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Thread: What if there was no Registry in Windows?

  1. #11
    mezanul's Avatar
    mezanul is offline Beginner
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    Jan 2010


    Interesting question!

    Actually I think then we would have faced less Windows problems then. No registry, means no registry cleaners, no registry defragment apps, no virus issues...
    I forgot, no registry tweaks too!! But, I guess then we would have applied the tweaks using configuration files, just like in Linux.
    Actually, I prefer apps that doesn't add anything to my registry. I do prefer portable apps more, and also likes apps that supports portable installation. I think, every app should at least provide portable install option just like my favorite HyperSnap, AudialsOne, etc. do.

  2. #12
    LeeW is offline Gold Member
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    Jan 2010


    What if there was no Registry in Windows?
    My Right-Click Extender app would be useless hahaha.

    Could you imagine the overloaded forums with questions: I edited this here file in this here folder and now me puter just died and I don't know what to do.

    I don't mind the registry so much as I usually know what I am looking for. I do wish sometimes it was a tad easier to narrow things down but that's the way it was designed, to keep average users from messing with it.

    And to add: For the Love of all things peanut butter, who on this planet would like seeing their folders loaded with config files, I allready get annoyed with the desktop.ini files everywheres and trying to copy to new locations with a constant, the file desktop.ini allready exists, would you like to.................

    Old post but I would like to see what the members that commented over a year ago have to say about it now.

  3. #13
    FraserBell is offline Beginner
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    Jun 2010
    Kamloops BC Canada


    I don't know if RickyF is still around to see these latest replies,
    but the rest of you following this thread might be interested in the following:

    Quote Originally Posted by RickyF View Post
    I remember Windows before the Registry
    When was that, exactly?

    I recall tweaking the Registry in WFWG 3.11 in the early 1990s (Yes, it was there back then, and earlier).

    It has been so long, now, that I can't immediately recall what the tweaks were about, but I believe mostly they had something to do with file associations or something similar.

    They were done under Microsoft's instructions to fix some long-forgotten problems with updates to some optional extended WFWG networking component(s), I believe.

    I do recall that it looked remarkably the same as the current-day HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT when it was opened!

    In Win95, the original Registry was retained, and most of the INIs were moved into it, just as they were in early NT.

    Quote Originally Posted by RickyF View Post
    It was more stable. It was much less likely to require reinstall due to Registry corruption because the file did not exist. Copying an application from one system to another was a breeze, installation was not necessary. System management was easier because each application was only responsible for itself.

    It was a simpler, gentler time when product activation was only a dream in Bill Gates' eye.

    Other OSes do not use a hierarchic, flat file database to control the OS. If it is going to exist, and I would argue it should not, at least the coders at Microsoft could have used a relational DB.
    Rose-Coloured Glasses

    While this statement is partly true, it is not entirely true.

    Yes, it was more stable, but it did have its own stability issues.

    I recall a lot of problems with Blue Screens, Frozen Systems, and corruption issues, especially with drivers and 32-Bit-Access problems, some that would refuse to let Windows boot. But, at least you could boot to DOS, edit the appropriate INI and remark out the offending entries & drivers ... that is, once you were able to diagnose the problem and locate the proper information to know what you were looking for.

    Microsoft has certainly stayed securely tied to its roots in one respect:
    For the most part, the Error Messages are as undecipherable and useless today as they ever were back then!

    Copying some applications from one system to another was indeed as described, but in many other cases did require the same installation and setup headaches we experience today.

    A good example came in the advanced database applications of the time (such as dBase III/IV and dBase 5 for Windows, Paradox, Access, etc., requiring IDAPI and similar BDE or BDECFG interfaces to get databases and components talking to each other, as well as RS_SQLIF for SQL interfaces).

    Or CorelDraw, Ventura Publisher, Process Camera, Scanners (& Twain, ATAPI, etc.).

    And endless studying of CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT settings, experimenting and testing to find the best configurations (and corresponding changes in the various Windows INIs) to squeeze the maximum performance out of Windows so it would run longer before it froze or crashed again.

    But, once you made it through all that, if you did things right, in the end it was relatively stable and reliable.

    (BTW: In order to look up & get some of this old info straight, I just fired up my 486/66 that still runs WFWG 3.11 on my network.

    Yes, I still use it on a more or less regular basis, and it is amazingly fast and stable, a regular screamer with its old apps when compared to the modern Super-Bloatware-Infested systems! It is still the best machine, running circles around the latest machines, for certain Business Administration tasks!!!

    And, I can't recall how many years ago it was that it last crashed!)

    While I don't think it needs to be nearly as cryptic and cluttered as it is, the newer all-in-one Registry is a much superior solution because it pulls all those CONFIG.SYS, AUTOEXEC.BAT, INIs, and other widely-scattered configuration and integration files together into one central, searchable location.

    No more hunting through dozens of directories to try to find the right configuration file, then opening the file and ploughing through the contents hoping to find the correct setting.

    True, at times the inside of the Registry might feel much the same, but it is a big improvement over the old methods.

    Oh, yeah! AND there were no equivalents to Registry Cleaners that would hunt down all those Config, Autoexec, INI, and scattered configuration files to scan them for problems and correct the problems. You had to do all that yourself, manually, tediously, one at a time, piece by piece.

    Fraser-Bell Info Tech
    Calgary AB Canada
    Last edited by FraserBell; 28th June 2010 at 12:12. Reason: To add the "Oh, yeah" at the end!

  4. #14
    arvind_kumar's Avatar
    arvind_kumar is offline Senior Member
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    Jul 2008


    Windows without Registry is as like Human Without Heart...
    so Registry is Heart of Windows.

  5. #15
    Dude111 is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    Jun 2010


    Quote Originally Posted by RickyF
    I remember Windows before the Registry
    Hmmmmmmm i dont remember that Ricky!!

    I thought all way down to Win1.0 had a registry.......

    What win version didnt have one?

    Very interesting!!

  6. #16
    riteshtechie's Avatar
    riteshtechie is offline Software Developer
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    Mar 2009


    Quote Originally Posted by Dude111 View Post

    I thought all way down to Win1.0 had a registry.......
    I started with Windows ME :P

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