Importing a Portion of the Registry

Written by Barry Dysert (last updated May 17, 2021)

3

If you have previously exported a portion of the Registry (covered under the tip titled "Exporting a Portion of the Registry"), you can later import it. This restores that portion of the Registry to the condition it was in at the time of export. Note, however, that much of the Registry is interdependent, so if it's been a while since you did the export you should exercise caution that you don't introduce an inconsistency with the import.

Be default, Registry exports are stored in .reg files. In addition to storing the actual keys and values, they also contain the information necessary to ensure that the import affects the correct portions of the Registry.

There are a few different ways you can import a .reg file. One way is to right-click the file and select Merge from the Context menu. Another way is to double-click the .reg file. With either of these methods you'll be presented with a cautionary message asking if you are sure you want to continue. Clicking "Yes" will cause the Registry to be updated with the information in the file.

The third way to import a .reg file is to do it from within the Registry Editor. All you need to do is choose the Import option from the File menu. Specify the name of the .reg file to be imported and click Open. You will then get a confirmation message that the Registry has been updated.

 This tip (12227) applies to Windows 7, 8, and 10.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 35 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer. He is currently a software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. When not working with Windows or writing Tips, Barry is an amateur writer. His first non-fiction book is titled "A Chronological Commentary of Revelation." ...

MORE FROM BARRY

Understanding Event Logs

Windows event logs are great resources to see what is "invisibly" going on with your system. By understanding the various ...

Discover More

Using Maps

Offline maps is a useful app if you want to look someplace up or get directions. This tip explains how to use these maps.

Discover More

Understanding Virtual Memory

Computers can address far more locations than may exist in physical memory. The key to this feature is the use of virtual ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Backing Up the Windows Registry

Windows wouldn't function if it weren't for the Registry. It's important, therefore, to back it up�"especially before ...

Discover More

Exporting a Portion of the Registry

Windows wouldn't function if it weren't for the Registry, and many system tweaks involve editing it. Before making such ...

Discover More

How the Registry is Organized

There may come a time when you need to view or even modify the registry. In such a case, it's good to know how the ...

Discover More
Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is three more than 4?

2021-05-18 13:28:07

Tomek

The problem with windows is that the registry got changed, and now windows are not starting. To fix it, I need to restore registry. so it is Catch 22 all over again.


2021-05-18 10:25:48

J. Woolley

@Tomek
First fix the problem with Windows (Google "windows will not start"). Once you can start Windows, then you can import the .reg file.


2021-05-17 13:19:27

Tomek

How do you import the .reg file if windows would not start?


Newest Tips