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Windows Registry   Registry Run Key  
Using The Registry Is At Your Own Risk.

The Windows Registry Explained:
To be handled with serious care the Windows Registry is a hierarchical system of storage, (database) that holds configurations and settings information for your operating system. Hardware, software, applications and user preference settings are all saved and stored by the Windows Registry.
From installing Anti Virus to control panel usage, data is added, modified or removed by the Windows Registry. The main innovation for the use of the registry was to keep all this information in one place helping your system memory RAM from unnecessary use.

The bottom line is that your computer will go through unrelenting changes for the better hopefully. Your operating system needs to keep an account of these changes and thats where the windows registry comes in. But remember of course Spyware and Viruses can manipulate and damage the registry.
Windows Registry Information for advanced users.

The Registry Keys and Values:
There are two fundamental parts to the registry and they are Keys and Values. Keys are a type of folder system, where you have a specific key with sub keys(folders) and so on. Values are on each Key and each Key can have zero or more values, with each value being a specific piece of data.

Accessing Windows Registry:
To open regedit.exe, follow this procedure:

1. Open the Start Menu.
2. Choose "Run".
3. Enter "regedit" and press Enter.

There you will see the KEY folders with names beginning with HKEY ( Handle to Registry Key ). These are the five logical sections called Hives. Each one dealing with specifics of your operating system. Without experience DO NOT play around in the registry.

Older operating systems 95/98 also used the below (Hive) Key.

HKEY_DYN_DATA

Its differs from other Registry handle keys its not written to the hard disk. The Plug and Play information is gathered and configured on startup and its stored in system memory RAM.
Windows 95 Registry Information for advanced users.

The Hives Explained:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT
This is for information related to applications on your system and their file associations.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER

The information here is related to the current user of the operating system.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

Information stored here relates to the machines; hardware, software, drivers, services or windows settings.

HKEY_USERS
Information related to all users configured to use the machine. The generic settings are available to all users that log on to the computer. This key has subkeys for each user that logs in to the computer (system).

HKEY_CURRENT_CONFIG

Information related to the current user at runtime and will use information from the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE  hive.

Windows Registry Information for advanced users.