Unsupported Registry Backup and Restore Methods May Corrupt Registry

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Article ID: 273894
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Summary

Restoring the registry by using a drag-and-drop operation to delete individual registry files from their backup cabinet files (Rb0*.cab) and then replace the active registry files is not a valid or supported method of restoring a registry file.

This method is advocated in third-party paper publications and in articles that are published on the Internet concerning the Registry Checker tool. This method, which may corrupt the active registry, is not supported by Microsoft.

To restore a registry backup without corrupting the active registry, use the Restore feature in the Registry Checker tool:
  1. Use the startup disk to restart your computer, and then click the Minimal boot option.
  2. Type scanreg /restore, and then press ENTER.

More information

Much of the registry is cached in memory at all times. If you replace the live file on the hard disk, the version of the registry that is cached in memory will contain different data than that which is in the file on the hard disk. The next time that the registry writes to the registry file, the registry will write data from the cache that is not synchronized with the registry file on the hard disk, which damages the data structures of the registry file.

For additional information about the Registry Checker tool, click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
183887 Description of the Windows Registry Checker Tool (Scanreg.exe)
273889 Changes to the Registry Checker Tool (Scanreg.exe) in Windows Me
For additional information about Registry Checker command-line switches, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
184023 Command-Line Switches for the Registry Checker Tool
For additional information about Registry Checker and startup, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
198864 Registry Is Not Backed Up Automatically at Startup
For additional information about the registry and user profiles, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
250410 Description of the Registry Files in Windows 98/95
For additional information about user profiles, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
161334 Guide to Windows NT 4.0 Profiles and Policies (Part 1 of 6)

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Article ID: 273894 - Last Review: June 19, 2014 - Revision: 2.0
Keywords: 
kbnosurvey kbarchive kbenv kbinfo KB273894

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