Trying to Understand REGSVR32

Posted on 2009-05-18
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-07
I've used regsvr32 in the past, but I really haven't understood what it does.  As I understand them, DLLs (and OCXs) are customarily designed for specific applications, but when I run regsvr32, I'm not referencing a specific application.  When I run regsvr32, am I registering a DLL required by Windows?  iexplore.exe?  explorer.exe?  
Question by:jdana

Assisted Solution

TG_Tech earned 168 total points
ID: 24412848
It reregister DLLs in the Windows Registry with Regsvr32.

I run the command with a switch and an argument ... Specifying a DLL

Regsvr32.exe usage

RegSvr32.exe has the following command-line options:
Regsvr32 [/u] [/n] [/i[:cmdline]] dllname

/u - Unregister server
/i - Call DllInstall passing it an optional [cmdline]; when used with /u calls dll uninstall
/n - do not call DllRegisterServer; this option must be used with /i
/s  Silent; display no message boxes (added with Windows XP and Windows Vista)

Source --> http://support.microsoft.com/kb/249873
LVL 11

Accepted Solution

pcfreaker earned 172 total points
ID: 24412853

Indeed you are right, it can be used for both purposes you mention, take a look a this article for you will get a better overview of its options:


Any doubts let me know.

LVL 47

Assisted Solution

rpggamergirl earned 168 total points
ID: 24413262

You use regsvr32 to register and unregister DLLs and OCX.
Regsvr32 will load the specified object and then calls the function UnRegisterServer() in the dll file(if you are unregistering a dll)...or calls the function DllRegisterServer(if you're registering a dll file)
And you can use Regsvr32 not only for files use by Windows(iexplore.exe or explorer.exe) but it can also be called for normal programs.
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LVL 50

Assisted Solution

jcimarron earned 164 total points
ID: 24414075
jdana--When you register a .dll or .ocx file, you are loading it into memory so it can do its job.  That should happen automatically, but sometimes it does not.
LVL 17

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by:Shanmuga Sundaram
Shanmuga Sundaram earned 328 total points
ID: 24414244
regsvr32.exe is a process belonging to the Windows OS and is used to register dynamic-link libraries and ActiveX controls in the registry. This program is important for the stable and secure running of your computer and should not be terminated. You can use the Regsvr32 tool (Regsvr32.exe) to register and unregister object linking and embedding (OLE) controls such as dynamic-link library (DLL) or ActiveX Controls (OCX) files that are self-registerable. This may be necessary to troubleshoot some issues with Windows, Microsoft Internet Explorer, or other programs. Additional information can be found in

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by:Shanmuga Sundaram
Shanmuga Sundaram earned 328 total points
ID: 24414270

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31582622
Thanks for some terrific responses.

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