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Create Invisible Registry Entries in Windows Print E-mail
User Rating: / 16
Written by Blanka   
Saturday, 10 March 2007


I came across this neat trick while developing an application that needed to have invisible registry entries. This trick is suitable for software developers, who need to make sure the registry keys and values remain what they set them to and the keys aren’t being messed with.

Nowadays, everyone has access to the registry editor and can modify, delete or add registry keys. This is a great thing, as long as you know how and which registry values need to be modified. Creating an invisible registry key gives you the guarantee that your keys will remain what you set them, and the applications you develop won’t encounter any problems in reading wrong data. If you want to create an invisible registry folder, this is the solution for you!


The trick lies in a Windows flaw, a flaw regularly exploited by malicious applications (virus, spyware) to hide their traces. The flaw (trick) is that a registry value name can only have the length of 255, if a name longer than 255 characters is given to a registry value, windows will think the end of the key has been reached and all values in that key will be hidden from view. You can see them only with special software designed for this purpose.


What is the difference between a key and a value? The most comprehensive comparison is that a registry key is a folder (shown in the left panel of the registry editor) and a value is a file (shown in the right panel). All values belong to a key, as all files belong to a folder.


Start the Registry Editor (Start->Run, type “regedit”), and create a new registry key. You can create this key anywhere. The name of my registry key is Sample.




In the new key, create a new value of any type (string, binary, DWORD). The name of this value has to exceed 255 characters. I will name the new value 01234567890123456789… (26 times 0123456789)



Now, close the registry editor and restart it. You will see that the 01234… value is gone. It isn’t actually gone, it is just invisible. If you create new values in this key, and restart the registry editor, you will find that all values are missing. But they aren’t actually missing, they are just hidden.


Once you applied this trick to a registry key, all values created in the key afterwards, will be hidden.

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Comments (4)
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1. 31-07-2009 16:08
can anybody creat a key for Atomic Email Hunter 5.44 ??!! 
Thanks alot
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2. 12-06-2007 03:24
It helps a lot
This is exactly what I was looking for, thank you.
3. 12-06-2007 01:10
Seeing the key
Hi there... try the command "reg query HKLM\Software" it will list the hidden key change the path to whereyou created the key. Hope this helps!!
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4. 11-06-2007 10:15
how can I get the invisible key back the

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Last Updated ( Sunday, 25 March 2007 )
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