RegCOPA Registry Editor - Main Window

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This will be mostly self-explanatory to experienced computer maintainers. If this is all new to you, be very cautious that you do not make dangerous changes to your Registry - see the Welcome Page.

On this page

Views

The Root Keys

Keys

Key Values

Context Menus

Importing, Exporting and Editing .REG Files

Views

A more sophisticated systems of Views was introduced with Version 2 of RegCOPA.

A Windows option is available From the Views menu, to display or hide the panes individually, and the Keys and Values panes have small icons at their top right:

maximise

Values pane only. Maximise this pane. It will then occupy the space previously used by the Multi-Display Area, and if the Keys pane is closed or hidden, that area too.

normalise

Values pane only. Normalise - return pane to its usual form from being maximised (above).

hide

Hide this pane. It can be temporarily shown again from the Views menu-arrow Windows menu, or by clicking on the orange label that will appear. Moving the mouse outside the pane leads to its being hidden again.

unhide

Unhide this pane - it will return to its usual permanently-displayed state.

close

Close this pane completely. It can be restored from the Views menu-arrow Windows menu.

The Root Keys

hives

These are the five major 'containers' for the data, divided into functional units. The files containing them are not directly user-accessible, except through a suitable Registry Editor like RegCOPA.

Each contains a hierarchy of keys and sub-keys, which can be opened by either double-clicking or clicking on the little + to the left. Right-clicking displays a context menu.

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT
Contains information about the file system such as file associations (which software should be used to handle with file types).

HKEY_CURRENT_USER
Contains information related to the current logged-in user, mostly copied from other parts of the registry: this is a dynamic area and changes to it will usually be changed again by user actions, or the logging out of the user.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
The basic information about hardware and software on the machine. Values from here may be copied to other parts of the registry for actual use.

HKEY_USERS
Information about the users configured to use the machine, such as names and individual configuration settings for the machine.

HKEY_CURRENT_CONFIG
Information about the current configuration of the computer, which may have been obtained from other parts of the registry, or may be other temporarily held information.

Keys Pane

This shows the hierarchical structure of keys under each root key. This can be extremely complex with many similar keys, so be very careful you are working with the correct key!

The context menu (available with a right mouse-click) gives quick access to various functions:

 

Values Pane

When a key or sub-key is selected in the left-hand pane, the values stored in that key are displayed here. Each key may have any number of values under different names. For instance if you use MailCOPA email client, there is a key called Paths that holds values showing the paths to

The Server (where the data is stored)
The Screen (the file that contains graphic data for the display)
The Root (the root directory for the program files).

Keys can store data in three fields in the registry, plus one stored only by RegCOPA:

Name - Just a name given to this entry

Type - the data format for the information

Data - the actual contents of this information

 

Comment - A text field used for noting, for instance, the meaning or use of this key. (eg "Fred put this here on 1st March just to see what happens" !). This information is not stored in the registry itself, but forms one of RegCOPA's Registry Extensions.

 

The Context menus

A right-click on the Keys or Values panes produces a context menu with options appropriate to that pane.

Keys Context Menu

New Key - Create a new key under this one

Delete - Delete this key

Rename - Rename this key

Add Bookmark - Add a bookmark to the RegCOPA Bookmarks tab

Copy Key Name - Copy the key name to the clipboard

Create Windows Shortcut - When run this shortcut will open RegCOPA at this key. A quick and easy way to access frequently used keys.

Export Key - Export this key as a .REG file, in which form it can be re-imported.

Go To HKEY_CURRENT_USER - Jumps to this key in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, if it exists there.

Go To HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE - Jumps to this key in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, if it exists there.

 

Permissions

Windows NT introduced the concept of permissions for accessing registry keys, the idea being that Windows users (or software running under a username) may be limited in their ability to carry out various changes to the registry.

This is a complex area, and unless you have the necessary knowledge and experience, do not make changes in this area as you may cause irreparable damage to the registry, and/or could lose all ability to access the registry.

 

Key Values Context Menu

Obtained by right-clicking on a key value.

Modify - Modify the contents of this key value

New - Create a new key value. Ensure you use the appropriate data type.

Delete - Delete this key value.

Rename - Rename this key value

Create Windows Quickedit Shortcut - When run, this shortcut will open a small window enabling quick editing of this key value. Very useful if you frequently modify particular values by hand.

 

Importing, Exporting and Editing .REG Files

A key, together with its sub-keys may be exported as a .REG file using the option on the Keys Pane Context Menu (see above). You can save it anywhere you choose on your file system.

A key (either one previously exported or one obtained from elsewhere) may be imported from File menu-arrow Import.

A .REG file may be opened for editing and re-saving from File menu-arrow Open. Click a Hot Spot on the image below for more details:

openregfile

 

RegCOPA Registry Editor

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