The truth about registry cleaners…should we use them?

Pros of registry cleaning:

Registry cleaners play a role in helping to find issues and remove conflicts between orphaned entries. This can help in reducing the amount of PC lock-ups or freezes. They are pretty useful for those who frequently install and un-install a lot of software (like me). However, unlike what some users believe, registry cleaners would not “speed up” your PC.

Cons of registry cleaning:

Some of these registry cleaners do not make it very clear as to how dangerous removing certain entries can be. For example, sometimes there are certain .dll files that are required by Windows or certain programs in order to run correctly.  The problem here is some users are unaware of the risks and I notice that there’s a high tendency for these users to guess and blindly click on “Clean” (or something similar). I have seen some of these users complain in forums that a certain registry cleaner ‘screwed up’ their PC  and they had to reformat Windows. Too bad for them and in this case, I would not blame the innocent unknowing user.

So, should we use them?:

The answer depends on what type of PC user you are.

Are you a beginner, intermediate or an experienced user? Do you know what to do if things go wrong? Do you frequently install and uninstall a lot of software?

If you’re a beginner and you do not frequently install and uninstall a lot of software, then avoid registry cleaning. The ‘benefits’ from doing so does not outweigh the risk you face.

If you’re a beginner but you frequently install and uninstall a lot of software, then registry cleaning might help. Take note that neither am I saying it’s a must nor am I recommending to do it.  However, if you decide to go ahead, let me emphasize and remind you on the fact that you must always be cautious when ‘cleaning’ the registry. It’s better to check before you remove anything. If possible, doing a backup of the registry or setting up a System Restore point is recommended.

If you are slightly more experienced & you trust yourself & know what you are doing, you can manually go to the registry using Regedit. Do this only if you are careful & you know precisely what you are removing. Again, take note that I’m not condoning the practice.

Personal opinion & experiences:

I have tried most of these system cleaning tools before but I find that CCleaner is the one that suits most users – be it for beginners, intermediate or experienced users. Why? It’s the safest and most reliable registry cleaner I’ve known and I’m not the only one saying that. Most other experts would agree with me.

User opinion & experiences:

According to most users, here are the 3 “safest” freeware registry cleaners:

Apart from those, two other popular system-cleaning utilities would be Advance SystemCare and Glary Utilties

Experts’ opinion & experiences:

I STRONGLY suggest and HIGHLY recommend you take a look at these 2 articles made by Windows experts:

Conclusion:

Registry cleaning has always been a ‘hot’ topic among supporters and those that are against it. Personally, I believe that a person should know and realize that using a registry cleaner is risky business and that if he/she chooses to do it, the reason should not be to ‘speed up’ their PCs (a popular myth that’s widely spread on the web) but rather to reduce the amount of PC lock-ups or freezes and to  remove unnecessary keys from uninstalled programs.

A wise and interesting quotation I found on the web is this:

A “good” program is only as safe and as good as the person using it, and the purpose for which it is designed to be used.

Disclaimer: This article was written based on author’s opinion & experience. The author neither supports nor is going against the concept of ‘registry cleaning’.  It’s up to the individual to make the best choice for himself/herself. This article is meant only for informational purposes and to remind users the ‘riskiness’ that comes along with the practice of ‘registry cleaning’. Hope no one is offended.

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