Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications
. There are a number of them available and some are safer than others. Keep in mind that no two registry cleaners work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad" entry. One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause a problem when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.
The Windows registry http://www.pcsupportadvisor.com/sasample/E1209.pdf
is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component
because it is where Windows "remembers
" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system unbootable.
The usefulness of cleaning the registry is highly overrated and can be dangerous. In most cases, using a cleaner to remove obsolete, invalid, and erroneous entries does not affect system performance but it can result in "unpredictable results
". Unless you have a particular problem that requires a registry edit to correct it, I would suggest you leave the registry alone. Using registry cleaning tools unnecessarily
could lead to disastrous effects on your operating system such as preventing it from ever starting again. For routine use, the benefits to your computer are negligible while the potential risks are great
Edited by dc3, 01 September 2008 - 04:05 AM.