How to find junk in registry (WinXP)

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by axial, Feb 16, 2009.

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  1. axial

    axial Registered Member

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    Some recent threads here have discussed registry cleaners; having had bad experiences with registry cleaners in the past I'm not looking for an "auto" cleaner, but rather I'm wondering if any of the tools have a "search for suspect entries" capability.

    As an example, here's one I happened to find today. :gack:
     

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  2. ambient_88

    ambient_88 Registered Member

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    Traversing through the registry manually is a laborious process, so if you want to find suspicious entries, your best bet is to use a registry cleaner. You don't have to perform the cleaning; just look at the entries.
     
  3. AKAJohnDoe

    AKAJohnDoe Registered Member

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    While even REGEDIT has a simple FIND facility, products such as JV16 PowerTools have the ability to find many different search strings in a single pass.

    FWIW, 99% of the "junk" in any registry is 100% harmless.
     
  4. axial

    axial Registered Member

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    Are there utilities that log registry changes -- maybe just registry additions or deletions, not changes to existing keys?

    I most likely wouldn't have noticed the key shown above except that i happened to need to look at a key for another app listed alphabetically near it, so a search tool wouldn't have helped in this particular instance.
     
  5. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    axial, perhaps RegShot is the utility you are looking for.
     
  6. axial

    axial Registered Member

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    Searching my conscience ... I probably would be better off with something that will run unobtrusively (well, one can always hope) in the background, otherwise I'll forget to use it :oops:

    I just happened across Dedoimedo's website where he mentioned using "System Safety Monitor"

    http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/ms-dotnet-firefox.html

    which sounds like it might be a possibility. Unfortunately the link to "System Safety Limited" on MajorGeeks is incorrect, so I haven't tracked down the website source to check on its functionality yet.
     
  7. ambient_88

    ambient_88 Registered Member

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    System Safety Monitor's development is officially on hold.
     
  8. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

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    When looking to clean out kunk or old installs, be darn sure you check this KEY:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Enum\Root

    .....and do a LINE BY LINE eyeball manual search for LEGACY apps that have "LOCKED" the registry's permissions and "first" checkmark to "unlock" them, otherwise they will stay lodged like a tube of glue forever in the registry and will not delete with any program.

    i GO THRU THIS SAME ROUTINE EVEN WITH LEGIT APPS THAT ON UNINSTALL STILL LEAVE THEIR NAMES/KEYS/VALUES LEFT BEHIND. A real pain sometimes.

    I even use a good registry search app named RegCrawler and even it misses some of them and is why i maually go to every CURRENT CONTROL SET\ENUM to dig them out.

    EASTER
     
  9. axial

    axial Registered Member

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    Thank you all for your comments.

    Following up on Easter's recommendation in other threads I've been looking at the utilities on http://nirsoft.net -- amazing collection, absolutely amazing.
     
  10. Cutting_Edgetech

    Cutting_Edgetech Registered Member

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    I use the registry editor from TuneUp Utilities. If you have recently uninstalled any programs then just do a search using the name of the program, and also the company that produces the program. Norton antivirus for instance. You would search your registry using the word Norton, and also using the word Symantec. I'm sure you already knew this though. The problem is you need knowledge about how the registry works in order to know for sure what is safe to remove. I have been manually cleaning my registry for years, and it can be time consuming. It has kept my computer running smooth though. I always keep an up to date system backup of my operating system. Your best option is to make a complete backup before installing new software. Keep the backup on an external drive. If you find out that the software didn't meet your expectations then just revert your drive back to its original state. A few orphaned files in the registry is not going to degrade your system performance though. I understand trying to keep the perfect system though. I use Acronis True Image 11. Firse Defense ISR is another good program.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009
  11. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

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    @axial

    Keep a close watch on NIRSOFT, lately he is been updating like mad his great assembly compiled lightning quick utilities and adding more and more features in them. This is the longest stretch that i ever seen him update those tools, so he must have a lot of extra time now to spend fine tuning those apps.

    I've emailed him and always got a swift response if you ever have an inquiry or suggestion for him, he's very open minded and takes all opinions/reports into prompt consideration.

    CHECK OUT HIS NEWEST PROGRAM!
    http://nirsoft.net/utils/alternate_data_streams.html

    EASTER
     
  12. bgoodman4

    bgoodman4 Registered Member

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    I am not a sophisticated PC user (but I am learning a lot here) so I add this tentatively. I use a program called Registry Fix. It has a backup feature that will let you backup the registry before you clean it as well as it will automatically backup any changes it makes. If you find you are having a problem after cleaning the registry you can always restore it. It also allows you to see all the entries it feels are junk so someone more knowledgeable than I am can look at the entries and decide if they want to keep them for some reason. Oh yes, you can also exclude entries from scans so if you keep an entry it will not be flagged next time a scan is done.

    The program can be found here http://www.registryfix.com
     
  13. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

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    You must possess a form of ESP. LoL

    I just been checking this app over purely at random and was trying to decide if i should give it a test compared to RegCure that i use now.

    Thanks

    EASTER
     
  14. Meriadoc

    Meriadoc Registered Member

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  15. PROROOTECT

    PROROOTECT Registered Member

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  16. fistico

    fistico Registered Member

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    Wise Registry Cleaner and Wise Disk Cleaner
    are Not very good at what they do.

    There are better -Free- Registry Cleaners like Argente, RegSeeker (used in Safe mode: Green), Comodo etc.
     
  17. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    is jv16 power tool able to get rid of these junkies entries?
     
  18. AKAJohnDoe

    AKAJohnDoe Registered Member

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    Yes, all three of the MaceCraft products are capable (jv16 PowerTools, RegSupreme, RegSupreme Pro). A license for a higher-level product also licenses the lower-level products. The level of the products, high to low, is the order they are listed here.
     
  19. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    have jv16 2009 or 2008 the same feature of regsupreme pro?
     
  20. the Tester

    the Tester Registered Member

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    With the right settings System TuneUp will clean off the junk that Shellbag View exposes.
    The 'Erase History" tool worked well for me.
     
  21. AKAJohnDoe

    AKAJohnDoe Registered Member

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    RegSupreme >> RegSupreme Pro >> jv16PowerTools in order of increasing functionality. The MaceCraft website is probably the best source of comparative information on these products.
     
  22. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

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    Didn't know that the Tester so thanks for that heads up, the reg file is what i been using to dump those old ShellBags leftover entries but i knew there must be others too.

    I have to tell you guys HONESTLY, when i clean out both the registry and also wipe off old file leftovers i get a very noticable snappier system, so Microsoft IMO is a sloppy slum lord when it comes to keeping Windows system clean and running at optimum perfomance AFAIK.

    Why gum up Hard Drives with all that material which is of no use anymore?
     
  23. the Tester

    the Tester Registered Member

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    I used ShellBags to test some freeware cleaners also. System TuneUp cleaned better than anything else I tried.

    I agree with your assessment of Microsoft as sloppy slumlord. And I notice a difference in performance when I keep Windows XP clean.
     
  24. gud4u

    gud4u Registered Member

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    For quick manual searches I use RegSeeker.

    It's an oldie (2002 - 2003 vintage), but works very well.

    Hope this helps!
     
  25. tipo

    tipo Registered Member

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    you shouldn`t mess with the registry... the suspicious ones will be find by your security suite...
     
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