- Using your PC on a daily basis can eventually lead to a build-up of residual files that not only take up disk space but can also lead to system errors and even crashes.
- This guide contains what we believe to be the best registry cleaners currently on the market!
- When dealing with residual data, or faulty registry keys, good Optimization Software is a must.
- For more great tweaking tools, check out our dedicated Utilities and Tools Hub.
Windows is a complicated operating system, but it is complicated only because of how customizable it is in terms of its behavior.
You can practically change everything in Windows – that’s also why it falls prone to so many attacks. So where does Windows store all these settings? In the registry.
However, this begs the question:
What is a Windows Registry?
In simple terms, Windows Registry is a database that exists within the Windows 10 operating system, and it is the place where all of the most important information is stored.
This includes, but is not limited to, information, user settings, and a variety of other parameters that affect both the hardware components and the software installed on your PC.
However, there’s nothing to gain about knowing what a Windows Registry is if you have no idea how to access it.
How do I access Windows Registry?
Windows Registry can be accessed in three ways:
- In the search box on the taskbar, type regedit
- Select the top result for Registry Editor
- Press the Start button
- Type in run and open the Run console
- Enter regedit and press OK
Use a dedicated registry finder that will do the job for you.
Of course, accessing these registries is only possible if you have the appropriate registry permissions. Having issues with registry permissions can not only prevent you from accessing the registries themselves, but also prevent you from installing software.
To read more about the issue, check out this in-depth article.
Advanced users can access these registries fairly easy, and knowing which ones affect which components is made easy by the fact that they are organized into Registry Keys.
What are registry keys used for?
As mentioned above, keys are ways through which your registries are organized based on their functions, and there are 5 in total:
Each of these keys hold specific information, so those that have a certain experience with such things can easily modify their PC’s settings en-masse just by changing a few digits in the right registry.
However, keys aren’t the only thing that make up the Windows registry, as it is also composed of different value types:
- A multi-line string value
- Unlike the previous value type, this is an expanded string value
- As the name says, this is a binary value
- This is similar to a binary value, but also supports 32-bit decimal and hex values
- This is similar to DWORD but it’s stored as a 64-bit value
In order for your system to run impeccably, both keys and data values need to be written properly, otherwise you’ll end up dealing with broken registry items.
What is a broken registry item?
In simple terms, broken registry items are basically corrupted or deleted registries that affect the way your PC works.
Their existence can lead to a variety of problems, including frequent errors, the inability to open apps, driver issues and hardware unresponsiveness, BSoD errors, and more.
Broken registry items can be caused by frequent installs and uninstalls of software on your PC, or even tampering by those with not enough experience.
Fortunately enough, there are ways of tracking any changes that occur with your registries, and this can be done with the help of dedicated registry monitoring tools.
Alternatively, there are even ways through which you can undo registry changes altogether, and while these usually involve a certain degree of skill and experience, we laid the steps out for you in this step-by-step guide.
But when you have so many things to keep track of, the registry can get pretty messy after a while and you’ll end up having to clean up your registry.
Alternatively, if you feel like you might damage your PC more that you could do it any good, you can also employ the use of a registry cleaner.
What is a registry cleaner?
A registry cleaner is a third party software tool that helps you fix any damages that may occur to your registry database.
Most registry cleaners work by comparing your PC’s current registries to an online template or database of its own, and it basically replaces whichever entries it deems to be broken, missing, or of an incorrect value.
This list will take you through some of the best Windows 10 registry cleaners out there. You can also read our post in which we show how to fix a corrupt registry on Windows 10.
Since you’ll be using third-party tools to change the registry files of your PC, make sure you know how to restore your registries by yourself in case something goes wrong, even without a backup.
What are the best tools to clean, repair, and optimize Windows 10’s Registry?
- Advanced System Care
- Registry Repair
- Wise Registry Cleaner
- Iolo System Mechanic
This post was written by Madalina Dinita and was first posted to WindowsReport
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