Repair registry errors? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Does Onecare repair registry issues? A local PC/software retailer told me it will repair registry issues on my desktop and laptop. I had downloaded a trial version of some kind of software and it supposedly found 750 issues in my registry but wouldn't repair them unless I purchased the software.



    Tuesday, October 14, 2008 1:43 PM


  • Sethsdad,


    No, the installed version of OneCare doesn't contain a registry cleaner, but the online free version called the Windows OneCare Safety Scanner does. However, the entire idea of the need for cleaning your registry is really a fallacy as we've discussed here many times before. Here's a link to such a recent discussion in the General Forum.




    To summarize, most of the programs which claim to perform registry cleaning are just designed to take your money or worse, may actually install malware on your PC. Only a handful are actually reputable and really attempt to remove something that doesn't belong, though even these are occasionally known to make the situation worse if the reqistry is actually 'damaged'. The best they can do is remove some left over registry entries that weren't properly removed when a program was uninstalled or might have been left by a partial malware removal.


    In short, unless you have some significant issues which you are certain aren't actually caused by malware, you can generally only make things worse using a registry cleaner. Microsoft created their version simply because so many people believed that they needed a registry cleaner and were instead getting themselves infected with malware and/or damaging the registry, so now you have a safe place to go for free.


    Windows Live OneCare safety scanner Free online tool for PC health and safety





    < EDIT > I did forget to mention above that the fully installed version of OneCare does contain a "Startup Scanner', which detects unused or rarely used startup programs. These are mostly the small icons you see in the Windows Taskbar on the lower right of your screen by the clock. Since these all use both memory and cause processor overhead, removing them if they're rarely used can help improve operation of the PC.


    This is really the only valuable 'registry cleaning' you can generally do, since most of the registry will never be accessed unless something actually tries to use it. Removing or disabling these startups can actually affect both operating system startup time and the overall operation of the PC due to reduced overhead.



    Tuesday, October 14, 2008 3:16 PM