Dave-H

Puzzling Registry Size Issue

145 posts in this topic

Thanks dencorso, that's really interesting, and sorry that I've only just seen it!

:thumbup

I'm particularly interested in the bit about ".......the SYSTEM hive and the Windows kernel files must fit below 16 MB when Windows starts."

That or something similar could well be the case in Windows 98 as well, and could well explain my problem!

:yes:

If this is a fundamental limitation on registry size in Win98, I'm very surprised that it doesn't seem to be more generally known about..............

:)

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Thanks everyone.

I'd be interested to see the translated pages too please eidenk.

[EDIT] Oh, you've posted tham! :thumbup

BTW, I eventually opened your .7z file with WinRAR.

As you say, it's strange that WinZip won't cope with it, but I have found a few other compreesed archive formats which only open with WinZip and not WinRAR, and vice versa......

Funny, I can't open it with 7zip ?

(http://rapidshare.com/files/57327311/RegUtils.7z)

I think something is wrong witj the downloaded file -- try twice both files won't open.

Charlie

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Can't open any of your files on rapidshare.com with 7-Zip (*.7z) ?

Charlie

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From 7 Zip--

"

Why can't 7-Zip open some ZIP archives?

In 99% of these cases it means that the archive contains incorrect headers. ZIP archives contain two copies of headers. 7-Zip reads both copies and won't open archives with incorrect data in the headers. Other ZIP programs can open some archives with incorrect headers, since these programs usually read only one copy of the headers, or they just ignore errors.

If you have such archive, please don't call the 7-Zip developers about it. Instead try to find the program that was used to create the archive and inform the developers of that program that their software is not ZIP-compatible.

There is now also an extension to the ZIP format for strong encryption (AES) support. The next version of 7-Zip will support it. You can try the AES feature in the latest beta version of 7-Zip."

But can't find what "AES" is , and where access to it is in the latest beta version ?

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[...]

I'm particularly interested in the bit about ".......the SYSTEM hive and the Windows kernel files must fit below 16 MB when Windows starts."

That or something similar could well be the case in Windows 98 as well, and could well explain my problem! :yes:

If this is a fundamental limitation on registry size in Win98, I'm very surprised that it doesn't seem to be more generally known about.............. :)

Yea, those were my thoghts also. I've searched for scrubber and found it here. While there is no version for Win 9x/ME, Avid offers two different versions, one for 2k and the other for XP. The accompanying documentation (entitled "Scrubber Utility for Avid Unity Products", let's call it SUAUP) provides some more tidbits of information, so now I think I do see a thread. Of course, by kernel they must be referring to all fundamental system components, not just krnl386.exe + kernel32.dll. And it makes sense that those files got bigger and bigger with every new version of windows.

That said, the limits for system.dat seem to be:

12.5MB for Win 9x/ME (your finding)

11 MB for Win 2k (plain vanilla) (from SUAUP for 2k)

10.3 MB for Win 2k Server (from KB277222)

8MB for win XP (from SUAUP for XP)

SUAUP for 2k states, clearly, "If this file reaches approximately 11 MB in size under Windows 2000, the system may fail to boot and need to be rebuilt", which parallels quite nicely your own statement of the issue, on the first post.

It remains to be seen whether any of the scrubbers can be made to work with Win 9x/ME. And investigate every registry cleaner and/or compactor to be able to deal with this issue as best as we can.

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Can't open any of your files on rapidshare.com with 7-Zip (*.7z) ?

Charlie

I have downloaded with IE both those two archives I had uploaded and they open and extract fine with both 7-Zip and Izarc.

Next time please avoid making three posts in a row for the same thing and append new material instead by editing your first post as I have just done with this one.

Edited by eidenk
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It remains to be seen whether any of the scrubbers can be made to work with Win 9x/ME. And investigate every registry cleaner and/or compactor to be able to deal with this issue as best as we can.

Well I have the best registry cleaners I think as well as the best compactor I also think which is the one I posted above but those tools aren't enough to squeeze out all the junk that might be in the registry.

As a matter of fact I removed more than 6MB from my registry by hand since I last posted in this thread (not counting the just above post).

Roughly 2MB from the Software keys, 2MB from the MSI installer key and 2MB very fastidiously from the CLSID, Typelib and Interface keys with the help of COMView.

Of course this has been done after removing all I could with Regseeker, Wise Registry Cleaner and Microsoft's Windows Installer Cleanup.

Another key that can become huge is the UserAssist key. It's a key that logs by default in a crypted form everything you launch from the shell.

Its subkeys which contain the logs can be deleted without problems. It can also be prevented from logging launches and thus from using registry real estate by setting it's NoLog Value to 1 under the Settings subkey.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\UserAssist

Edited by eidenk
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Hi, eidenk! :hello:

As always, you bring us good news and wonderful tools! :thumbup

I shall try the method you described shortly. Of the UserAssist issue I was aware.

There is lots of info in a page by Helamonster and his handy, dependable and quite funny named little utility, UserAss, that does a pretty good job at eliminating UserAssist from the registry once and forevermore. :w00t: The downside is that UserAssist exists in USER.DAT, so that eliminating it srinks the registry but does not shrink SYSTEM.DAT, which, in my system, is already at 8.2 MB, after running Registry Concentrator (thanks a lot for it, BTW). So my next priority is to shrink it asap.

Edited by dencorso
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Glad Registry Concentrator is usefull for you.

I am on Win ME and the cumulated size of my system.dat and classes.dat (which are the equivalent of 98SE system.dat) is nearly 10MB after all that cleaning so I recon your sytem.dat is pretty clean if you have DX9 and NET 2.0 installed.

I thought I'd mention a method for cleaning the COM keys (CLSID, Typelib and Interface) at 100%.

It actually consist of deleting them and then merging old clean ones to the registry.

Of course for doing that you need to have exported those keys with regedit after installing Windows and updates (IE, DX, DotNet, MDAC, JET, etc...) and most common apps such as Acrobat Reader for example.

If you don't have that and don't mind reinstalling updates and apps, there is still a way to do it if you have kept your system.1st file.

As you probably know, when windows is installed it creates a system.1st and a user.1st files. Those are actually backups of the initial registry.

If you stilll have those files you can open them with another marvellous free tool called RegExport and export any key in Regedit 4 format. (Mitec's Windows Registry Recovery app claims to be able to do the same but it does not work correctly here).

When I cleaned the COM keys with COMView I actually deleted a bit too much stuff and some functions of IE turned out to be broken which I did not manage to fix by reregistering IE components with regsvr32 so I did resort to the above method of exporting the COM keys from a post IE 5.5 install dat file I had kept.

Merging them to the registry increased it's size by about 100kb or so which obviously is what I deleted by mistake with COMview and could not fix with regsvr32. After doing that everything was working fine again.

I think I have told all my secrets now. B)

Edited by eidenk
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Can't open any of your files on rapidshare.com with 7-Zip (*.7z) ?

Charlie

I have downloaded with IE both those two archives I had uploaded and they open and extract fine with both 7-Zip and Izarc.

Next time please avoid making three posts in a row for the same thing and append new material instead by editing your first post as I have just done with this one.

Tried all versions of 7-zip and latest version of winrar, also one other program #7z, but can not open your files (Regutils or Regdoc ) . Can open any other .7z files that I down load, so it seems to be your files when I down load them. Any other format you could put them in?

Sorry about not editing my post, your right I need to do that next time. I had not done that before, again I'm sorry. Thanks for your help - Charlie

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Mmmh, I downloaded them again an guess what ? I had extreme difficulties to extract regdoc this time (other was fine).

Very weird shall we say.

Anyway, I made a new archive that contains them both, a zip this time. It's here :

http://rapidshare.com/files/69264407/RegAll.zip.html

That's its MD5 checksum : 555d41086ae7225ad48ea5cf41a3ee24. So you can check for eventual corruption of the archive by Rapidshare should you experience problems with this one as well.

Edited by eidenk
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Mmmh, I downloaded them again an guess what ? I had extreme difficulties to extract regdoc this time (other was fine).

Very weird shall we say.

Anyway, I made a new archive that contains them both, a zip this time. It's here :

Thanks, that opened with 7-zip - who knows with Rapidshare?

This should help me in reducing the registry size.

Charlie

Question - when I run regcon, after it runs system and user.dat, a second window pops up - "C:Windows\system.dat", with japanese lettering and a "OK" at bottom. When I click "OK" it halts Regcon? The txt files that came with it are in japanese or I'm missing a Font to read it. What next?

Edited by charly
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Hi Charlie,

You are not missing any font, it's just that I haven't translated everything in this executable. (I'll try to finish it someday but don't expect anything anytime soon).

It halts probably because of what it calls "ghost" keys. By using the right options you can force it to ignore that.

Alternatively you can run registrip on both dat files and look if it find problems in the report tab. You need to click on the small text icon for the report to display. At the bottom of the report will be listed the registry keys found to have "problems". It will be keys containing non "standard" ASCII characters. If you delete those keys with regedit, you should then find that regcon will proceed without errors with the default options.

Use at your own risk and let me know if you encounter other problems.

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Hi Charlie,

You are not missing any font, it's just that I haven't translated everything in this executable. (I'll try to finish it someday but don't expect anything anytime soon).

It halts probably because of what it calls "ghost" keys. By using the right options you can force it to ignore that.

Alternatively you can run registrip on both dat files and look if it find problems in the report tab. You need to click on the small text icon for the report to display. At the bottom of the report will be listed the registry keys found to have "problems". It will be keys containing non "standard" ASCII characters. If you delete those keys with regedit, you should then find that regcon will proceed without errors with the default options.

Use at your own risk and let me know if you encounter other problems.

Got it - Option "Force reconstruction in case of ghost keys."

Your the man!

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[...]I am on Win ME and the cumulated size of my system.dat and classes.dat (which are the equivalent of 98SE system.dat) is nearly 10MB after all that cleaning so I recon your sytem.dat is pretty clean if you have DX9 and NET 2.0 installed.[...]

Well, eidenk, it's not so good: I've removed .NET, because it caused the seach bug, at least in my system, and I don't have many applications that use .NET (the few I have I can run on Win XP, in the rare occasions I need them). I think I did a good job at removing .NET, but I wouldn't be surprised if there is still some junk in the registry left by it that has eluded me up to now. :) But I shall shortly attack this problem and, of course, will keep you posted.

Thanks for all the valuable info/tips/pointers-to-applications. You rock! :thumbup

Now let me point you to a program I have found very useful: Registry Viewer 4.2, by General Paul Lee (a russian programmer). It is a DOS program, able to directly modify (not add) registry settings from DOS!!! The only bug I ever found in it is that it should let you select interactively the registry file you want to open, when called without any parameter in the command line, but that doesn't work. But calling it as "regview <drive>:\<path>\<filename>.dat" always works OK. Hope you too find it useful. :yes:

Edited by dencorso
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