Just like the older Windows versions, the registry is an essential component of the Windows Vista operating system. If the registry gets damaged due to an accumulation of junk information such as obsolete, incorrect, or malicious registry keys, it can cause severe damage to your Vista computer and even make it inaccessible. To save yourself from all this trouble, the best safeguard that you can employ is to make regular backups of the registry. Because there is no specific tool in Windows Vista that enables automatic registry backups, you will have to make manual backups of the registry. Let’s now go through the various options that you can use to backup the Windows Vista registry.
The Registry Editor tool is primarily used to perform manual edits to the Windows registry. The tool also provides options that you can use to backup either a small portion or the entire registry tree. To back up the Windows Vista registry using Registry Editor, perform the following steps:
- Open the Start menu, select Run, type regedit, and press Enter.
- Open the File menu, and select Export.
- Type the name of the backup file in the File name box.
- Next, in the Export range section, to back up the entire registry, select All and to back up a portion of the registry, choose Selected Branch and type the name of the branch you want to back up in the text box.
- Select Save to create the backup file.
System Restore is a useful tool that Windows Vista users can use to rollback their computers to last known working condition, in case their system fails. If your system meets certain required specifications, System Restore is enabled by default on your Vista system. The tool works by taking a snapshot of various system files, configuration information, and the registry. When you restore your system using the utility, all your system settings and the registry are returned to the state when the snapshot was taken.
However, using System Restore you can’t back up a portion of the registry, therefore, when you roll back, all changes made since the time the snapshot was taken are lost.
Windows Complete PC Backup and Restore
This feature is available in the Business, Ultimate, and Enterprise editions of Windows Vista. This is a very useful tool that can help you in recovering your Vista system from tight situations. Using the Complete PC Backup and Restore feature you can make a complete backup of the Vista environment including the operating system, registry, installed applications, user configuration, and data files. Therefore, you can use this tool also to maintain a backup of the registry of your Vista computer. However, just like System Restore, you can only make a full backup of the registry by using this feature.
Registry cleaners are also convenient tools to create registry backups. Advanced registry cleaners, such as RegServe, are compatible with Windows Vista and enable you to make registry backups without any problems. These advanced tools help you make both selective and full backups of the registry. Using these tools you can perform registry backups and restore with just a few clicks of your mouse. This method of maintaining registry backups is quite popular among users and computer technicians.
Now that you know how to backup the Windows Vista registry, ensure that you perform registry backups at regular intervals. It is also recommended that in addition to saving on your hard drive, that you also save your backups on external sources, such as tape drives, DVDs and CDs, so that you can recover your system even if your hard disk fails.