How to Reset Windows XP Registry to Default

by Brendan O'Brien
computer image by blaine stiger from

Your Windows XP operating system computer is driven by the registry, which is a large set of files and folders full of complex settings. If you make an error in the registry or inadvertently delete a file, you can restore the registry's original default settings.

Step 1

Click the "Start" button in the lower-left corner of your desktop. Scroll up and click "Run."

Step 2

Type "%SystemRoot%\System32\Restore\Rstrui.exe" (without the quotes) in the field and press the "OK" button.

Step 3

Press the "Restore my computer to an earlier time" choice and then click the "Next" button.

Step 4

Select "System checkpoint" and then click "Guided Help (Registry Backup)." Click the "Next" button and then click the "OK" button if a confirmation window appears.

Step 5

Click the "Next" button and wait for the restoration to complete. The system will restart itself.

Click the "OK" button on the "System Restore" page.


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About the Author

Brendan O'Brien is a professional journalist in Milwaukee, Wis. He has worked for several news organizations, newspapers such as the "Milwaukee Journal Sentinel" and trade magazines during his career of more than 15 years. He is currently a freelance writer who works for several publications.

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