reg file is particularly useful if you need to make the same changes to the registry of several different computers. You can make and test your changes on one machine, save the relevant part of the registry as a .reg file, and then transport the file to the other machines that require it. File Edit Format View Help Windows Registry Editor version 5.00 gf Registry Editor

UAC and Startup Programs

By default, UAC blocks startup applications located in the Startup folder or identified in the Run registry key that require elevated privileges for both standard and administrative users . It would simply be too annoying to have multiple UAC prompts when logging on, and forcing users to confirm the prompts would require them to blindly elevate processes they did not explicitly start a bad security practice . As an administrator, you should ensure that no startup programs require elevated privileges . Startup applications started from the RunOnce registry key or specified in a Group Policy setting are unaffected by this feature UAC will still prompt the user for administrator credentials . This allows applications that must make changes after restarting the computer to complete installation successfully.

Registry Hacks Windows Xp

Here's a rough sketch of what's changed In the boot scheme used by the Intel x86 versions of Windows 2000 and XP, the boot partition's boot sector program loaded ntidr, which read the menu file boot.ini, and then loaded Windows. Aside from the boot sector, all of the stuff was in super hidden files (files marked with the system and hidden attributes), stored in the root directory. The Windows Vista and Windows 7 boot sectors load a file called bootmgr from the root directory, which loads a set of programs and DLLs in the boot folder, which then reads the BCD file (actually a Registry hive), and then loads Windows. The BCD hive is also loaded into and visible in the Windows Registry after bootup. In a Windows 7 multiboot configuration, the root directory file bootsect.bak is a copy of the pre-Windows 7 boot sector (XP's version of the boot sector). Choosing Legacy from the Windows 7 boot menu loads and runs the original boot sector program, which carries on as before.

Maximizing Network Performance

The internet is awash with sites that claim to offer helpful advice and utilities that you can use to tweak settings such as the TCP Receive Window (RWIN) and Maximum Transmission Unit (MTU) values, with the goal of improving the performance of a TCP IP-based network. Beware Most of these articles are based on TCP IP settings from previous Windows versions and do not apply to Windows 7, which generally does a good job of configuring connections properly. (The Cable Guy at TechNet explained TCP IP performance enhancements in Windows Vista, which also apply to Windows 7 see 1910.) In fact, tweaking settings without understanding their consequences is a near-certain route to slower performance, and it might result in connection problems when your tweaked packets hit routers and other connection points on the internet that can't handle them. If you feel compelled to experiment, set a System Restore checkpoint first, and read the definitive and exhaustive Tweaking FAQ at the...

Vality to Microsofts longadmired TweakUI Microsoft never made a version of TweakUI for Windows Vista or Windows for

Unfortunately, WinBubble hasn't been updated to take advantage of the ability to brand the logon screen, new to Windows 7. This tweak isn't difficult to implement, however. Simply open the Registry Editor (Start Menu Search, type regedit) and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_ Background. Then, click Edit O New O DWORD, and name it OEMBackground, as shown in Figure 6-11. Finally, double-click the newly created value name and assign it a data value of 1.

Using File Name and Folder Name Completion

By default, the completion character for both file names and folder names is the Tab key. You can select a different completion character by modifying the CompletionChar and PathCompletionChar values in the HKCU Software Microsoft Command Processor registry key. These DWORD values specify the file and folder completion characters, respectively, for the current user. (To change the settings for all users, modify the same values in HKLM Software Microsoft Command Processor.) If you decide to experiment with these registry settings, keep in mind the following If CompletionChar is defined and PathCompletionChar is either absent or set to the hexadecimal value 0x40, the CompletionChar setting works for both file completion and folder completion. In all cases, the completion characters should be specified as hexadecimal values for example, 0x9 for Tab, 0x4 for Ctrl+D, 0x6 for Ctrl + F, 0xC for Ctrl+L, and so on.

How to Manage Backup Using Group Policy Settings

Table 16-1 lists the available policy settings for Windows Backup . Client settings are available for both User and Computer scopes, but Server settings are available only in the Computer scope. These settings are written to the registry on targeted computers under the following registry key

Wheres My Stuff The User Profile Structure

This folder is called a user profile, and it contains not only your personal documents but also some hidden files that contain your personal Windows Registry data (which contains information used by Windows and application programs), temporary files used by Internet Explorer, and so on. Another folder inside Users is named Public, and this folder can be used by any of the computer's users. It's a place to put files that you want to share with anyone else.

How the Registry Is Organized

The Registry is organized a lot like the files and folders on a hard disk. Just as a hard disk can contain partitions, the Registry contains separate sections called top-level keys. In each section is a list of named entries, called keys, which correspond to the folders on a hard disk. And just as a folder can contain files and more nested folders, a Registry key can contain values, which hold information such as numbers or text strings, and more nested keys. Even the way that file folders and Registry keys are described is similar a folder might be named Users brian chapter28, and a Registry key might be named HKEY_CURRENT_USER Software Microsoft. The Registry Editor displays three other sections that look like they are separate top-level keys but that are actually views of information inside HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE or HKEY_USERS HKEY_CURRENT_USER is a shortcut to the subsection of HKEY_USERS that corresponds to the currently logged-on user. That is, when you run the Registry Editor,...

How to Configure Custom Search Providers Using the Registry

Search providers are stored in the registry in either the HKEY_CURRENT_USER or HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE hives at Software Microsoft Internet Explorer SearchScopes. To automate the process of adding search providers to computers, use a test computer to configure the search engines manually, including specifying the default search engine . Then, create a .reg file based on this registry key and its subkeys and distribute it to your client computers 1. To start the Registry Editor, click Start, type Regedit, and then press Enter. You can now distribute the .reg file to computers in your organization. To configure the search engines, double-click the .reg file to open the Registry Editor and apply the settings . Unfortunately, this requires administrative credentials . If you need to distribute the updated settings without explicitly providing administrative credentials, have a developer create a Windows Installer package that creates the registry values and distribute the Windows Installer...

Fixing Problems With System Restore

If a computer problem appears to be caused by a program installation, hardware upgrade, or Windows upgrade, you can return your computer to a previous condition with System Restore. System Restore resets the Windows Registry to its state as of the date time you select, and in Windows 7, System Restore can also check to see what programs will be affected by running System Restore. Here's how to use System Restore to send your computer back in time.

Activating a Retail Copy of Windows

What if you skip past this setting during setup and forget to change it Disabling automatic activation requires a registry edit. (As always, the standard disclaimers apply Don't try this unless you understand the consequences, including the risk that editing the registry incorrectly can damage your system configuration .) Open Registry Editor and select the key HKLM Software Microsoft Windows . In the right pane, double-click the Manual value and change it from 0 to 1 .

Registry Redirection and Reflection

You must close the 64-bit version of the Registry Editor before you can open the 32-bit version, and vice versa, unless you start the second instance of the Registry Editor with the -m command-line argument. Alternatively, you can use the 32-bit version of regedit this presents all information in the standard locations seen by 32-bit applications. When you run regedit from the command line, you get the 64-bit version. However, if you run systemroot syswow64 regedit.exe, you get the 32-bit version and can edit the values seen by 32-bit applications. For more information on reflection, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 305097 at Also, search for the article titled Removal of Windows Registry Reflection.

Restoring the Last Known Good Configuration

Every time you successfully start Windows in normal mode and log on, the operating system makes a record of all currently installed drivers and the contents of the registry key HKLM System CurrentControlSet. This record comes in handy if you install a driver or make a hardware configuration change that causes your system to hang at startup . When Windows displays the Advanced Boot Options menu, you can choose the Last Known Good Configuration (Advanced) option . This menu choice restores the previous, working registry key, effectively removing the changes that are causing the problem .

Restoring the Registry from an Exported Hive

If you need to restore the exported hive from a registry hive file, select the same key in the left pane of the Registry Editor window, click Import on the File menu, and specify the file. You'll see a confirmation prompt letting you know that your action will overwrite (replace) the current key and all its subkeys. This is your last chance to make sure you're importing the hive into the right location, so take a moment to make sure you've selected the correct key before you click Yes .

Backing Up Before You Edit

Registry Editor can save all or portions of your registry in any of the four different formats described here Registration Files The Registration Files option creates a . reg file, a text file that can be read and edited in Notepad or another similar program. A . reg file can be merged into the registry of a system running Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, or Windows 2000. When you merge a .reg file, its keys and values replace the corresponding keys and values in the registry. Using .reg files allows you to edit your registry off line and add your changes to the registry without even opening Registry Editor. You can also use .reg files as an easy way to share registry settings and copy them to other computers Registry hive file is the format of choice if you want to create a backup before working in Registry Editor. That's because when you import a registry hive file, it restores the entire hive to exactly the way it was when you saved it. (The .reg file types, when merged,...

Viewing the Registry

The Registry Editor doesn't have a Start menu item. The easiest way to run it is to type regedit into the Search field on the Start menu. When regedit appears in the results pane under Programs, take one of the following actions, depending on your needs If you are logged on as an Administrator, press Enter or click regedit. When the User Account Control dialog box appears, click Continue. The Registry Editor will run with full elevated privileges. If you are not logged on as an Administrator but need to change settings in only the HKEY_CURRENT_USER section of the Registry, press Enter or click regedit. The Registry Editor will run with reduced privileges, and you will not be able to change systemwide settings.

Editing the Registry

Windows 7 is designed in such a way that direct registry edits by end users are generally unnecessary. When you change some detail about your system's configuration using Control Panel, Control Panel writes the necessary updates to the registry for you, and you needn't be concerned with how it happens . When you install a new piece of hardware or a new program, a myriad of registry modifications take place again, you don't need to know the details . On the other hand, because the designers of Windows couldn't provide a user interface for every conceivable customization you might want to make, sometimes working directly with the registry is the only way to get a job done . And sometimes, even when it's not the only way, it might be the fastest way. Windows includes a registry editor that you should know how to use safely. This section tells you how.

What Is the Registry

The Windows Registry is a database in which Windows and application programs store all manner of configuration settings, startup information, hardware settings, user preferences, file locations, license and registration information, last-viewed file lists, and so on. In addition, the Registry stores the associations between file types and the applications that use them. For example, the Registry holds the information that tells Windows to use Media Player when you click on an MPG movie file. In the early days of DOS and Windows, programs stored this kind of information in a random collection of hundreds of files scattered all over your hard disk. Thankfully, those days are only a dim memory.


To provide an uninstall registry key name, perform the following steps 3. On the Details tab, type the uninstall registry key name in the Uninstall Registry Key Name box. The Windows Deployment Wizard uses the uninstall registry key name to determine whether an application is already installed on the destination computer. This is a subkey of If the Windows Deployment Wizard detects the presence of this key, it assumes that the application is already installed and skips the installation of that application and any dependencies . In the Uninstall Registry Key Name box, type the name of the subkey not the entire path.

Protected Mode

When Internet Explorer runs in Protected Mode, Mandatory Integrity Control (MIC), a Windows Vista and later operating systems feature, forces Internet Explorer to be a low-integrity process . MIC does not allow low-integrity processes to gain write access to high-integrity-level objects, such as files and registry keys, in a user's profile or system locations . Low-integrity processes can write only to folders, files, and registry keys that have been assigned a low-integrity MIC access control entry (ACE) known as a mandatory label. Table 20-1 describes the different integrity levels .

Registry Toolkit

Registry Toolkit is a shareware Registry Editor made by Funduc software, with a nifty search-and-replace system. You can scan the Registry, changing all occurrences of one string to another, which is something most other Windows Registry Editors can't do. Its user interface isn't very comfortable or slick, but if you need to manage a lot of identical changes in the Registry, this is one cool tool. It's free to try, 25 to register, at

Control Sets

The Windows Boot Loader reads control set information from the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE SYSTEM, which is stored in the file SystemRoot System32 Config System, so that the kernel can determine which device drivers need to be loaded during startup Typically, several control sets exist, with the actual number depending on how often system configuration settings change The kernel creates the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE HARDWARE, which contains the hardware data collected at system startup . Windows supports an extensive set of devices, with additional drivers not on the Windows operating system DVD provided by hardware manufacturers . Drivers are kernel-mode features required by devices to function within an operating system. Services are features that support operating system and application functions and act as network servers. Services can run in a different context than user applications and typically do not offer many user-configurable options .

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