How to Access the Registry
The Windows registry is a database which stores the system settings on Windows operating systems. The use of the registry began with Windows 3.1 since then it has been an integral part of all versions of Windows. Within the registry you will be able to find information on the hardware that is currently operational on the system. It allows the system to identify and define the connections between different components within the user interface. It is possible to edit the registry using a registry editor. This is not a function that most people will necessarily use or need to use. Caution must be taken when attempting to make any changes to the registry. There is a risk that the entire system can be affected if incorrect adjustments are made in the registry editor. For this reason, it is best not to edit the registry without knowing what you are doing. The registry editor is identical for both Vista and Windows 7 editions. Older versions of the registry will have slightly altered appearances. Accessing the registry for all windows systems is a quick and easy process that takes no more than a matter of seconds.
Windows Vista and Windows 7
Accessing the registry in Windows 7 and Windows Vista is done in the same way.
- Go to the “start” option and click it to open the start menu.
- Open the search box.
- Enter regedit in the designated field and press enter.
- A message will appear that asks you to verify if you would like to continue. Click on the [continue] button. Immediately the registry will open.
Windows Xp, Windows NT, Windows 98
To open the registry in Windows XP, NT or 98 operating systems, follow the simple steps below.
- Go to the “start” menu at the bottom left of the task bar.
- Once the “start” menu opens click on the “run” option that should open a dialogue box with an area to enter the chosen command.
- Type the words regedit and press enter.
- You will be prompted to verify that this is the action you would like to do. Click OK which should take you to the registry editor.
There are two ways to access the registry using Windows 95. Either way will suffice.
- Go to My Computer. (There should be an icon on your desktop; if it is there double click it to open the My Computer dialogue. If the icon is not available on the desktop go to the start menu and access My Computer from the start menu.).
- Look for the Registry Editor icon and then double click it to gain access to it.
- Like all other Windows operating systems, you can access the registry by going to the start menu and then opening the “run” dialogue then typing regedit in the specified field.
- Any changes that are made in the registry have the potential to affect the overall operation of your computer. Be careful not to make any changes if they are not entirely necessary.