Accessing a Windows XP ntuser.dat file on a Windows 2000 advanced server computer

Hello, I have an XP computer that just stopped. My guess is that there is something wrong with the motherboard and I don't have time to look into it until the weekend. So, as a temporary solution I have taken the hard disk and put it onto my Windows 2000 dvanced server computer.

All as I want, to make things easy, is get into the XP registry (probably the ntuser.dat file) and export some entries under some software subkeys I had installed on the XP computer.

I can't seem to open the file from the XP computer (the hard disk now being in my w2k computer) with any utilities and see the hive structure in my Windows 2000 computer. Does anyone have any suggestions?

I have looked at some advanced registry editors but I am hesitant to pay for a full version of any of them until I have seen them at least open a file correctly on the trial version. But, some, that may actually work, won't allow opening an "on the side" registry file without paying for a full version--kind of a chicken and the egg thing.

I'm guessing the reason regedt32 does not show any subkeys when I load the hive file is because the Windows XP hive file is a different version to the Windows 2000 hive version, but, like I said, this is just a guess.

I also tried to run the regedit.exe file sitting on the Windows XP Hard Disk but that didn't work (not surprisingly).

Any suggestions or insights appreciated.
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Hi there,
I can't help you with the registry but there are many programs that will work just by starting there executables from the directory where you've installed them. Also there are programs that will not work such simply but that have some registry file in the directory they are installed in. So you can use this file to import the needed info into the registry.
Hope that helps a little!
Get the Avast! bartpe CD, it contains offline registry editing tools. Another possibility is the UBCD4Win.
RegProctorAuthor Commented:
In this case I need the custom settings of one particular program. I have moved it from laptop to dextop and back several times and know the specifics of what needs to be done and why.

I looked at the Avast! bartpe CD. That's a great CD to have and I'll probably get it just have. However, the registry tools don't seem to allow for files from another system in a computer on another hard disk. Otherwise, I am sure they would work.
10 Tips to Protect Your Business from Ransomware

Did you know that ransomware is the most widespread, destructive malware in the world today? It accounts for 39% of all security breaches, with ransomware gangsters projected to make $11.5B in profits from online extortion by 2019.

i've used the registry editor and it worked, you just need to open the correct registry files.
RegProctorAuthor Commented:
Thanks, I didn't find an answer to this here but I did eventually find a work around to the problem.
if you post the solution that you used, the moderators can give you a refund of your points.
RegProctorAuthor Commented:
In this case the solution was just to borrow an XP computer, put the hard disk in that machine, extract the registry keys I wanted and put the hard disk back into the 2000 computer and import the .reg file of extracted keys.
PAQed with points refunded (125)

Community Support Moderator

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows 2000

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.