How to backup (and restore) the Windows 11 registry?


classic35mm

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Windows 11 23H2 22631.3527
I'm new to Windows 11 (I'm running 23H2, 22631.3447).

I'm thinking about downloading and installing Winaero Tweaker, a third-party customization tool that I think makes changes to the Windows 11 registry.

I would like to backup the Windows 11 registry before I install Winaero Tweaker, in case it makes registry changes that cause problems. How do I backup the registry? And how can I restore that registry in case something goes wrong?

I see a tutorial on how to enable automatic backup of system registry upon restart, but how do I perform a one-time backup of the registry?
 
Windows Build/Version
23H2 22631.3447

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 23H2 22631.3527
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkStation P3
but how do I perform a one-time backup of the registry?



You open regedit.exe and right click "Computer" and choose: Export.
Save this as a .reg file.

Image1.png


To import this, if needed... just double click the previously exported .reg file
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3593 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?
It depends on which hive you intend to backup, the registry isn't one hive, it consists of multiple which are usually part of the %systemroot%\System32\config directory. The easiest option is just do a complete image backup using something like Macrium or install that software in a test virtual machine.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11, Windows 10, Linux Fedora Cinnamon
The easiest option is just do a complete image backup using something like Macrium or install that software in a test virtual machine.

Thank you for the input! How do you recommend I create a test virtual machine? (I consider myself a decent Windows user, but I'm not a power user, and I don't work in IT.)
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 23H2 22631.3527
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkStation P3
You open regedit.exe and right click "Computer" and choose: Export.
Save this as a .reg file.
Thanks for your help. Does this method export all registry hives or just specific ones?
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 23H2 22631.3527
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkStation P3

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    11 Pro 23H2 22631.3593
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkCentre M920S SFF
    CPU
    i7-9700 @ 3.00GHz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo 3132
    Memory
    32GBDDR4 @ 2666MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel HD 630 Graphics onboard
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG E2442
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1 x Samsung 970 EVO PLUS 500GB NVMe SSD, 1 x WD_BLACK SN770
    250GB NVMe SSD (OS and programs), 1 x WD_BLACK SN770
    500GB NVMe SSD (Data)
    Case
    Lenovo SFF
    Keyboard
    Cherry Stream TKL JK-8600US-2 Wired
    Mouse
    LogiTech M510 wireless
    Internet Speed
    Fast (for fixed wireless!)
    Browser
    Chrome, sometimes Firefox
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes Premium & Defender (working together beautifully!)
  • Operating System
    11 Pro 23H2 22631.3593
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ThinkCentre M920S SFF
    CPU
    i5-8400 @ 2.80GHz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo 3132
    Memory
    32GB DDR4 @ 2600MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel HD 630 Graphics onboard
    Sound Card
    Realtek High Definition Audio onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG FULL HD (1920x1080@59Hz)
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    1 x Samsung 970 EVO PLUS NVMe; 1 x Samsung 980 NVMe SSD
    Case
    Lenovo Think Centre SFF
    Mouse
    LogiTech M510 wireless
    Keyboard
    Cherry Stream TKL JK-8600US-2 Wired
    Internet Speed
    Fast (for fixed wireless!)
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes Premium and MS Defender, beautiful together
Thank you for the input! How do you recommend I create a test virtual machine? (I consider myself a decent Windows user, but I'm not a power user, and I don't work in IT.)
If you have windows 11 pro, you can use windows sandbox or hyper v to create a virtual machine.

If you dont have windows 11 pro, you can use the free vmware player or virtualbox to create a windows virtual machine and play around with the software. You would need to download a windows 11 iso from here to create a virtual machine. If you like tweaking and want to mess with stuff further in the future, try it in a virtual machine instead of your own. It is a great way to learn.


Having said that, winaero tweaker is pretty safe and has a backup function built into the program you can use under settings. So you can backup the changes that have not been made and then restore to the point before you changed anything.

You can also create a system restore point before installing the program or changing settings.


Or you can go with @Ghot Suggestion on post 2
 
Last edited:

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell G15 5525
    CPU
    Ryzen 7 6800H
    Memory
    32 GB DDR5 4800mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    RTX 3050 4GB Vram
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    2TB Solidigm™ P41 Plus nvme
    Internet Speed
    800mbps down, 20 up
  • Operating System
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Tablet
    Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo ideapad flex 14API 2 in 1
    CPU
    Ryzen 5 3500u
    Motherboard
    LENOVO LNVNB161216 (FP5)
    Memory
    12GB DDR4
    Graphics card(s)
    AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
    Hard Drives
    256 GB Samsung ssd nvme
Thanks for your help. Does this method export all registry hives or just specific ones?


It exports whatever item you right click.
Computer does the whole registry.
You can also right click on a Hive, and a Key as well.

But like others have mentioned... 3rd party backup software is really the best option.
Anything that backs up Windows, backs up the entire registry as well.


I have this in a text file called: NEW Guy stuff. :-)


Here's some other things that may help...




 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3593 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?
You can backup registry with attached bath script it will create a C:\Registry_Backups folder to backup registry hives but only way to restore these hives are from Recovery Environment using Copy command.
 

Attachments

  • RegBackup.7z
    1 KB · Views: 2

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Pavilion
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 5700G
    Motherboard
    Erica6
    Memory
    Micron Technology DDR4-3200 16GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC671
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung SyncMaster U28E590
    Screen Resolution
    3840 x 2160
    Hard Drives
    SAMSUNG MZVLQ1T0HALB-000H1

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i5-8400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    2x8gb 3200mhz
    Monitor(s) Displays
    benq gw2480
    PSU
    bequiet pure power 11 400CM
    Cooling
    cryorig m9i
  • Operating System
    win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    pentium g5400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    1x8gb 2400
    PSU
    xfx pro 450
regbak4.jpg

regbak5.jpg
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i5-8400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    2x8gb 3200mhz
    Monitor(s) Displays
    benq gw2480
    PSU
    bequiet pure power 11 400CM
    Cooling
    cryorig m9i
  • Operating System
    win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    pentium g5400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    1x8gb 2400
    PSU
    xfx pro 450
Just to add my 2 cents, If you are to use System Restore at any time and for whatever reason.
make Sure to exit or deactivate any security software or suite you have installed. Restore is
partial to this and will fail if not done.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    windows 11 22631.3447
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    MSI Raider GE76
    CPU
    Core i9 12th gen 12900HK 2.9 MHz
    Motherboard
    MSI
    Memory
    32 Gigs DDR5-4800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVidia RTX 3070 Ti / 8 Gigs DDR6
    Sound Card
    DYNAUDIO - Klipsch 2.1 THX - Sound Effects by Nahimic 3
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17.3" 1920 x 1080 360 Hz 3 ms, IPS / Connected to MSI 32 inch curved @ 165 Hz
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080 / Both
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 990 Pro 2TB (OS) - Solidigm P41 2TB (Storage)
    PSU
    280 watts
    Case
    MSI GE series
    Cooling
    internal
    Keyboard
    Steelseries
    Mouse
    G903 Lightspeed
    Internet Speed
    1000 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox / Opera GX- Do not like Edge
    Antivirus
    Malwarebytes'
    Other Info
    just ask.
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 22H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    MSI GT73 7RE VR Titan
    CPU
    Intel Core i7 7820HK 2.9 Ghz
    Motherboard
    MSI
    Memory
    16 Gigs DDR4 2400 Mhz
    Graphics card(s)
    nVidia 1070 8GB RAM
    Sound Card
    DYNAUDIO / Nahimic 2
    Monitor(s) Displays
    IPS / 120HZ
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080P
    Hard Drives
    Samsung NVME EVO 970 1TB / Samsung SSD (SATA) 1TB
    PSU
    240 watts
    Case
    MSI
    Cooling
    Internal
    Mouse
    Logitech G903 Lightspeed
    Keyboard
    Steelseries
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s
    Browser
    Firefox / Vivaldi
    Antivirus
    MalwareBytes'
    Other Info
    none.

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP
    CPU
    Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-4800MQ CPU @ 2.70GHz
    Motherboard
    Product : 190A Version : KBC Version 94.56
    Memory
    16 GB Total: Manufacturer : Samsung MemoryType : DDR3 FormFactor : SODIMM Capacity : 8GB Speed : 1600
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA Quadro K3100M; Intel(R) HD Graphics 4600
    Sound Card
    IDT High Definition Audio CODEC; PNP Device ID HDAUDIO\FUNC_01&VEN_111D&DEV_76E0
    Hard Drives
    Model Hitachi HTS727575A9E364
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender
    Other Info
    Mobile Workstation
To restore the hives, boot into another os or winpe and run the regres.cmd

regbak7.jpg
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i5-8400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    2x8gb 3200mhz
    Monitor(s) Displays
    benq gw2480
    PSU
    bequiet pure power 11 400CM
    Cooling
    cryorig m9i
  • Operating System
    win7
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    pentium g5400
    Motherboard
    gigabyte b365m ds3h
    Memory
    1x8gb 2400
    PSU
    xfx pro 450
The one caveat with the reg export method is that it will only backup the hives which have been loaded into Regedit. It won't backup any hives which are loaded when required such as COMPONENTS, DRIVERS and SMI. Those three are all used by Windows Update to an extent.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11, Windows 10, Linux Fedora Cinnamon
Another free option is the Tweaking.com Registry Backup program, available at Bleeping Computer. I have been using that for years, as well as doing weekly System Restores and full Macrium system images. Someone said you can never have TOO MANY BACKUPS!

Have a great day.

Regards,
Phil
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3527)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS8930 SE
    CPU
    Intel i7-9700K 4700 MHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 8930
    Memory
    32 GB (4 x 8GB SK Hynix DDR4 @1333 MHz) (2666 MHz)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 (6 GB) GDDR6 300 MHz
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell UltraSharp U2518D 25"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    NVMe Intel 1024 TB
    Seagate 2 TB, SATA-III
    PSU
    850 W Gold Standard
    Case
    Dell XPS 8930 Base (Special Edition)
    Cooling
    Air
    Keyboard
    Dell 0G4D2W
    Mouse
    Dell MOCZUL
    Internet Speed
    Download 553 Mbps, Upload 686 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Kaspersky Premium, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.1.31
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3527)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    CPU
    i7-9750H 4.5 GHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Memory
    16 GB (2 x 8GB @ 1333 MHz) DDR4-2666 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce 1650 4 GB GDDR5
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell XPS 15 7590, 15.6" InfinityEdge Anti-Glare, Non-Touch
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    512 GB M.2 PCle NVMe SK Hynix
    PSU
    130W Power Adapter
    Case
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Cooling
    Air
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Keyboard
    Laptop
    Internet Speed
    Download: 400 Mbps, Upload: 203 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Kaspersky Premium, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.27.0

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