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15. The Registry > 15.1. The five registry hives

The five registry hives

Depending on your XP configuration and the programs you’ve installed, your Registry may have thousands of settings or tens of thousands of them. The settings are organized into five main Registry sections, called Registry hives . Figure 15-1 shows the structure of the Registry (the hives simply appear as folders), displayed in the Registry Editor.

Here what each Registry hive does:

  • HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT. Contains information about file types, filename extensions, and other details related to files. It tells XP how to handle different file types, and controls basic interface options like double-clicking and context menus.

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER. Contains configuration information about the setup of the person currently logged into XP. It controls the desktop, as well as XP’s specific appearance and behavior for that individual, including screen colors and the arrangement of the desktop. It also manages the connections to the network and to devices like digital cameras or printers.


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