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Is regclean (www.regclean.com) for Windows a good program for enterprise? Is it safe? Can it be run on a running production server without fear of files becoming closed, unavailable, etc.?

  Regclean from http://www.regclean.com, is something I'm considering to download for use in the production, enterprise-level environment I support. If it handles open files gracefully, doesn't cause other apps to slow noticeably, and poses NO RISK AT ALL, I'd really like to try it out - after hours, of course. I'm a bit concerned about the possible problem of several products being out there under the same name; so, please refer to the one available at http://www.regclean.com. I understand that MS used to provide a download by this name, but KB article 299958 makes it clear they don't anymore.

    Something kind of scary is the fact that I get nothing but RED DONUTS when I google 'regclean' using my World-of-Trust (WOT) add-on to Firefox. But then again, I get YELLOW-look-out-beware!-caution! DONUTS when I google Experts-Exchange! hah! I'm asking about regclean because a coworker sent it to me, but I'm not sure if it's the same one as www.regclean.com, and I'd like to get the latest version and start from the source.


    I'm looking for a thumbs-up or thumbs-down from someone who has used regclean with a Windows server OS like Server 2003 to tell me if it has been effective and safe to use in a production environment. I am not looking for Vista or XP experience or advice or conclusions produced from googling product-info websites; I've already done that. The risk level is kind-of high here, and demands more checking than just basic research. I need to know if this is safe and robust and can be immediately deployed without downtime or resource hogging! If regclean is NOT the answer, please direct me to one that is free and good enough for enterprise. Please don't recommend RegCure; I had a bad experience with that one on a desktop; it even made google.com show up differently! Thx.
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T-Dev
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T-Dev
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2 Solutions
 
klj2361Commented:
Using any registry "cleaner" in an enterprise production environment is a very bad idea (especially if entries are automatically "fixed").  Chances are near 100% that sooner or later a valid registry entry will get trashed.  

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deroodeCommented:
The fact that Microsoft doesn't have or support a regclean  utility anymore is for me proof enough that the process of registry cleaning cannot be done safely.
Your production server registry should not get corrupt or bloated by software installs and deinstalls, because you do your testing on a test server.
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T-DevAuthor Commented:
All I said was that MS stopped support of a particular tool named "regclean"; I never said that MS has adopted a policy of not supporting registry cleaning. I also understand the concept that enterprise, by definition, is an environment in which everything should be clean, tested, and perfect to begin with, but the truth is that the places I work use applications that were designed just for their particular areas of work (geographic info. sys., training apps, db clients, other obscure apps I've never heard of...), and many of these applications don't have good uninstallers at all. So, my point is that an application installation might have been successfully tested in dev and test environments, but to install it in prod, we have to first uninstall the messed up or old stuff that's on it now, and... well, I suppose you see my point. Enterprise and enterprise apps are not always perfection.
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Kelly_WCommented:
Hello,
I personally use the registry cleaner from http://www.registry-cleaner.net for the last 7 years with not one single problem on Windows 2000, 2003, 2003 R2, or 2008 servers.
I run this at night when no one is on and I have the ability to reboot the server.
I also clear out the temp directory after I run this.
One gotcha is that you DO NOT want to clear the font registry settings on any servers, so I will always uncheck mark that one.
Otherwise, I do this on all of my clients' servers once a month faithfully with absolutely no problems.
Thanks,
Kelly W.
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klj2361Commented:
If you are sure you want to use one, jv16 PowerTools would be the one to use... Get it here.
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souseranCommented:
There isn't a registry cleaner that poses "NO RISK AT ALL."

For product removal, Revo Uninstaller is the better way to go than just buckshotting the registry. Run Revo Uninstaller in Advanced mode to clear out Registry settings and other files and folders that are left over after an uninstall.

http://www.revouninstaller.com/

You could also use the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility (WICU)

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/290301

As to your original question, I will tell you that when I try to go to the site you referenced, our Barracuda appliance gives me the following error:

"The Web site you are trying to access has been blocked by the (COMPANY NAME) Barracuda Web Filter because it contains the following spyware: Spyware.Rogue.Regclean"

Microsoft's stance on registry cleaning is this:

"We strongly recommend that you only change values in the registry that you understand or have been instructed to change by a source you trust, and that you back up the registry before making any changes."
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Kelly_WCommented:
Hello,
I agree with Microsoft's stance, if we lived in a perfect world and that every piece of software that was uninstalled truly removed itself COMPLETELY from the registry.  In actuality, I don't know of one piece of software that does this.  As a matter of fact most Windows OS, after they are first installed have many dead registry entries ( I have seen anywhere from 12 up to 200).
I would use a goo registry cleaner on my servers, as long as you do this when users are not on the server.
Thanks,
Kelly W.
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cantorisCommented:
I wouldn't trust any registry cleaning app as far as I could throw it - and would never run one on a desktop system that I didn't mind having to potentially reinstall as a result.  As for a server ... I shiver at the thought.  The risk is just too great for causing some freaky error.

Yes, some apps are rubbish at uninstalling, but what are a few left over keys in the grand scheme of an entire registry!?
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T-DevAuthor Commented:
Kelly_W: You provided an alternative to the software I was asking about, and you spoke from a perspective of experience in an enterprise environment (you said it was your clients' machines), which is exactly what my question asked for. Thank you very much!

Souseran: You provided a Microsoft tool, which has the most credibility of all, and a very credible reason why I shouldn't use Regclean (your Barracuda's response). Thanks a lot!
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souseranCommented:
T-Dev,

Glad to help. :-)

souseran
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Kelly_WCommented:
Hello cantoris,
That is where we disagree.  I have seen many left over registry settings, that some call rubbish, bring a client machine or a server to its knees, do a BSOD, or just make the system very slow.
Now some things, like AutoCAD on a system, you have to reinstall the registry settings (yes the newer versions of AutoCAD allow you to do this) but otherwise, as I have said, in the last seven years I have never had one server or PC take a dump on me from a registry cleaner, where I had to reinstall the operating system or format the hard drive.
Thanks,
Kelly W.
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cantorisCommented:
I've seen PCs where a registry cleaner has been used and some apps have been broken by it (eg Office).
I have of course also seen plenty of PCs where leftover registry settings have caused problems themselves - but I remove these manually.  I don't trust an application to know what is safe to remove and what is not.  I'm sure some are better at this than others though...
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