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Dont blow it back up the regestry.

post #1 of 2
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Ok I helped a poor slob who was messing around with regedit and hosed his regestry. This got me to thinking why would he feel he needed to do anything orher than run regedit and start messing around. We all talk about jumping in and editing this key or that key but we never stop to think about the noobs that want to do these operations. We all know to back up our regestry before we edit but you dont see it said or tell them how.

Well this is for them.

How to backup the Windows XP Registry

Backing up the XP Registry - Three methods
Method 1:

Using System Restore
One way to backup the registry is to create a System Restore snapshot. System Restore returns your computer to a previous snapshot without losing recent personal information, such as documents, history lists, favorites, or e-mail. It monitors the computer and many applications for changes and creates restore points. You restore these snapshots when your configuration isn't working. This method is unreliable in case you want to rollback the registry changes made a longtime ago, in which case the System Restore might have purged that particular restore point - due to space constraints or due to a recent system restore point or even a Restore point corruption. Please remember, System Restore points get deleted for many reasons, making it unreliable, especially in the long run.
Method 2:

Backing up the selected branch of the registry by exporting (Best)

This method is preferred if you're making changes to a specific key/area of the registry. To backup a selected branch/key in the registry, try this:
  • Click Start, and then click Run.
  • In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK
  • Locate and then click the key that contains the value that you want to edit
  • On the File menu, click Export.
  • In the Save in box, select a location where you want to save the Registration Entries (.reg)
  • In the File name box, type a file name, and then click Save.
(Backing up a selected branch/key of the registry)
Now that you've created a Registry backup for that particular key. Save the REG file in a safer location in case you want to undo the registry changes made. You can restore the settings by just double-clicking the REG file. It automatically merges the contents to the Registry.
Method 2 and a half.

Export registry keys using a command-line (Console Registry Tool)
You can use the Console Registry Tool for Windows (Reg.exe) to edit the registry. For help with the Reg.exe tool, type reg /? at the Command Prompt, and then click OK.

ExampleTo export the key [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\\Software\\IOLO] and it's sub-keys, try this from Command Prompt:
REG EXPORT HKCU\\Software\\IOLO C:\\IOLO.REG

To view the REG contents type notepad C:\\iolo.reg in Start, Run dialog. Console Registry Tool is extremely handy for network admins and also for home users.
Method 3:

Backing up the whole registry ("System state")

For backing up the whole registry, use the NTBackup utility to back up the System State. The System State includes the registry, the COM+ Class Registration Database, and your boot files. See section "Back Up the Whole Registry" in the following article:

NOTENTBACKUP is not installed by default in Windows XP Home Edition. Install it using the instructions available at: Q302894.
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Logisys 500 Watt Logisys CS888CL Clear EL Cheepo 800dpi optical 
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post #2 of 2
Good idea for the noobs.
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