Screwed up Registry

Custom / CUSTOM
March 4, 2009 at 13:12:16
Specs: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, 3.01 GHz / 1023 MB
Hey Folks, I was deleting some stuff out of my registry a few days ago and ended up with a comp. that is totally messed up. XP will boot but once it is loaded, there is no access to anything really. EXEs won't start, not even regedit. I can get onto Firefox if I click on a link that was already on the computer, I hoped to restore the registry with backups that I have but I cant run any program that will allow the registry to be backed up. I tried a solution from Microsoft... something to do with repairing a registry if the comp won't boot, but I have an OEM installation of XP so that didn't work. I tried going through instructions on how to boot the comp with a USB key but found that rather confusing. Any ideas? I am writing this from a Windows 7 HDD that I have installed in this comp as a secondary drive in case there is something I can do from this drive to recover the registry.

See More: Screwed up Registry

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#1
March 4, 2009 at 13:34:08
You would need a copy/backup of the registry BEFORE you made the changes.

Otherwise its do a repair install time.

A one sentence question will result in a one sentence answer.


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#2
March 4, 2009 at 13:46:24
I DO have a backup from before.

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#3
March 4, 2009 at 14:27:53
Then use the backup to restore to original configuration and don't manually edit anymore. That is what registry cleaners are for.

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Related Solutions

#4
March 4, 2009 at 15:33:19
I agree with you on that last part... and I feel really goofy doing this.

But how do I restore using the .reg backup if I cant run any exe's in Windows?


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#5
March 4, 2009 at 15:37:51
bluebomber101, If the reg backup is a .reg file either double click it or right click it and choose "Merge".

Tufenuf


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#6
March 4, 2009 at 15:40:44
Can you do a System Restore, that will restore the Registry.

For the 'exe' problem, try #12 on the left at
http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_...


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#7
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#8
March 4, 2009 at 16:01:05
When I double click most files (with the exception of files that are used by OpenOffice, oddly enough) I get the screen asking what program to use to open the file. So when I click on .reg files, I point to the Registry Editor to open the .reg file but it returns an error. I can't think of it right now as I am in Windows 7...

I can't do a System Restore as I can't open any exe files.

Dan


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#9
March 4, 2009 at 16:08:42
bluebomber101, Try downloading the reg file fix at the link posted in Response Number 6.

If you can't run the reg file try this:

Press CTRL-ALT-DEL and open Task Manager. Once there, click File, then hold down the CTRL key and click New Task (Run). This will open a Command Prompt window. Enter REGEDIT.EXE and press Enter. Once regedit is open click File>Import and locate that reg file fix, hilite it and click Open.

Tufenuf


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#10
March 4, 2009 at 17:23:49
Tufenuf, in order to download the fix posted in #6, I clicked on the link and it gave me a page with a bunch of registry info. Is the idea to copy and paste that data into the registry? If so, I can't, as I can't open the registry.

Wait a minute... just after writing the above, I tried your solution using the Task Manager... I got Regedit to open and then went to import the reg file but got the following message...

Cannot import 'file name' Error Accessing the registry.

OtheHill, I took a look at links you posted. Some I've tried with no success, some I haven't. I will try the ones that I haven't and see what happens. The last time I tried to get the recovery console, I couldn't get in as my hard drive uses RAID and the Windows installation complained that it couldn't see the hard drive cuz the RAID drivers weren't installed. So.. either today or tomorrow I will install the hard drive temporarily on the regular IDE line and try to get into the Recovery Console that way... Thanks


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#11
March 4, 2009 at 17:55:24
bluebomber101, Go to the link below and download the "REG File Association Fix ", and unzip or extract it to your desktop. Then follow the same procedure in my Response Number 9. If you are successful then try the same procedure for the exefix reg file again.

http://www.dougknox.com/xp/file_ass...

Tufenuf


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#12
March 4, 2009 at 17:58:26
Try this restoring registry from recovery console method.

Silence is golden but duct tape is silver


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#13
March 4, 2009 at 18:35:29
Good work folks.. we're almost there...

Tufenuf, the Reg File Association and Exefix seemed to stick... at the very least, Regedit told me that were successfully installed into the registry. The other good thing is that Regedit will now open with the old Start, Run procedure.

A number of EXE's on the desktop and elsewhere are now back with their old icons and a number of startup programs that had quit starting because of the problem, are now starting. However, whenever I double click on exe's, and some LNK (links) on desktop.. with the exception of some... the windows Calculator program starts instead. I looked under Folder Options, File Types, to see if the calculator really is set up to open up LNK and it appears that its not.

The .reg file that contains my last registry backup still does not want to be added to the registry. I get the same error...

Cannot import 'file name' Error Accessing the registry


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#14
March 4, 2009 at 18:42:20
bluebomber101, Try the LNK (Shortcut) File Association Fix and the URL File Association Fix at the link below.

http://www.dougknox.com/xp/file_ass...

Tufenuf


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#15
March 4, 2009 at 18:47:15
Thanks Tufenuf, a few minutes before you posted that I found that same fix and tried it. Now my links point to the right programs but they are without icons at the moment. That registry backup I have still won't stick and is returning the same error message. Thanks bud

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#16
March 4, 2009 at 18:57:49
bluebomber101, Those icons will probably come back after you restart your computer. As far as the reg backup file, does it have a .reg extension. Also now that your .exe files are working would you consider a System Restore to the closest date prior to these problems? A System Restore will also restore the registry. It's your call but let us know how it's going.

Tufenuf


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#17
March 4, 2009 at 19:44:17
I restarted the comp, and the icons are still the same. Oddly, System Restore will start but it will not allow any restores..at least not any restores to around the time that the comp screwed up.

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#18
March 4, 2009 at 19:52:49
"I restarted the comp, and the icons are still the same."

Try this:
Right click your desktop, choose Properties, under the Settings tab change the Color Quality from 32 bit to 16 bit, click Apply/OK. Now go back and change the Color Quality from 16 bit to 32 bit, click Apply/OK. This should rebuild the iconcache.db file and may correct the problem.

Tufenuf


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#19
March 5, 2009 at 06:59:19
I would say the next time be very careful and only delete what you're sure you should.

For now, why not try a Windows Repair?

EEOC


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#20
March 5, 2009 at 07:00:51
Ugh, changing the color quality worked fine but then I tried to do a System Restore and now when I try to boot it gives me an ntldr error message and tells me to do a recovery recovery console....

AHHHHHHHHH I HAD IT!!!!


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#21
March 5, 2009 at 08:02:56
You would already be up and running if you had done a repair install.

A one sentence question will result in a one sentence answer.


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#22
March 5, 2009 at 08:16:05
Run a Windows Repair.

EEOC


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#23
March 5, 2009 at 09:47:02
Well it looks like I'm good to go. When I ran the repair, I ran FixMBR and fixboot and ended up with the Can't Find NTLDR error, but thats fixed.

Thanks folks..

Now, what got me in this mess to start with was trying to get rid of Network Magics items in my Properties of Local Area Connection. Anyone know how to get rid of these?

Thanks


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#24
March 5, 2009 at 09:55:06
If you have removed a program and orphan files are still around and making their presence known with nag screens, etc. a registry cleaner should be able to identify those entries.

If you want to be safe use the backup function provided with most registry cleaners. I have use many in the past but have settled into using CCleaner's registry module. It isn't too agressive and usually gets the job done safely. The cleaner module is excellent too. Some recommend CCleaner slim because it comes without yahoo toolbar.

If in doubt about items found let CCleaner make a backup file. I save it to the desktop. If all is well after a day or so I delete the file. I have NEVER had to restore using such a file. I usually don't even bother with the backup but do recommend it to others.


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#25
March 5, 2009 at 14:00:58
Actually, I HAD used CCleaner, and Regseeker but there were still many registry entries pertaining to Network Magic and Pure Networks, etc, afterwards.

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#26
March 5, 2009 at 15:42:05
Did you first remove the program? I am not familiar with the programs you mentioned. However, many programs have an uninstall program as part of the installation. When that is included that is the preferable method of removal. If you are leery of deleting entries in the registry perhaps re-installing the programs and then removing them with their uninstaller would produce better results.

Or you could start a new thread seeking advice on more thorough registry cleaners. I used to use one called JV Power Tools until it was bought and turned commercial. The last freeware version is still in the wild and in use by some. I wouldn't trust it anymore. Must be two years since it was updated.

Below is a link to pure networks site. There is a FAQ and a forum there. Enter the search term "uninstall" in the FAQ. Post in the forum.

http://www.purenetworks.com/support


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#27
March 5, 2009 at 15:50:30
TuneupUtilities also has a good registry cleaner. You can download the trial and use it's full functionality for 30 days.

Silence is golden but duct tape is silver


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