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Puzzling Registry Size Issue


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Once you get all the bloat, wasted space, and MRUs out of the registry and have it optimized, you can take steps to keep it that way. For protecting the registry from damage or undesired changes when testing new software or just as a failsafe when tweaking, check out Testrun by BB. The site is down at the moment, but here's a link to a copy in Archive.org. Testrun is a collection of batch files that make backups of the registry and system configuration files and enables you to load a duplicate set while keeping your normal registry out of harms way. Archive.org didn't have the batch files thmselves so I uploaded them here. The batch files are easily modified to expand their uses. I modified them to automatically restore the systems registry and core files on every reboot. Details here. This puts an end to the registry bloat, fragmentation and stored MRU problems. It also protects it from modification by users and malware.

The batch files can just as easily be altered to allow the usage of 2 completely different sets of registry files. Possible uses for such a setup include:

  1. *Switching between 2 different network configurations without having to re-enter the settings.
    *Storing configuration data and the registry entries for apps installed on CDs or in encrypted containers so that there's no evidence of their existence in your normal registry.
    *Setting up multiple configurations on one operating system for application testing.

DOS is a 9X users best friend.


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  • 11 months later...

can someone reupload these apps again.

all rapid links are dead

I am on WinMe and if I was on 98 I would probably have bumped in similar issues as the cumulated size of my classes.dat and system.dat is above 13MB. The biggest eaters in terms of size seem to be DirectX and the dotnet runtimes with their huge amount of CLSIDs keys.

I think I have read about the registry files having a maximum size on Win9x but I cannot find anything about it now.

What seems certain anyway is that scanreg is unable to compact registry files which are above 8MB.

IMO the best doc about the win9x registry is in japanese : http://www.haltz.com/rgstry2/index.htm

There is one page in english though but for the rest you'll need to use babelfish or google translate. He details several different methods for compacting the registry and there is alot about the registry stucture.

This guy wrote a registry compactor, RegCon which is the only one that does actually work amongst the many claiming to to do that and that I have tried.

He also wrote a registry analyzer, Registrip, which has no equivalent and which displays charts and pies about registry occupation (used space, empty space, dead gaps).

I have translated those two interesting freebies some time ago, the first partially and the second more completely.

I have uploaded those translated apps on Rapidshare in case you find them useful to troubleshoot or circumvent your issue :


There is a couple of other utils you might find useful to hunt for stuff to delete from the registry :

Registry Space Profiler : http://www.tliquest.net/software/rsp/ and Pluto : http://sourceforge.net/projects/pluto

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Quote from the RapidSh** page:

This file is neither allocated to a Premium Account, or a Collector's Account, and can therefore only be downloaded 10 times.

This limit is reached.

Please try uploaded.to or a more accessible free host.
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  • 1 month later...

Hello there, Im having the same problem with registry, except mine collapses with 4,2MB. Therefore I cannot install Office or anything else. :angry: I was lucky to get my sound adapter working after deleting sound presets that were written in the registry (2MB !)

After bootscreen WIN shows blinking cursor and resets. Safe mode doesnt work and speaks about not enough memory. :blink: scanreg /fix and /opt didnt make a difference.

installed :

  • Nvidia display driver
  • Flash
  • Shockwave
  • WMP 9
  • Bluetooth software
  • 48bit LBA
  • ICQ 5
  • Java 5.0
  • IE 6 SP1
  • 98 SE SP1
  • nUSB
  • Sound Blaster drivers + mixer only
  • XviD codec

current registry sizes :

  • system.dat 4189kB
  • user.dat 629kB

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That does seem to be a very small size of system.dat to cause the same problem I had.

Mine is now about 12.5MB and still works OK.

Also I never had Safe Mode fail to boot.

If you're getting out of memory messages even trying to boot to Safe Mode, I would check that the config.sys and autoexec.bat files aren't full of unnecessary rubbish as the first thing.

You can do that by booting to DOS ("command prompt only").

The first thing I'd try is disabling the two files altogether, as Windows 98 should boot without them, using default settings IIRC.

Go into DOS and rename config.sys to config.s~s and autoexec.bat to autoexec.b~t.

See if you can boot into Safe Mode then.

Good luck! :)

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mode con codepage prepare=((852) C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\ega.cpi)

mode con codepage select=852

keyb cz,,C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\keybrd2.sys





device=C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\display.sys con=(ega,,1)


That means they are practically empty, the only difference is the himem.exe line, that is needed because I have 2GB of RAM.

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The files' contents indeed looks reasonable.

Interesting that you have 2GB of RAM.

I assume that configuration has worked for you in the past, with any necessary system.ini tweaks applied.

At what point exactly did the system stop working?


Edited by Dave-H
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Lecco, I bet it might work, if you reduce the RAM. Try 512MB (physical if possible), then work your way up. I had similar issue with larger registry after installing .NET 2.0 (adds TON of registry). After reducing RAM, all was ok. Of course, I would like to have all my RAM back!

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Thanks for your tips gentlemen, limiting RAM worked. :thumbup Office 2000 installed. B)

System.dat 5257 kB, User.dat 845 kB




MaxPhysPage=30000 (765MB RAM)




I am not sure, if all entries are relevant, but it works (command prompt as well) and that is what counts. :D

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