How to Backup and Restore the Registry in Windows 11

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This post shows students and new users steps to backup and restore the registry in Windows 11. Windows registry is a database that stores all of Windows settings in hierarchical structure, including most applications installed on your system. It is very critical and making mistakes in Windows registry is something you might want to avoid.

Since we write about enhancing and improving Windows on this site lot, and some of your guides show you to do it in the registry, we want to show you how to make a backup of Windows registry to protect your system in cases where mistakes were made and restoring your system is the only option to get it working again.

A mistake in Windows registry can be dangerous and render your system inoperable. So keeping Windows registry healthy and clean should be your priority.

There might be other tools that one can use to backup and restore Windows registry. However, the registry’s export and import feature is a solid option to use. There’s no substitute for a solid backup plan, so it’s a good idea to protect your system by creating a backup of your registry before making any changes to it.

To get started with backing up and restore the registry in Windows 11, follow the steps below.

How to backup Windows registry

As mentioned above, it’s always a good practice to backup Windows registry before making changes. If you have other tools to back up the registry, then use them. However, Windows registry export and import feature is a great option.

Click the Start menu, then search for Registry Editor. Under Best match, click the Registry Editor app to open.

registry editor in windows 11

This should open Windows registry app.

windows registry app

Next, click File ==> Export as shown below.

windows registry

In the export window, select the location you want to save the backup, then type in a file name for your backup. You may want to include today’s date in the file name for easy reference. 

At the bottom of the export window, you have two options under Export Range.

  • All: this will backup the ENTIRE registry.
  • Selected Branch: this will only backup the registry key you had selected and all subkeys within it.
windows 11 registry export save

When you’re ready, click the Save button to save the registry.

This could take a minute or two to export the entire registry.

How to restore Windows registry

After exporting the registry, you can always restore it and bring it back to the state in which it was in when you exported. This is useful in cases where you’ve made mistakes and want to restore the registry to its working state.

To import the registry, open the Registry Editor by searching for it in the Start menu. Then click File ==> Import as shown below.

windows registry import

Next, browse to the location in which you saved the exported file. Select it, then click Open to import.

windows 11 registry import select

That should do it!

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to export and import Windows registry. If you find any error above or have something to add, please use the comment form below.

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