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saving settings(registry) of installed apps


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#1
chessonly

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hi
since i am continously reinstalling windows(XP) i want to know a way backing up my settings. more specifically to backup registry and other settings of my installed apps, so that there is no need of installing them after a format.
note that i only format the c driveand leave the e drive as it is.
obviously i do hav a backup of all the folders and files, so i just need the registry

as per my knowledge this is the key required to backup things:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\

but what doesthis key do:
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-21-2052111302-507921405-1060284298-500\Software\

r there any other keys or any other thing backup. Any advice would be great! :tazz:

Another thing how abt importing the whole registry(before the format) ,will that be a good idea??

Thanks

btw nlite is the reason for reinstalling windows

Edited by chessonly, 05 June 2005 - 11:41 AM.

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#2
greyknight17

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If I get what you want to do here, why don't you just use a program like Acronic True Image to mirror/copy the whole hard drive? It's definitely worth the investment if you do a lot of reinstallations.

What I suggest you do now is to format and install all the applications you want. Then use this program to create a image of the hard drive. Save that image to another hard drive or DVD if you want. Next time you want to reinstall, just pop in this dvd or use the other hard drive to restore it.

That should be the best solution.
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#3
chessonly

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thx for the suggestion grey ,but i already use xxcopy to make a backup of the my E drive.
i'll try to be more clear abt my problem:

c: > strictly windows only
d: >cd
e: > documents, program files etc.

when reinstalling windows i only need to format c: drive.
after a reinstall the registry is new so most apps won't work(they hav no registry entries)
to make my apps work i hav reinstall them again(so that they hav registry entries)
so my question is:
which registry keys do i need to import (before reinstalling windows)
to make my apps work immediately after a fresh windows install.
htc
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#4
greyknight17

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I don't know a lot of users who do it this way. I'm almost positive I know what you are trying to do here. With the program I mentioned earlier, it will copy everything for you. So for example, you only need the c: drive. Then just create an image of the whole c: drive. That way it will save all those programs and the registry settings in one big file which you can restore later. But since this is your first time, I suggest formatting and installing those programs again so that you start at a clean state. This, as far as I can think of, would probably be the best way to do this.

If you still want to do is using the registry, I have to look it up more. I know Windows 98 had like 2 files which needed to be backed up for this. I don't like doing this using the registry because you may run into problems like this. With the TrueImage program, you just restore the image and you will have Windows and all those programs installed right back into the c: drive.
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#5
chessonly

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Sorry for my late response(isp probs)
Trueimage works perfectly, but the nature of of the program nlite is such that i hav to exclude other windows settings.
about nlite: windows stripping program, i.e used to strip the windows cd of 'features' that i don't use.
i have narrowed down the registry keys to

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE
HKEY_USERS\S-1-5-21-a very big number-500

the above keys r certainly very important but i am not sure abt the subkeys of these keys and the other subkeys in HKEY_USERS.
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#6
greyknight17

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Hi, that's ok. ;)

I actually never tried out nlite before. Heard of it and someone asked me to use this once before.

Just one question though. If you use the nlite program and then use TrueImage, would that fit perfectly for what you want? If not, and you still want to do the manual registry export, then we'll give that a shot.

OK, I don't know about that second entry, but the first one should be the programs you installed. If you are installing the exact same thing every time, I suggest just exporting the whole registry. Then import the whole thing when you do the format and reinstall. You probably know this already, but I'll mention it just in case :tazz: Go into the Registry->File->Export and export/save the registry somewhere. Burn that to a CD and store it in a safe place.

I suggest saving the whole registry because I'm pretty sure there are more than just those two places that you need to have backed up. There maybe other settings stored elsewhere in the registry and it may take a lot of work to figure out where everything is.

I hope that's what you wanted. If not, feel free to give me more details. I'll try my best to continue helping you on this or maybe others will join in that know more about this.
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#7
chessonly

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I suggest saving the whole registry because I'm pretty sure there are more than just those two places that you need to have backed up.


oh don't worry abt this. hklm and hku r they only 2 imp keys. the rest r shortcuts to subkeys within them.

well since all the software i use is the same i think i'll just copy the whole registry and then unregister all the files that nlite removes. that's not a perfect solution but i hope it works.

thanks for all your help grey.

btw. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE has subkeys that r not relevant to programs that i installed, but its just too vast to be taken in detail.
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#8
chessonly

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bad news, i just imported HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE in a fresh nlited xp. all my apps started working as before, but the system as such got pretty messed up.

nlite is program which leads to extreme changes . my nlited windows cd =132mb. thus importing specific keys is my only option :tazz:
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#9
greyknight17

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Hi, ok I guess the last thing I can suggest is posting for help in their support forums. They might know a better way than we do.
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#10
chessonly

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link broken there.
i hav posted in nlite forums as well - there also ppl seem clueless.
i guess i'll hav to figure out myself :tazz:
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#11
greyknight17

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Sorry about that. I could have sworn I copied that correctly.

OK, got it. Just tested it out again with this post here now. Had to edit it now :tazz:

Seems like they don't allow direct linking. So go here instead and scroll down to the nLite forum. Click on it and register. Post your question there.
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