FREE: RegAlyzer – A nifty free Registry editor

Michael PietroforteMVP By Michael Pietroforte - Fri, March 28, 2008 - 8 comments google+ icon

Michael Pietroforte is the founder and editor of 4sysops. He is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) with more than 30 years of experience in system administration.

Regedit, the Registry editor that comes with Windows is a rather simple tool. It makes sense to use a third-party tool, even if you only have to edit the Windows Registry every once in a while. RegAlyzer is a free Registry editor with useful features.

RegAlyzer_search_criteria My favorite feature is its search functionality. RegAlyzer supports different search criteria such as wildcards, Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) and even regular expressions. You can also limit your search by date (newer than, older than, between and outside of). However, the latter didn’t work properly when I tested it.

RegAlyzer_search_resultsMore important is RegAlyzer’s search result window. With regedit’s find function you can only jump from hit to hit. This is quite cumbersome. Usually, you have to hit F3 numerous times until you found the right Registry key. By contrast, RegAlyzer displays all matches in a result tab. This allows you to skim over all search results easily. A double click opens the corresponding key in RegAlyzer’s Registry editor. Selected search results can be exported as reg file. RegAlyzer also allows you to replace strings in the Registry database. This is certainly a dangerous function and one should be very careful with it.

RegAlyzer What I also like about RegAlyzer is its undo and redo log. Both logs are in reg format which enables you to correct mistakes whenever you messed up your system. Editing the Registry is always risky even if you are a Windows geek. So don’t rely only on the logs and always backup the Registry database before you make changes to it.

Other RegAlyzer features (from the publisher’s site)

  • Hierarchical bookmark support
  • Jump to key by command line parameter
  • Jump to key by typing/copying it into dialog (instead of browsing)
  • DWord editing with parallel hex/decimal/binary display
  • Support of QWord (64 bit integer)
  • Display of .reg file contents without importing it
  • Support of version 5 files (Unicode) even with Windows 95/NT
  • Low-level display of security settings with option to export it

The only feature I am missing is a global delete function that allows me to remove all Registry entries that match a certain search pattern. This is even more dangerous, but it would save me a lot of time whenever I want to get rid of all entries created by a certain application. What is your favorite Registry editor?

RegAlyzer

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8 Comments- Leave a Reply

  1. Ronin Vladiamhe says:

    That global delete function would be a great feature. I have RegAlyzer on my flash drive tool kit, and the global delete would make its use a whole lot easier. Not having this feature is akin to using regedit.

  2. Michael Pietroforte Michael says:

    Ronin, you’re right. I should have mentioned that even deleting a bunch of keys is faster with RegAlyzer because you see all the keys at stake in the result windows. So you can jump to each key and delete it. Actually, I use RegAlyzer often for this purpose.

  3. RS says:

    Because I really don’t know much more than the average informed user, I don’t mess around with my registry. That said, I do use several tools, such as RunAlyzer, that inevitably lead me to look in the registry. I don’t know if its normal or not, but I enjoy looking around, and when I don’t know what something is, I’ll get on the web and search for it. I’m one of those people that worries about something being on my computer that isn’t supposed to be. There are times that I’d like to know when a file was created in the registry, but I have no idea how to tell. Would RegAlyzer be able to tell me the creation date? Modification date?

  4. Ronin Vladiamhe says:

    Yes Michael, having the ability to delete multiple keys at one time would be great. Though the user can get a result list, with all the keys with a specific search term, RegAlyzer does not give the user to option of deleting multiple keys at one time. Like Regedit, keys must still be deleted one at a time.

  5. Michael Pietroforte Michael says:

    RS, it seems to me that the date feature of RegAlyzer doesn’t work properly. But I didn’t really try too hard. If you want to know what Registry keys an application changes you can use Process Monitor.

  6. RS says:

    Thanks for your reply. I’ve already downloaded ProcMon.

  7. luzzd says:

    1st:
    I have banned RegAlyzer, bcause of missing Multi Key delete. Which advantage has the Select Option, when i didnt use them to delete a bunch of keys, containing the keyword in values?
    Pls let Me choose, how dangerous this may be.
    Over the Selcector box there are security enough….
    2nd:
    if Multiple Deleter/Renamer added to program: inherit the Option that containing key or some levels higher Keys allowed to delete. That would be save time
    Be well
    luzzD

  8. Augy says:

    Yes, and even more desirable is for one thing: a global edit to replace all instances of the particular change one wants to make! I used to have such a program back on my Xp machine; that piece of software was/is amazing, it could/can do all sorts of fast great things but I can’t get the data yet at least off that machine? Last time I looked I could find it or something similar and now I’ve just begun my hunt having your site as my first stop, so I guess I’ll see. (Another thing by the way, so far I see no difference with the alleged 64 bit registry, even with the command line version which again alleges to both manipulate and print an export out in 64 bits?)
    Also, ways to find stuff within binary & when hex is imported etc. even though I can poorly read hex like I read music, Japanese, and Spanish, i.e. I can decipher them with tedious effort. Or how about stuff like that one can only do via the command like editor such as introduce a new expandable string on the top of the key and likewise a type “None”.
    More easily or thoroughly propagate downward permissions like in the Control/Class & Enum sections; where this must be done by hand, otherwise one can’t get a full exported printout!
    You know what would really be awesome would be to be able to edit a copy of the files in the config folder or similarly .hiv file copies offline so to speak i.e. totally independent of the currently (yes I know one can do so with a .reg file but as implied above one need to match up the hex code etc. with great difficulty) such that one can temporarily or eventually permanently change ones identity or/and change for example globally the name of the root folder and stuff like that which occur countless times and the security and so on are so interdependent on all this stuff so that one do stuff like replace an entire hive with either the same or differ name etc.

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