How to Repair broken Registry items in Windows 10

The Windows 10 registry is a quintessential system component. It contains all the machine-specific settings and information regarding almost every feature on your computer. You must repair broken registry items on Windows 10 to its smooth functioning.

Whether its preferences applications, or attached devices, the registry keeps track of this information. Considering that the registry is crucial for normal computer functioning, a corrupt registry can easily turn your computer into a brick. This is because modifying the registry usually leads to registry corruption which can have dire consequences on your system. In this tutorial, we look at how you can repair broken registry items in windows 10.

What causes Broken registry in Windows 10?

In most cases, what causes a broken registry in windows 10 is tinkering with the registry settings. If you change a part of the registry, it’s possible that you’ll corrupt its files. It is therefore recommended to desist from modifying the registry files. Unless it’s very necessary, modifying the registry keys is highly discouraged.

Problems with a Broken/Corrupted registry

With a broken registry, you will experience the following issues:

Boot failure– Your computer fails to boot and pops a blue screen error at startup. The error remains, and the boot halts at the stage. 

Blue screen error– Your computer may boot if there is minimal system damage. However, after some use a blue screen displays. You will lose your unsaved files in the system. Though this damage is minimal, it’s also important to correct it before it escalates.

How to backup the Windows Registry

Before running a registry repair, it’s important to backup the registry files. This enables you to roll back to the previous registry version when something goes wrong. To back your registry, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Press Windows +R button to open the run dialog box. Type  ‘Regedit‘ and hit ENTER.

regedit

Step 2: On the title bar in the Windows Registry, click on the ‘File‘ option and select ‘Export‘.

repair broken registry items

Step 3: On the next Window, Choose a descriptive name of your registry backup file and define the location to save it. Next, hit Enter.

define registry file location

The backup process will only take a few minutes and in no time, the backup registry copy will be ready.

Registry-backup-file

There are a variety of ways you can use to fix the broken registry. Whether it is restoring your registry to a previously recorded point repairing it or fixing windows 10, we have all tested repair methods. We’ll begin with the methods which have been vouched for by most users as effective. If the first method doesn’t solve your problem, then move to the next until you get a registry fix.

Repair Broken Registry items in Windows 10

There are a variety of ways you can use to fix the broken registry. Whether it is restoring your registry to a previously recorded point repairing it or fixing windows 10, we have all tested repair methods. We’ll begin with the methods which have been vouched for by most users as effective. If the first method doesn’t solve your problem, then move to the next until you get a registry fix.

1) Repair your PC

The best and most effective fix for repairing a broken registry is repairing the windows 10 . To repair windows 10, you’ll need a Windows installation disc or a bootable USB drive.
Follow the steps below to repair your OS:

Step 1: Insert your windows installation disk and reboot your computer

Step 2: Windows will prompt you to press any key to boot from the DVD. Press a key and wait for the installation process to begin.

Step 3: The computer will show a screen with multiple options. Choose “Repair your computer” and follow the on-screen prompts to fix your system. The advantage of windows 10 repair is that it doesn’t erase your data. It is also useful for rolling your OS to a stable state.

Repair your computer

2) Running  SFC scan

System File Checker, popularly known as SFC, is a built-in command-line tool in Windows that scans and repairs broken and corrupt system files. The SFC has been known to fix registry files. To run the SFC scanner, follow the steps below.

 Step 1: Click the Windows key to open start menu. Type ‘Command prompt‘ in the search bar.

command prompt option in taskbar

 Step 2: From the options list, right-click on the command prompt option and click on ‘run as administrator‘ 

run command prompt as administrator

Click “Yes” when the system prompts for admin permission 

 Step 3: Next, run  sfc/scannow command to start scanning and repairing your system files. This will take quite a while

repair broken registry items sfc command

The system will start scanning your Windows system and repair corrupted registry keys.

3) Use the DISM command

The SFC scan usually yields 3 results:

  1. The system was scanned but no issues were found
  2. The system was scanned, errors were found and the scanner was able to fix the errors.
  3. Errors were found but the scanner was unable to fix them.

So what happens when errors cannot be fixed by SFC command? This is where DISM comes in. DISM – Deployment Image Servicing and Management –  is another built-in command-line tool that fixes issues that SFC cannot fix. It scans your system for file integrity issues and fixes errors and corrupt registry keys. To repair broken registry items, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Run command prompt as Administrator by typing ‘command prompt‘ in the search bar. On the pull-up menu right-click on ‘Command Prompt‘ option and click on ‘Run as administrator

run command prompt as administrator

Step 2: When the command prompt window launches, run the command below

Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth

The command searches for any corrupt files or any errors with your Windows system, without attempting to fix or repair them. If no errors are found, the command should take a couple of seconds.

DISM check health

Next, run the command:

Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

The /RestoreHealth parameter scans the system for corrupt system files and automatically remedies the issues and errors found. The scan will usually take much longer if corrupt or broken registry files are found.

4) Repair registry with system restore

Microsoft’s Windows System restore feature is a feature that restores Windows to an earlier point in time when everything was functioning perfectly. It comes in handy in fixing system errors which include corrupt registry keys.

To perform system restore, follow the following procedure:

Step 1: Press Windows Key + S combination to quickly access the search bar. Type Recovery and hit ENTER.

recovery - system restore

Step 2: On the pull-up menu, select ‘Recovery‘.

Recovery options

Step 3: The next window that pops up is the ‘Advanced recovery Tools‘ with 3 options. Click on the ‘Open System Restore’ Windows as shown.

Open-system-restore

Step 4:  The system restore Window presents you with 2 options: To restore using the system recommended restore point or you can choose to select your own restore point. For convenience, select the system Recommended restore option.

Restore-system-files-and-settings---recommended-restore

Step 5: Confirm the restore point by clicking on ‘Finish‘. This will commence the system restore process. Once completed, the system will reboot to an earlier point in time when your Windows 10 PC was functioning as expected.

problem resetting your PC

5) Reset your PC

Windows 10 allows you to reset your PC without losing your files. The option refreshes system apps help to fix registry editor issues. To reset your PC and keep personal data, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Press Windows Key + I. In the Setting WIndows, navigate and click on Update and Security” .

Update-and-security

Step 2: In the next Window, click on the ‘Recovery’ option located at the left pane.

Recovery-option

Step 3: Click on the  ‘Get Started‘ option under the ‘Reset this PC‘ option. Windows will prompt you to keep or remove your files. Choose the “Keep my files” option and wait for on-screen instructions. 

Reset-This-PC

After the windows reset completes, your PC will restart automatically. The method is useful, especially for fixing highly damaged or corrupt registries. In case, the process fails to work, install windows from scratch.

Wrapping up

In this guide, we have outlined the causes, tell-tale signs of a corrupt registry and how you can fix broken registry entries. In the event you suspect that your registry is corrupt, you can always try one of the methods outlined in this tutorial.

2 thoughts on “How to Repair broken Registry items in Windows 10”

  1. A good article/explanation !!
    But .. what to do if you dont have access to a running Windows System ..
    Your Windows system is not “booting” anymore ??
    Thanks and greetings

    • Great question Adelin. In that case, you may have to consider repairing your PC using a bootable USB or DVD drive as mentioned in the first step.

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