What Can It Do?
Some possible advantages of cleaning the registry can vary heavily. For example, a system with a very bloated registry may find some marginal performance gains when it is cleaned, as the system no longer searches for useless registry items. This can also solve some issues with the system believing programs are still installed when they are not. Further more, the function of a registry cleaner allows for the user to simply ‘fire and forget’, as the system automatically searches out useless files based on a criteria of whether they are redundant, duplicates, broken, empty, etc. This increases user productivity, as having to manually sort the registry would take an inordinate amount of time.
Should any changes be made that caused system errors or break programs, many, if not all, cleaners come with a back up and restore function to revert back to a previous state. Such computers that may require frequent cleaning would be one that has many programs installed and uninstalled frequently.
What Can It Not Do?
The cleaners cannot tell you the after-effects of what it removes. For example, if the user incorrectly removes a system-critical file, the cleaner couldn’t warn you that it may require a full reinstall of the operating system to fix the error. Also, some restore systems cannot fully back up the system, leaving even more registry problems.
Performance gains may only be noticed on system with exceptional registry bloating, where the system needs to load up numerous registries where they are not needed. Even so, performance gains are still marginal for more modern computers.
For the average user, registry cleaners are not part of their daily routine and with good reason. The registry tends to have little effect on the user’s usage of the computer. Possibly after years, it might be necessary to clean the system, but it might be easier to give the computer a fresh install, as the results would be more noticeable. When looking for a registry cleaner, it is advisable to look for a freeware cleaner as they will perform just as well as a paid one, but with the superior price of nothing. On the other hand, if you need to repair the registry and need a helping hand, the cleaner will identify the most common problems plaguing the system, aiding the user in the cleansing.