Home > Articles

0672311836

  • Print
  • + Share This

3.4. Software in the Registry

If you look at the exam objectives that Microsoft provides, you won't find the Registry under the software heading; you'll find it under the configuring Windows 95 heading. The reason for covering it here is that, not only have I already mentioned the Registry, but also I will mention it even further in the next couple of chapters.

The Registry is a hierarchical database where Windows 95 keeps its configuration of hardware, software, user specific settings, and so on. It replaces the need for AUTOEXEC.BAT, CONFIG.SYS, and INI files. Windows 95 still maintains a copy of these files for backward compatibility. Additionally, Windows 95 will load any real-mode drivers mentioned in these files that weren't converted during setup.

The Registry comprises two files: SYSTEM.DAT and USER.DAT. The SYSTEM.DAT contains all system specific information. Likewise, the USER.DAT contains all the user-specific information. If profiles have been enabled, each user who logs onto Windows 95 will have his or her own individual USER.DAT created.

As mentioned in Chapter 2, the SYSTEM.DAT and USER.DAT are automatically backed up as SYSTEM.DA0 and USER.DA0.

You can find these files in the Windows directory. If profiles have been enabled, each user will have a directory created to store his or her settings. That person's copy of the USER.DAT is stored in that directory. I'll talk more about profiles in Chapter 5.

You can view and edit the Registry directly by using the program REGEDIT.EXE.

TIP

You may be asked how to invoke the Registry Editor on the exam. You should know that REGEDIT.EXE is the command line for starting it.

NOTE

Be careful with the Registry Editor. When you make changes in it, most of them are dynamic. In other words, the change takes effect immediately.

If you can modify the configuration through some other means, such as the Control Panel or the System Policy Editor, you should do so. Only use the Registry Editor to modify the configuration when you have to.

NOTE

It isn't like the old INI files where you can experiment and see what happens. Modifying the Registry incorrectly could have systemwide effects that you may only be able to repair by reinstalling Windows 95.

3.4.1. How applications use the Registry

Applications store their configuration information in the Registry. When they are written specifically for Windows 95, they update the Registry automatically upon installation.

Older applications, such as Win16 applications that still need the INI files such as WIN.INI and SYSTEM.INI, are handled a little differently. If you upgraded Windows 3.x with Windows 95 (installed it into the same directory), Windows 95 took the settings in the INI files and updated them into the Registry. If you installed Windows 95 into a separate directory, you need to reinstall all applications in order for them to be stored properly in the Registry.

3.4.2. Structure of the Registry

You can see by Figure 3.19 that the Registry is broken down into six keys of information called the root keys. These root keys have a similar look and feel of a directory structure. There are subkeys inside of subkeys similar to subdirectories inside of subdirectories. Table 3.1 provides a breakdown of what each key contains.

Figure 3.19. The Microsoft Registry Editor.

Table 3.1. Windows 95 Registry Keys.

Key

Contains...

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT

OLE and file associations.

HKEY_USERS

information about all users of this computer.

HKEY_CURRENT_USER

user-specific information about the currently logged on user. This key is created at log on.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

machine-specific information: drivers, hardware, etc.

HKEY_CURRENT_CONFIG

storage of multiple configurations such as when a laptop docked or undocked in a docking station.

HKEY_DYN_DATA

the dynamic status of devices. Used for Plug and Play configuration. Created at boot up and not part of either of the Registry files.


TIP

Even though you do not need to memorize every single piece of information that is stored in the Registry and where it's stored, it is important that you know what each HKEY contains.

3.4.3. Storing Registry values

In Figure 3.20, you'll see the configuration of the user who's currently logged onto this machine. I've expanded several of the subkeys on the left so that you can see the directory-like structure. On the right, you'll see some sample values of that subkey. The three values at the top are legitimate, whereas I plugged in the three at the bottom, beginning with the word sample, to show you the three types of values. The values consist of a value name and the actual data of that value.

Figure 3.20. Adding values in the Microsoft Registry Editor.

The Binary value is of course, a binary number. The DWORD value is also a binary value, but the data of a DWORD value is hexadecimal. A program or hardware device sets both of these types of values. Even though you can edit them, it's a good idea to leave them alone.

A String value, however, can be helpful in troubleshooting and configuration. In the next section, I'll give you an example.

3.4.4. Searching the Registry

If you haven't by now, expand out some of the keys and see just how overwhelmingly big the Registry is. Finding a specific value that you may need is like looking for a needle in a haystack. Like most Microsoft programs, a search option will help. By clicking on the Edit menu option (Figure 3.21), you'll see the Find option.

Using the Find option, I am going to search for the string sourcepath. This particular search provides the result that you see in Figure 3.22. Notice the path to this particular key at the bottom of the dialog box.

Figure 3.21. The Find option of the Registry Editor.

Figure 3.22. Results of the Registry search.

NOTE

By the way, the source path is where Windows 95 looks for the installation files. This is a very handy thing to change. Did you install from a CD-ROM? If so, do you hate it whenever you make a change that requires the CD-ROM and you have to go hunting for it?

NOTE

If so, copy the contents of the WIN95 folder from the CD-ROM down to the hard drive. Then, change this key to point to that new location. From then on, Windows 95 will get the required software from that directory.

3.4.5. Editing the Registry values

Once again, I must caution you on editing the Registry. Only change the values if you know what the outcome will be.

Editing the Registry values is as simple as double-clicking on them. When I double-click on the source path value, the dialog box in Figure 3.23 appears. As you can see, you can change the string value simply by typing in the new value. The editing dialog box that appears will vary depending on the type of value that you are editing.

Figure 3.23. Editing a string value in the Registry.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.

Overview


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information


To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.

Surveys

Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.

Newsletters

If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information


Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.

Security


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.

Children


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.

Marketing


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information


If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.

Choice/Opt-out


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information


Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents


California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure


Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.

Links


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact


Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice


We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020