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Beginners Guides: The Registry: Backups, Repairs, and Protection
Beginners Guides: The Registry: Backups, Repairs, and Protection - PCSTATS
The Registry is crucial to Windows, but if you know how to edit it, you can customize your system in places you never thought possible.
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: PCSTATS Aug 09 2004   M. Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > PCSTATS

Enabling System Restore

Windows XP also includes a useful system restore tool which can be used to roll back your system's registry and system configuration to a previous point in time. It does this by taking 'snapshots' (similar to a system state backup) of your system's status at regular intervals. For it to be able to help you though, you need to make sure it is enabled. System restore is turned on by default in Windows XP, but it can be a hard disk space eater, so many users turn it off.

To ensure system restore is active: Right click 'my computer' and select 'properties' then the 'system restore' tab.

Ensure that the 'turn off system restore on all drives' box is not checked and that the status for your hard drives is listed as 'monitoring.'

Repairing the registry

There are several reasons why you might have a need to repair your Windows XP registry. You may have made a mistake while editing or adding a value or accidentally deleted a vital key or value for example. In most cases, you can simply restore a previous registry backup to fix this sort of problem, or use XP's built in system restore utility, which we will detail in a moment.

A worse scenario would be malicious software that has changed your registry to a state where the computer will not boot. In this case, it becomes necessary to restore the registry from outside the familiar confines of the Windows interface.

Let's cover both situations, beginning with the easier one first. You've made changes to the registry, and now things are not working quite right but you can still access REGEDIT.

To start with, if you made a backup of your registry (you did do it, didn't you?), restoring this should solve your problems.

Open up REGEDIT, go to the 'file' menu and select 'import.' Locate the registry backup file you made (whether it's a .reg or hive file, you'll need to change the 'files of type' box to the appropriate setting) and open it. You will be prompted for permission to restore the registry. Do so and reboot. If your troubles were caused by a rogue registry entry or edit, they should be gone now.

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Contents of Article: PCSTATS
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guides: The Registry: Backups, Repairs, and Protection
 Pg 2.  A deeper look at the XP registry
 Pg 3.  Other Registry Values
 Pg 4.  Backing up Windows Registry Manually
 Pg 5.  Using WindowsXP Backup
 Pg 6.  — Enabling System Restore
 Pg 7.  Restoring the Registry
 Pg 8.  Safe Registry Procedures
 Pg 9.  Starter Registry Hacks

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