How to Repair Your Registry

by Emilio Alvarez

Registry problems and corrupted keys are caused by various factors, such as system crashes, infected programs, malware and virus, and manipulating registry keys incorrectly. Determining what is affecting your registry can help you find the best repair method. Options include removing unnecessary programs, restoring the system to a previous healthy state or running third-party repair tools. Proceed with caution when working with the Registry Editor, since errors could seriously damage your system.

Remove Unnecessary Programs

1

Remove unnecessary programs from your registry. Click "Start" and "Run." Type "regedit" and press "Enter."

2

Expand the "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE" hive on the left pane's tree directory. Expand "SOFTWARE," "Microsoft," "Windows," "CurrentVersion" and "Uninstall."

3

Delete unnecessary programs by right-clicking and choosing "Delete" from the pop-up menu. Do not delete programs if you are unsure of what you are doing.

4

Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer.

System Restore

1

Click "Start" and "Run." Type "msconfig" and press "Enter." The System Configuration utility opens.

2

Select the "General" tab and click "Launch System Restore." The System Restore wizard opens.

3

Choose the radio button that corresponds to the "Restore my computer to an earlier time" option and click "Next."

4

Choose a date to which the system should restore. This restore point should be a previous date when your system was working fine. Click "Next."

5

Confirm the chosen restore point and click "Next." Allow for the system restore process to complete.

Repair Tools

1

Purchase a registry repair tool or download free third-party applications, such as "Little Registry Cleaner," "CCleaner" or "Registry Repair" (see Resources).

2

Install the registry repair tool and perform a system scan.

3

Allow the registry repair tool to complete the scan and display the results. Most repair tools will list and indicate all registry invalid paths, corrupted keys, dead entries within the registry and invalid file associations, invalid Active X controls and unused file extensions.

4

Repair all affected keys by clicking the "Repair," "Fix" or "Clean" option. This will vary depending on the software you use. Allow for the program to complete the repair process and restart your computer.

About the Author

Emilio Alvarez has a Bachelor of Science in computer science from San Diego State University and a minor in music composition from Southwestern College, San Diego. He has been writing since 2002 and has published short stories with Editorial Dunken (Buenos Aires, Argentina), where his work is part of a Spanish anthology: "El libro de talleres."