Creating Registry Keys or Values

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated February 8, 2021)

The dynamic nature of the Registry means that the information it contains is always changing depending on the needs of the operating system, programs, or you. Therefore, it is possible to add new values to the Registry or to even add new keys. The Registry Editor allows you to quickly and easily add values or keys.

Why would you want to add keys or values? Quite honestly, it doesn't do you much good to add either item unless you know that it is going to be used by an application or by the operating system itself.

As an example of how to add a new key, let's say you wanted to add one to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE hive. Just follow these steps:

  1. Start the Registry Editor, as you normally would.
  2. Click on the small arrow at the left side of HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, in the left side of the Registry Editor. The Registry Editor should show you all the items under this key.
  3. Locate and click on the SOFTWARE key (this selects it).
  4. Choose Edit | New | Key. The SOFTWARE key is expanded, and a new key is added beneath it.
  5. Type the name you want used for the new key.
  6. Press Enter. The new key takes its place in the alphabetic listing of keys under SOFTWARE.

At this point, you have created a new key. You can then add values to the new key, following much the same process. The only difference is that, in step 4, you select Edit | New and then the type of value you want to add. The information that you add to the Registry remains there until it is either changed by you or by a program that you may be using.

 This tip (10957) applies to Windows 7, 8, and 10.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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