How to extract parts of a backed up WinXp registry and import into the current one?
July 2, 2007 11:55 AM   Subscribe

I have an old and less than ideal backup of my windows registry. The only part that doesn't work is the system part (I manually deleted some hardware profile entries and buggered the thing). Is there a way to grab ONLY the hardware profile entries from a registry backup and then insert them into the broken one? Regedit doesn't seem to allow me to open, edit and copy from a backup registry.

Windows has been giving me problems with hardware profiles (unable to erase or rename them). So, feeling adventurous, I deleted all instance of the new hardware profiles from the registry, leaving all but the one that I liked. Naturally I bungled the affair and now can't boot.

Using recovery console I swapped the broken system registry file with the repair one (leaving the sam, security, software and others intact). Now the system boots, but obviously most of my hardware changes are out of date. It seems like it would be a trivial fix to simply copy the hardware profile entries that correspond to the ones I deleted from my backed up registry and paste them into the current one. I don't want to restore that backup because it's still a few months old and I added some new drivers and hardware.

posted by Smegoid to Computers & Internet (2 answers total)
You have a (broken) backup of your registry and want to insert pieces of it back into your current registry?
I have only done single sections, not a mass update like this, but I think you can do it.
Take the .reg file you want pieces of and edit it. I assume you need to leave the first line (Windows Registry Editor...), then delete the sections you don't want. The sections you do want to include should have the header [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE...] and whatever lines you wish to change.
Double-click on the .reg file. It will ask if you if you want to add the information- click Yes.

(This works for WIN2000- don't know about yours)
posted by MtDewd at 1:10 PM on July 2, 2007

MtDewd's answer would work, I think. There are also a bunch of shareware reg tools (like one called "Resplendent Registrar", as I recall) that'll let you do more advanced operations on your registry. One of them might have a feature that allows you to do this sort of thing, if that more straightforward approach doesn't work.
posted by LairBob at 2:04 PM on July 2, 2007

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