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  • Registry Editor

    1. Disable Registry Editing Tools (All Windows)

    This restriction disables the ability to interactively run the standard Microsoft registry editing tools such as REGEDIT and REGEDT32.

    Warning: Be careful with this setting because once you enter this key into the registry you will not be able to use Regedit to undo the change. Consider wisely before using this modification so that you do not lock yourself out of the registry.

    Create a new DWORD value named 'DisableRegistryTools' and set the value to '1' to disable registry editing functions. This can also be enabled on a user-by-user basis by putting the same value in the [HKEY_CURRENT_USER] hive.

    Note: This setting will disable all standard Microsoft registry editing tools, but not WinGuides Tweak Manager.


    Settings:
    User Key: [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System]
    Name: DisableRegistryTools
    Type: REG_DWORD (DWORD Value)
    Value: (0 = allow regedit, 1 = disable regedit)

    2. Specify Anonymous Remote Registry Access (Windows NT/2000/XP)

    This tweak allows you to specify which keys under the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE hive that anonymous users are allowed to access remotely. This is useful because some services require remote access to the registry to function correctly.

    Create a new Multi-String value, or modify the existing value called 'Machine' using the settings below.

    Note: These keys will bypass general access restrictions but will still be restricted if an explicit access restriction exists for that location.

    Settings:
    System Key: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SecurePipeServers\winreg\AllowedPaths]
    Name: Machine
    Type: REG_MULTI_SZ (Multi-String Value)

    3. Windows Registry Checker Settings (Windows 98/Me)

    Windows 98 and Me include the Registry Checker tool which makes a daily backup copy of registry and other system files. These settings allow you to configure the behaviour of the Scanreg utility.

    The Registry Checker is normally started through the registry. You can change whether it is launched by changing following these steps.

    1. Open your registry and find the key [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run].
    2. To enable the Registry Checker create a string value called "ScanRegistry" and set it to "C:\Windows\Scanregw.exe /autorun".
    3. To disable the Registry Checker delete the string value called "ScanRegistry".
    4. The change will take effect the next time the system is started.
    The other configuration options for the Registry Checker are stored in the SCANREG.INI file found in the Windows directory (e.g. "C:\Windows\Scanreg.ini"). To change these parameters open the INI file using a text editor such as Windows Notepad.

    Each parameter is listed in the format Option=Value, to change a value edit the text after the equals sign for the options below.

    Backup=
    A value of 1 (default) causes a backup copy of your registry to be made the first time you start your computer on any given day (determined by the system clock).
    A value of 0 disables registry backup (not recommended).

    Optimize=
    A value of 1 (default) automatically optimizes your current registry if it contains 500 kilobytes (KB) of unused space.
    A value of 0 does not automatically optimize your current registry.

    MaxBackupCopies=
    A value between 0 and 99 (default is 5) saves the last 5 registry backups in the backup folder. Only five backups are displayed using the Registry Checker for MS-DOS, higher numbers can be restored manually.

    BackupDirectory=
    To change the location in which registry backups are saved, type the full path to the folder. By default, this entry does not contain a value, and registry backups are automatically saved in the Windows\Sysbckup folder.

    Files=
    This entry does not exist by default, and is used to specify additional files you want to back up in the .cab file. To specify additional files to be backed up, type Files=[folder code],[file name], where [folder code] is the numerical code for the folder in which the file you want to back up is located, and [file name] is the name of the file you want to back up. If you want to back up multiple files in the same location, separate each file name using a comma (,) and no spaces.

    The following table lists the possible folder codes:

    Code Folder
    10 Windows directory (e.g. C:\Windows)
    11 Windows System directory (e.g. C:\Windows\System)
    30 Root directory (e.g. C:\)
    31 Root host directory (e.g. C:\)

    For example, if you want to back up the WIN.INI and CONTROL.INI files located in the Windows folder, include the following line:

    Files=10,win.ini,control.ini
    Or if you want to back up the AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files located in the root directory, include the following line:
    Files=30,autoexec.bat,config.sys

    Settings:
    System Key: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run]
    Name: ScanRegistry
    Type: REG_SZ (String Value)

    4. Prevent Regedit from Saving the Last Location (Windows 2000/XP)

    By default, when you start Regedit.exe, it displays the last key you accessed the last time you ran Regedit. This tweak describes how to prevent this behavior.

    1. Open your registry using Regedt32.exe and find the key:
      [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Applets\Regedit]
    2. Double-click the "LastKey" value, clear the entry in the String box, and then click OK.
    3. Highlight the key, and then click Permissions on the Security menu.
    4. Remove Full Control access for any user who does not want Regedit to display the last key the user accessed in the previous Regedit session, and then click OK. (Please note that if permissions cannot be removed, they may need to be denied.)
    5. Quit Regedt32.exe.

    Note: If you do not want to deny access to users, there is an easy way to close all keys and hives after you start Regedit. After you start Regedit, press and hold down SHIFT+LEFT ARROW to collapse all the entries back to the My Computer entry. You must do this each time you start Regedit.

    Settings:
    User Key: [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Applets\Regedit]
    Name: LastKey
    Type: REG_SZ (String Value)

    5. Repair the Registry Editor (Windows 2000/Me/XP)

    This tweak allows you to reset the location and parameters of the Registry Editor (REGEDIT) back to the system defaults. This is useful if Regedit is not being displayed correctly.

    Make a backup of the key and then delete the values: "FindFlags", "LastKey" and "View".


    Settings:
    User Key: [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Applets\Regedit]


    6. Avoid Accidental Registry Imports with Regedit (All Windows)

    By default if you double-click on a file with a '.REG' extension the file will be imported into the system registry. You can change the default so it opens the file for editing instead.

    You can change the default by either of the two methods below:

    Through the Registry

    1. Open your registry and find the key below.
    2. Change the (Default) value to equal "edit".
    3. Exit your registry editor.
    Using the GUI
    From either Explorer or My Computer click on View -> Options, then the 'File Types' tab. Scroll down the list of registered file type until you find 'Registration Entries', highlight it and click 'Edit'. Listed in the 'Actions' box should be three actions: Edit, Merge and Print. Highlight 'Edit' and click 'Set Default', Edit should become Bold.

    Next time you double-click on a .REG file, notepad should open instead. You can still import a file by simply right-click on it and select 'Merge'.

    Settings:
    System Key: [HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\regfile\shell]
    Name: (Default)
    Type: REG_SZ (String Value)
    Value: edit


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