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What You Said: Have Registry Cleaners Helped Your Computer… Ever?

2011-03-27_133706

Earlier this week we asked you to share your experiences with Windows registry cleaning applications. You responded with hundreds of replies and now we’re back with a roundup of the key ideas and reader experiences.

Windows registry cleaning applications are a bit of a gray area when it comes to computing maintenance. Many people swear by them, many more deride them, and quite a few less knowledgeable users get duped by malware posing as a must-have registry cleaner. We asked you to weigh in with your experiences and you all quickly formed into two distinct camps.

No Way, Not on My Computer!

2011-04-01_120722

Many readers had very strong opinions about the dubious and outright ill effects of using a registry cleaner. Reader Tynen writes:

I used to use registry cleaners. But after breaking my computer so many times i stopped. I personally believe they’re completely useless. I’d rather re-build my computer.

Allen follows up with:

I haven’t used one in years; and that is my commentary on how useful they are.

Parahumanoid recommends against them but suggests a way you can clean up after lazy applications:

Tried them. Pointless and dangerous. The best you can do is use a registry monitor to log your installation process, so that you can clean up after uninstall by checking the keys left behind.

The ovewhelming sentiment across the “Not on my computer!” responses was that they do more harm than good, they’re too powerful for inexperienced users to be running around with, and that boosts in performance were either minimal or outright imagined.

I Use Them, Cautiously.

caution1

Other readers saw the value in using registry cleaners but only if you were very cautious in using them. Ashutosh writes:

I do occasionally use the registry cleaner available in CCleaner. I have noticed that it’s not as aggressive as some of the other registry cleaners out there, and so the chances of something important getting deleted is really less (there’s still a backup option, in case something happens).

I have, of course, never seen any speed improvements. It’s just the cleaning of unwanted clutter that makes me a little happy every time I run it.

We had to chuckle a little at his last sentence, sometimes computer maintenance is just to satisfy the OCD geek in all of us.

Dave cautions us to be even more careful:

Unless you understand what your messing with and can fix it, I recommend leaving it alone. I never make a blanket decision on what a given tool offers, only what I recognize. I know some of the newer uninstallers are incorporating removal of items from registry, but still us with caution (and a backup)

Solid advice; the Windows registry is enormously complex and it isn’t very human-readable. If you don’t know what you’re looking at, don’t trust the application that just scanned your registry to know either.

Other readers had moved away from using general registry cleaners and limited their work to applications that focused only on removing registry entries for the programs they were uninstalling. Brian writes:

CCleaner has been fine for cleaning out junk from uninstalled apps. But recently I found even this unnecessary as I now use Revo Uninstaller, which does a good job of removing the old app gunk.

This is a great way to play it safe. Revo lists only the registry keys that are related to the app you are uninstalling and allows you to cherry pick which ones it will remove. It’s very hard to go wrong with this kind of guarded cleaning.

Many of the readers who used them indicated that they saw the most improvement on older machines and those with lots of applications installed (or recently removed). Mike Kluczan writes:

Yes, I’ve used them although you don`t want one too aggressive. I’ve notice improvements from almost nothing to incredible. These were, by the way, all on old to very old computers or computers that were almost topped out (200 – 300 programs installed etc. ). They do make a difference if the computer doesn’t have much reserve but don`t get one too aggressive or it’ll clean up things you don`t want cleaned up.

Reader cmo999 echoed that sentiment:

CCleaner is the way to go. I believe there is an improvement in performance from keeping the registry clean, but my computer is fairly old and someone mentioned earlier that it won’t make a difference on newer computers.

Kevin had similar experiences:

Only when I’m working on older computers I see a big difference in speed but that’s about it.

For more insights on registry cleaning in a variety of settings, hit up the comments on the original post to see when your fellow readers leave their computers alone, when they roll out their tool box, and when it’s time to just upgrade a machine and go for the big performance gains.

Have a question you want to put before the HTG staff and readership? Shoot us an email at tips@howtogeek.com and we’ll do our best to give it the attention it deserves.

Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 04/1/11

Comments (58)

  1. Mike

    Windows 7 SP1 x64 computer

    User registry cleaners and even registry defgraggers.

    Once about 10 years ago I had a problem with one when I used a Beta version.

    Moral of the story

    Registry Cleaners and Defraggers are good
    Beta’s are dangerous

  2. Lonnie

    Deragging your registry from my experience is a no no, I’d do and everytime it would freeze and then I go to reboot and BOOM system failure, have to reinstall the whole OS again, reg cleaners I have had good success with them,

  3. I-dare-you

    To anyone who claims that registry cleaners will improve performance: Please explain exactly HOW removing unused registry entries will improve performance.

  4. Dulwichdik

    Imagine a car park the size of London or New York, divided up into single car lots then imagine the impact of having a few dozen dead cars occupying these spaces? not the end of the world right? now use this analogy to the registry and you’ll see my point! the thing is huge and having a bit of junk will not make any difference in my humble opinion

  5. xeng

    Everytime I use a registry cleaner my Video Player stops playing my video files, my video editing software stops working. It cant convert the video files anymore. Turns out that it deletes some of the codec files that my software needs. Since then I stopped using them. I just use a regular protection for maintainance.

  6. Mohamad

    You know what since 2008, I’ve been trying pretty much every single registry cleaning software out there in order to see how effective they are and after many test performed, here is what I ended up rating these softwares with:

    1- Auslogics BoostSpeed5 (9.6/10). This is one of the ones i personally wasn’t fan off not until tests proved otherwise. After multiple tests on different environment, this all-in one tune up software has proven its effectiveness at getting rid off orphan and obsolete registry keys/problems safely and securely. It’s absolutely easy to use and equipped with up to 20 tweaks and speed up tools to make your system starts and performs like new. Recently, AVG, the security Vendor, bought a partnership with them and designed AVG PC Tune Up 2011 based on the Auslogics BoostSpeed engine!!

    2- Iolo System Mechnic10 (9.5/10). All in one System maintenance that is capable of give life back to your old dusty PC! It’s equipped with up to 30 cleanup utilities that will make your system much faster and safer than you would imagine. After 9 months of using their 12months paid subscription, I’m fully satisfied with my PC Performance.

    3- Magix PC Check and Tuning 2011 (8.5/10). Another phenomenal high quality software offered by MAGIX AG, this time to speed up your PC. It’s another All in one optimization and speed up tools to get rid off all clusters and registry errors in your system. Really Powerful, reliable, safe and effective. Offered as Free and Pro.

    4- Tune Up Utilities 2011 (8.0/10). A German Company with huge reputation in PC Optimizations and Speed Up. Equipped with Up to 10 powerful safe, and easy to use Speed up tools. Their rating went little down since 2010 however still one of the best maintenance softwares out there. Recently Avira, the Security Vendor, bought a partnership with them.

    5- Iobit System Care 3.5 (7.0/10). A new company founded in 2004, specialized at Security and PC Performance issues. Their all in one system care software combines speed and powerfulness at getting rid off registry problems. Equipped with many safe utilities that can speed up your system. After multiple test however, sometimes it seemed to provide a temporary optimization methods as the tested PCs had number of Freezing periods even after System care check up was performed and set to Max. Generally however, it’s a fair PC maintenance solution with descent effectiveness.

    Obviously, I’ve tried another 30 others, these ones however seem to combine power, effectiveness, reliability and efficiency.

  7. Annonymous

    To previous posters like “Lonnie” and “I-dare-you”:

    Reducing registry entries -in theory- will reduce the overall size of the registry. So if the registry is smaller then it should take less time to search through which in turn should make things faster – or so say the “experts”. And to a near negligible degree they are right. But it is almost negligible. I mean, it’s almost the same as telling someone that their gas mileage will improve by .0001% if they throw the ash tray out out of their car. That would be an improvement, but would it really?

    Problem is, the registry really doesn’t grow that much in size when you simply install a program or tweak something that changes or even adds a registry entry. And just using your computer almost never does anything significant to your registry either. So cleaning out or deleting old/unused/needless registry entries really doesn’t do much for performance – usually! And I say “usually” since over time and under significant use these entries can eventually become problems but that would be rare for most users (in those cases it would be a little like several ash trays full of lead). Frankly, it’s usually configuration issues, unclean cache’s and/or other pointless files which don’t always get the heave-ho that often cause performance problems – not the registry.

    My only concern is when things get fragmented or so jumbled-up that it takes too much time to find things. This sounds a lot like hard drive fragmentation and it is! Cause when you think about it, the registry is really just another file which is also prone to getting fragmented. However, moving a file that is in constant use like the registry is usually very difficult if not impossible to deal with and is why the registry is almost never touched when defragging – at lease not without rebooting.

    So it doesn’t really surprise me what most people said. It really is somewhat pointless to clean the registry since most people usually don’t have any real need to. And as I already pointed out, just using a computer doesn’t really do much to the registry either. So usually by the time the registry is in any real need of any internal housekeeping attention – let alone any “cleaning – the entire computer has lived out it’s life or has had it’s OS totally reinstalled.

  8. Julien

    I think cleaning the registry on computer is usefull if the computer is an famillial computer with children using it. Normally i use the program revo uninstaller. So when i uninstall something i select “advanced unstall”. So it delete useless key in registry. I dont use anymore cleaner or defrag in windows7.,

    Nice post btw :)

  9. lala

    Revo is fantastic, but I no longer use it with network related aps that comonly have a two step uninstall process where items are cleaned out / moved after a reboot.

    I killed my tcp/ip stack after removing Bonjour with Revo.

    Other than that, Revo’s great and shows you how lazy the uninstallers really are.

  10. Dan

    Bah humbug, I have had no problem with registry cleaners ever. Revo Uninstaller is great but even it misses quite a lot of registry items. Try running CCleaner after Revo and see what I mean.

  11. Krishna

    Registry cleaners DEFINITELY improve performance in XP machines or Older.
    Here’s how I go about it.
    Revo Uninstaller removes almost all registry entries associated with that application while uninstalling.
    Periodically CCleaner is used to clean the registry.
    Glary Utilities has many options along with registry clean and registry defrag.
    Revo Uninstaller, CCleaner and Glary Utilities are trusted applications and I am using them for years without any problems.
    The above mentioned three are enough.

  12. Anon

    Sure, yes. Registry cleaners do help my computer.
    True Example that I use.

    ATI/AMD Drivers.

    When uninstalling ATI/AMD drivers for my GFX card, I hop into safe mode, run DriverSweeper, reboot back into safe mode, run ccleaner and its reg cleaner tool then I use Reg Clean Expert to clean the residue left over crap, then boot into regular windows, install new ATI/AMD driver, reboot into safe mode and defrag my registry.

    They declutter the registry and helps Windows read the registry much faster with a a declutter registry vs a cluttered up registry.

    I use these reg cleaner for other examples too but that is one above.

    Happy Reg Cleaning!

  13. ga4a

    @I-dare-you
    Exactly like this.. computer browses for the reg key it needs and it takes a little longer ‘scan’ through them to find what exactly it needs. The difference won’t be huge but the interface will be a lot snappier if you clean it regularly vs. registry that has experienced many software installs and removals for years and hasn’t had a single attempt to remove it’s junk.

  14. Jim

    PC Pitstop has been useful for me for years. For a while, it appeared they went out of business but they’re back now. It cleans up a lot of stuff, not just registry, and DOES speed up the PC.

  15. cactusdr

    It pretty much boils down to Revo & CCleaner to uninstall and clean up. A viable alternative to Revo is Ashampoo’s Uninstaller. It works the same way by logging each entry.
    Good point about how lame the default uninstallers are. It’s as though Windows and the software manufacturers think deleting the contents of the Program File and Start Menu are adequate.

  16. M

    XP machines will benefit much more from running Pagedfrg from SysInternals
    Vista and Win7 users can use Defraggler to address hive files in c:\windows\system32\config, as well as the pagefile and hiberfile
    A fragmented hive file will cause much more system sluggishness than any stray keys. Individual “garbage” keys will not really have any effect. Dulwichdik’s analogy is correct,they are just “parked cars”, they aren’t blocking the road.
    Most “improvements” I hear about from registry cleaning are subjective, there is no data other than the user’s impression that things are snappier

  17. Barb

    Perhaps registry cleaners are not too effective for us geeky types, as we usually keep our machines in top condition. But I use Wise programs for registry and disk cleaning for many clients. Their PCs are a little older, and a little “lesser” than mine. They NEVER clean anything, not cookies, history, temp files, etc. I know when it takes over an hour just to empty their recycle bin, that Wise registry cleaner, and disk cleaner will take over an hour (each) to finish. On some folks’ it takes over 2 hours each! I swear by a GOOD cleaner. Not the junky ones that are advertised all over the internet. After using Wise products, the PCs FLY….! For some, they may be worthless, but for folks who use, use, use and never update, or do ANY housekeeping, they are like a magic bullet!

  18. Phil Hill

    I can definitely say from my own personal experience that…”a registery cleaner, can be a helpful tool”. I use and have used RegisteryReviver, for quite some time now, and would give it a thumbs-up. My OS is Windows 7 Ultimate, with 8GB of memory and 1.5TB hard drive. Now, wheather all that in itself, is a contributing factor, I really couldn’t say. What I do though, on a regular basis, (weekly), is to run the anti-virus program on a “quick scan” every week, and a “full scan” every month. Next, I use the registery cleaner program, every week or so. I dump the Trash, get rid of the cookies, and any trace of where I’ve been on the Internet. I have no secrets, but all these little features, options and so-called,
    “time savers”, have a habit of stealing speed and memory from the computer. Like any good piece of equipment, one just has to perform preventive maintenance, for a (somewhat), trouble-free computing
    experience.

  19. Kandi

    I’ve used all the free registry cleaners and they were totally useless. After purchasing System Mechanic Professional and using it for the past six months, our computers are not only running faster but we’ve had absolutely no computer problems. I highly recommend this software.

  20. ladygeek

    I recently upgraded from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate. I have 2 computers at home – one a Dell notebook and a desktop which is running XP Pro. I still like XP Pro better than the rest of them combined.

    I also wrestled with registry cleaners. I have used Registry Mechanic but I’m not real happy about it and rarely use it. I prefer to make a backup copy of my registry and edit the registry itself. And, just doing it myself seems to correct most of my registry problems. I’ve also tried using CCleaner but I wasn’t that impressed with it either.

  21. Asmodeus1971

    I notice stability improvements when I use my registry cleaners and defrag regularly. I have one included in my security software, I use another freeware program that cleans and defrags everything in one click, but it also runs a backup before doing so, for safety and performance. I have been using these for years now and rarely have any problems with my computer at all. I use them on Vista Home Premium 32 bit and Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit. I run them once or twice a week depending on how many installations, uninstalls, deletions and downloads I do.

  22. Terry

    I have had the best luck just running regedit after uninstalling a program I no longer wist to use.
    I just run regedit BACKUP REGISTRY before I change anything. Then search on the application name and delete any left over entries from the un-installed app.
    I’m sure it doesn’t do 100% clean as all you can remove is based on your search and what it finds, but it does cleanup the bulk of whats left over after an un-install.

    If you accidentally delete the wrong thing, you allways have the back-up…. Did I mention BACKUP :)

  23. nightrome2004

    Have used registry cleaners for years never a problem. Like any program, have to know how to use it. If you own a car and didn’t know how to drive it would you? Use ccleaner and registry seeker almost every time shutting down my pc. Have also used registry cleaners, on computers that people have given me that wouldn’t boot. Booted in safe mode and used registry seeker to clear the infected entries and rebooted back into windows. Most deleted useless entries were around 10,000 entries from the registry.
    Run it all the time, to check whenever even a slight hesitation in the mouse movement. Caught many a entry that shouldn’t be there. Granted there is one setting not to play with it will crash your computer. Then again only use it if you know what you are doing.

  24. nightrome2004

    Just another comment about registry cleaners. I never run updates, nor do I run virus protection, programs I run tell me everything that is happening at the moment. If I do get crazy and decide to experiment with a new program, which I am always doing, my programs double checks to see what setting were changed in my computer. Example tried one the other day, forgot what it was but it turned back on my registry edit program which I have turned off. So used revo uninstall to uninstall the program.
    Loaded a program also the other day, that turned on my third party cookie setting. So uninstalled that one. So the point is you run your computer how you want it to run , not how any other programs wants it too. Granted there is times you have to make a decision , run a program you really want and suffer possible troubles. Or run a program, that you want , but be on the guard because of what you might expect from it.But knowing I can clean unwanted entries from my computer with a registry cleaner, puts my mind to ease some.

  25. Ivan Lapis

    I can’t remember the last time I used one… I don’t even recall it actually helping when I did use one…. Seriously… I’d rather checkup on my startup items than to check my registry….

  26. jimmyl405

    I, like Krishna, have used CC Cleaner, Revo, and Glary Utilities, for years and wouldn’t dream of using anything else. I had to weed out a lot of utilities to start out but these 3 came out on top. Since Revo I have not used any other uninstaller, Windows or otherwise…

  27. cybervd

    I am engineer of computer science, my experience is always positive with registry cleaners. Because with these software, you can remove all needless registry keys. Clean registry => stable OS, but not necessary speedy OS.

  28. Leon Soles

    I used Registry Mechanic on my old Win98 SE Computer. It really did a good job of cleanup and restoring it to it’s proper operation. I tried it for a while after I got XP Pro, and found that it it didn’t make any difference. I never had it to give me any trouble with either computer, though. Now, I do my housekeeping with CCleaner and Spybot’s File Shredder Tool. An occasional de-frag of the hard drive, not the registry, and the XP Pro computer stays in good shape.

  29. carlos less

    I can tink that thear is someting beat than that it is a grate ting to do try it you will like it I like it its fun tell a frend tell some one

  30. nightrome2004

    Just another note about registry cleaners. I see most people don’t believe in them, of course why not hit a button let the computer do the rest. But the registry is like the table of contents to a book, sure everyone knows what a book is? If you open the beginning of a book the table of contents. Outlines the book. Same as with a computer. What the registry says should !!!!! match the operating system. If it doesn’t there is an error. Say you download a file and like pdf file, and you don’t have a program to open it. You scan the registry is will say invalid file, which is true , you either have to take that file out of your computer, or know you don’t have a file to open it, so you have to download a file to open it. You could just leave it knowing at some point to take it out or load a program to open it. Just an example , also registry will uninstall programs, also. it will show applications that shouldn’t be there so you can uninstall them. But then again knowing the registry and your application and what it can do. It can prevent lot of wrong entries from getting in your computer. Registry is also a history, you make a typing error it is logged. How do you think hackers know what you are doing? Among others ways. Just a few thoughts. Wouldn’t leave home without a registry cleaner.

  31. Peter Ridgers

    I use Fedora and Centos.

    What’s a registry???

  32. Lyn

    Auslogics has been my fav, but yesterday, I got slammed ,I have a 2 month old DEll XPS Studio 7100 Quad 640.windows 7 8Gb .I was working on my website and left it for a minute,and have note been able to go back on it,simply will not open the thing and this is a first, anyone with any ideas ?? Dell tell me that I haver no damn coverage as they feel it is software, Help if you can\
    Thanks
    Lyn

  33. Drecked

    I use Win tools Professional and it disposes of useless files & register keys and it
    it does an excellent job ! A bit like cleaning out the spare room after a year of storing stuff in there!

  34. mike in Illinois

    I regularly use about 4 registry cleaners. I find that all of them find different amounts of things they think need to have removed. I have never had a problem with any of the programs or had any damage to my system. If it’s been awhile since I ran them I usually see that the first one I run finds 150 to 300 or so things that should be removed. And after they are removed I can see an improvment in performance. Not a great improvement but improved none the less.

  35. Mr Pod

    Theres a lotta peeps with a lotta time on their hands – FOUR registry cleaners!!!
    , I hope your bedrooms are as tidy as your registries.

  36. bobo-ana

    well, compact the reg would be better

  37. Anand Tulpule

    Finally I have settled down on jv16 PowerTools 2011. This all-in-one tool is excellant. I have personally purchased and tried several other tools but failed as inveriably my system use to crash.(Not necessarily the program mistakes, it could be mine as well.) I am using jv16 for the past one year withot a crash. I am a platinum VIP member of this program.

  38. Al

    useless

  39. none

    Avoid them simply because are dangerous and CAN’T speed up or fix anything if you really understand how registry works and keys are loaded in ram…

  40. cybervd

    CCleaner, Glary Utilities and Auslogics Disk Defrag. These is all what you need to keep your computer healty. And check windows updates for your PC. It is not dangerous if you understand what are you doing.

  41. Mo

    Registry cleaner = crap

  42. Kagnew

    Lyn – Not the best place for a problem but try a Ftp program like Wsftp to get in and edit.

  43. Don

    I like to clean up unused programs on occasion and often will not use the “uninstall” to do so. I just delete the program from “program files”. Then I run a registry cleaner that finds all of the junk left over, and gets rid of it.

    This is sometimes necessary when a program you have installed does not show up in the “uninstall” list in control panel “add and remove programs”. Don’t ask me why they aren’t there..I don’t know, but some are.

    I also use registry cleaner after doing Microsoft Upgrades. I find that some upgrades will leave unused registry entries.

  44. Jonno

    JV 16 cleaner from Macecraft works wonders, is great followed by CCleaner and possibly Glary utilities.
    Like most utilities, you need to know how to use them. JV16 appears very good in psyching out problems ad allowed my system to work normally a few tiems after some dastardly program screwed with the OS I ws using.
    General purpose Ccleaner, is great and freeware as you all know. JV brings on heavier but more inteligent cleaning. But costs. I am thinkling of BUYING ths ione as its been about for years and has helped. Their programmers know what theyre doing…..Wish I did…but not wishing to get too involved too deeply, havent got the time. So these utils are not a lazy mans way, theyre the way to whne al lnormal thing fail….Speed, yeah like the CPU that promised twice the speeds, they never seems to make much difference till we got to 100 times faster,,,,buy a solid state drive setup as raid. Mind your head….thats speed.

  45. Helmut

    My post requires a typo error correction:

    The Microsoft tools to run are:

    chkdsk c: /f

    and

    sfc /scannow [not scc /scannow]
    This is the system file checker which will check for and repair corrupt system files.

  46. none

    99% of people who uses registry cleaners think it’s good to remove unused keys and this improves stability and responsiveness. This is totally false because abandoned keys do never affect loading speed, RAM usage or whatever. But ignorant users who really don’t know how registry work will continue using them, even with random problems later… So sad…

  47. IT Pro

    Please don’t use registries cleaners as they are a waste of time… I work in a computer store and one in ten OS / registry corruptions are caused by one of these so called “Registry cleaners” – they should be called “Registry corrupters”

  48. Roddy

    I use ccleaner. Just create a folder somewhere(I named mine ccregbackups) and run it.
    Backup the reg entries to that folder. Any problems, restore reg entries from that folder.

  49. Tom

    Right now I’m using Linux but back when I used Windows I would use Ccleaner for cleaning my registry. I think registry cleaners are very helpful if you know what your doing. It helped me get rid of some old registry keys that were left over from one of my antiviruses that I stopped using. It was easier then manually finding them myself.

  50. Colliedog

    It is much better if some group out there is formed to do tests on which registry cleaners is best for which e.g Windows 7, XP, XP PRO. ME. MAC. VISTA etc etc. But l do know that Uniblue is a disaster for XP PRO SERVICE PACK 2. By experience CCleaner is great for XP PRO SERVICE PACKS 1, 2 or 3. I’m about to download CCleaner to WINDOWS 7 so I’ll see if it does the job.

  51. Chad

    I agree and disagree with Krishna. WinDoctor from Norton Utilities (1997) and CCleaner are the only two registry utilities I could count on 100% without error. Today I use CCleaner. I used Glary Utilities’ registry cleaner in Windows 7 Professional x64, and afterwards, my Synaptics touchpad driver software doesn’t work, my PGP Desktop software installation had to be repaired, Windows 7 saved searches no longer know what program to use to operate them, etc. I’m sure that’s not all. While there is a backup feature, one SHOULDN’T have to use them, or it defeats the purpose. That’s why CCleaner is reliable. The file cleaning parts of CCleaner are probably the most effective. Registry cleaners are necessary for two reasons: 1. Programmers make mistakes, and most importantly: #2. People are not thorough in their programming. EVERYTHING that gets installed by an installer should be uninstalled by the installer. It is a fact that the more software installed in Windows, the more vulnerable and more unstable it becomes.

  52. Chad

    There have been several times where I’ve gone to a computer that was malfunctioning to where the user couldn’t use it, and after running CCleaner (after running chkdsk), it has restored the computer to a usable state.

  53. Waynebob

    i have used CCleaner for years with no problem but have no idea if it has sped up things. However I just finished running Windows Live OneCare safety scanner and part of it’s routine was a registry cleaner?
    It’s a mystery to me. :-)

  54. Derek

    I agree with everyone on the fact that registry cleaners can cause problems, and yes for the most part there is no “true performance boost”; however, have you ever wondered why it can takes so long for windows search or indexing service to complete a search or even when a security app takes longer and longer to scan? It is all those dud key values in the registry; I use ccleaner once a week to clean my registry and have done so for over 3yrs and no problems. Just more efficiant security scans and windows searches.

  55. Loal Nerd

    I have never had much faith in registry cleaners, I run them ‘just because’.
    Today though, I was dealing with an xp machine that kept hanging on shutdown. After a whole day of soul crushing disable this and see if it helps kind of troubleshooting, i ran ccleaner to clear out the registry. 25 boot cycles and still no issue.

    feeling kinda dumb now. that’s why I had to find this article and post.

  56. iNB

    Seriously, I don’t believe a free software like ccleaner can work well on all kinds of Windows registry, especially on Win7 X64. I used to use AthTek RegsitryCleaner and 360 safeguard on my laptop and they work well. The truth is, a paid software like AthTek RegistryCleaner can do better work than those free software. Thousands of registry errors will be removed every time cleaning, and I can have the free technical support from their support center.

  57. Dalmacius

    Yup, I used to use them tried most of them. The last time I used CCleaner, it cleaned my
    wallet. I couldn’t open my system…had to have the box checked. Ouch!
    But I guess one has to use something to remove registry garbage. Eventually, I find one
    that will work well.

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