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Unused file extensions not unused?


redhawk

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Just out of curiosity I ran the latest version of CCleaner today 3.03.1366 on my XP PC.

 

Using the Registry section and "Scan for Issues" it seems to be detected a lot of "unused" file extensions, however I beg to differ.

 

"Unused File Extension" ".3gpp - VLC.3gpp" "HKCR\.3gpp"

"Unused File Extension" ".arj - WinZip" "HKCR\.arj"

"Unused File Extension" ".BAS - BAS_auto_file" "HKCR\.BAS"

etc.

When double clicking on the files containing the above extensions they launch their default assigned application.

 

These extensions are not unassigned so why does Ccleaner state that they are unused??

 

Richard S.

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Yup, always been that way for me too.

That's why I always have that box unchecked.

 

I don't want to try to run .EXE only to find out that it was wiped out because it was an "unused" file extension.

Someone may have mentioned it before, but since this is directly related to the capability to run things, I do think this is the most dangerous part of CCleaner, & should therefore be taken totally out, or at least protect the most basic file extension (such as NEVER allow CCleaner to erase: .EXE, .Com, .Zip, .MSI, etc. Extentions that are naturally installed via windows could be in a protected list, such that once CCleaner found "ununsed" extensions, it would first compare them to a known good list to see if any were on there, & block those from being displayed!)

 

I believe either solution would be great. I detest the thought of not being able to launch Explorer.EXE because CCleaner wiped that extension out (hey, unused, right?)

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Just out of curiosity I ran the latest version of CCleaner today 3.03.1366 on my XP PC.

 

Using the Registry section and "Scan for Issues" it seems to be detected a lot of "unused" file extensions, however I beg to differ.

 

 

When double clicking on the files containing the above extensions they launch their default assigned application.

 

These extensions are not unassigned so why does Ccleaner state that they are unused??

 

Richard S.

Yes. And yes, again. Be very careful. I cannot use the "unused" file extension part of the program. It would destroy many files associated with my (many) applications. I think CCleaner only recognizes some file extensions and so thinks anything not in its database is invalid.

 

Mostly I stay away from the registry cleaner as it has caused me problems. I run the scan. If I know EXACTLY what something is AND that it is safe to get rid of it, MAYBE it gets deleted, and then, ONLY after I have backed up the registry.

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It can also mean the app they're associated to needs to re-associate those file extensions. The biggest problem I've seen is if switching software, lets say "Some Video Player 1" is associated with *.3gpp then you uninstall it and install "Some Video Player 2" a massive registry file association mess can ensue.

 

I've had that happen once before with IrfanView, it was a major headache, and I don't exactly remember just how I got it fixed because in that case re-associating with IrfanView didn't fix it.

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Why do I need to re-associate file extensions when double click opens the application they were designed for??

 

Currently I have a total of 259 unused file extensions but my old copy of a rival cleaning program says I have none.

CCleaner should only be detecting and removing file extensions that cause errors when you run them, but evidently not.

 

A bug perhaps??

 

Richard S.

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Why do I need to re-associate file extensions when double click opens the application they were designed for??

 

They can actually be in two separate places in the registry, where one key just references another.

 

Could also mean that the Value Name displayed in the registry is empty, which could make them look invalid to most registry cleaners, I've seen that before and have manually had to fix them when switching video players.

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Can someone export these keys being found by CCleaner as invalid and PM me so we can evaluate them?

 

Thanks

actually I just ran mine and pretty much it only lists one shot or actual unused things (.old .bak. etc )

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That's why I always have that box unchecked.

 

I don't want to try to run .EXE only to find out that it was wiped out because it was an "unused" file extension.

 

My mileage is totally different.

I always have that checked and never bother with a backup (though I do look first) and it has never hurt me.

 

It often complains about such things as ODS, ODT, etc.

These and many others are file extensions used by my Portable version of Open Office which has NOT registered its use in the registry.

 

After I have purged these entries from the registry I cannot double click a file with that extension and have Windows launch Open Office,

but even if I do not purge I get no such result anyway.

I can still launch Open Office and it can still remember and load the ODS and ODT files because CCleaner was not purging such files, only redundant registry values.

 

I cannot believe that Explorer.EXE would be zapped by CCleaner,

Even if CCleaner did attempt to zap Explorer.exe then it should encounter a natural Windows Protection "File in Use" blockage.

 

I suppose that if a removable device has an application which has registered its use of a particular extension,

then running CCleaner with that device removed would result in that registered key being declared "unused" because the "user" is missing,

and then when the device is reconnected you can double click on a file and the registry will not designate what uses it so it will not load.

Then you simply merge the backup registry file (which I never create if I know I will never need it).

 

For CCleaner to declare that EXE is an unused extension then Windows probably needs an inability to locate the entry point for launching an EXE,

which raises the question how on earth did you even BOOT the computer, and then to launch CCleaner.EXE ! ! !

 

Alan

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  • 2 weeks later...

I just installed the latest CC uodate 3.04.1389 and I have to tell you the "unused extension" feature is way too aggressive. It's wants to clean out ext that I use on a regular basis. Be very wary of what you remove. At the very least back up what you remove just in case. Do use the "exclude function" right click, to stop CC from reading those ext you need. Even better disable the "unused extension" function. The crew at Piriform should really see about making this function less aggressive like before.

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I just installed the latest CC uodate 3.04.1389 and I have to tell you the "unused extension" feature is way too aggressive.

I'm thinking the same. Just untick/disable it in the registry cleaner that way you aren't constantly having to exclude valid entries.

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Be aware that file extensions used by applications on Flash drives etc are UNUSED if the drive is absent.

 

Otherwise I believe this topic is based on groundless fears.

 

I will refer to ZIP extensions as an example. I think my comments apply to any extension.

 

Removing unused ZIP etc. extension :-

1) Will NOT purge all your ZIP archive files - they do not live in the registry you are cleaning.

2) MAY cancel SOME ability for context menu launch of the archiver to open the selected file,

but that should be corrected if you permitted the recommend backup.

 

When an archiver is installed it may associate *.zip, *.rar, and many other extensions to itself.

 

When the archiver is removed the associations should be cancelled, and if that fails then CCleaner will probably take up the slack.

If the first archiver is NOT removed but a second archiver is added then new associations may be formed.

 

Questions :-

 

Is it guaranteed that ZIP (for example) can only ever have a single association in only one single registry hive ?

 

Is it possible that a second archiver may supplant or usurp the first archiver in such a way that the second takes control,

but the registry key/value for the first archiver is not totally purged until CCleaner lends a helping hand.

 

I would expect CCleaner to ignore the "redundant" association whilst the first archiver was installed,

but when the first archiver is finally removed then I would expect CCleaner to find and remove the redundant ZIP associations,

and still leave the system correctly associating ZIP with the usurper archiver.

 

Regards

Alan

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I just downloaded and tried CCleaner v3.04.1389 today, rather unsurprisingly the excessive false positive detection for unused file types still exist in this version too.

 

Are Piriform coders aware of this problem and going to fix it??

 

cc_fp_1.jpg

As you can see CCleaner claims that the registry entry for .3gp2 does not launch any applications (which is my interpretation of unused).

However if you look at Nirsoft FileTypeMan it clearly shows that file type .3gp2 belongs to application VideoLan VLC.

 

Richard S.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I just installed C3.05 and I would have thought that the folks at CC would have dialed backed the aggressiveness of the extension cleaner function based on the many postings of late. Well, they haven't. I would suggest to all CC users that you either disable the file extension cleaner function or add those extensions that you do not want to delete to your exclude list.

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Help - the sky is falling down

or is it ?

 

Has anyone actually tried cleaning one of these unused extensions,

and then found that the relevant application suffers a "failure to launch" until the registry backup has been restored ?

 

I am always cautious about anything new,

but I prefer not to panic and denounce the new as dangerous until I have a specific example of damage.

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I have BAS files (basic text) which I have assigned to be opened by notepad when double clicked on.

CCleaner says BAS files are unused however I know this is total nonsense because they open with notepad.

If CCleaner fixes the problem BAS files no longer open in notepad instead Windows ask which program to open it with.

 

Great fix huh??

 

That's just one example but just image if CCleaner butchers all your file types you might get a lot problems because files won't open with their assigned applications anymore.

 

So my original question still stands: Is MrG / Piriform coders aware of this problem or even consider it a problem, and plan to fix it??

 

Or perhaps someone would try to convince me otherwise that my registry is indeed faulty.

 

Richard S.

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Or perhaps someone would try to convince me otherwise that my registry is indeed faulty.

So many people posting about it including myself would mean you don't have a problem with your registry with file types, so no worries there.

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Help - the sky is falling down

or is it ?

 

Has anyone actually tried cleaning one of these unused extensions,

and then found that the relevant application suffers a "failure to launch" until the registry backup has been restored ?

Yup, curiousity got the better of me so thought I'd see what happened. Was flagging psd extensions as invalid, cleaned it, clicked a psd file and still opened with designated program, so no problem. Clearly this isn't the case for everyone though.

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I have BAS files (basic text) which I have assigned to be opened by notepad when double clicked on.

CCleaner says BAS files are unused however I know this is total nonsense because they open with notepad.

If CCleaner fixes the problem BAS files no longer open in notepad instead Windows ask which program to open it with.

 

Is XP + SP2 still supported ?

Were you fully standard compliant with how you assigned BAS to be opened by notepad ?

 

If you would like the problem fixing I suggest you make and post a TXT copy of the REG backup,

showing exactly what key was removed by CCleaner.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yup, curiousity got the better of me so thought I'd see what happened. Was flagging psd extensions as invalid, cleaned it, clicked a psd file and still opened with designated program, so no problem. Clearly this isn't the case for everyone though.

I am having the same problem with CCleaner 3.05; in my case, the following "unused file extensions" were reported after scanning the Registry:

  • .xpi (used by Firefox 4.0 for extensions)
  • .regtrans-ms (used by Windows 7 for staging Registry changes)

Note that last one (Win7 system file extension), which is for the Registry itself!

 

I am also having a problem that is preventing me from Restoring a CCleaner registry backup: Right-clicking on the cc-blahblsh.reg file does NOT display a "Merge" menu item, and double-clicking on the file just opens it in Notepad. First time I've had the need to restore a registry backup created by CCleaner, and I can't get it to work. I'm running Win7 Ultimate w/SP1.

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If you open Regedit, select file from the top menu and then select import, (and then browse to cc backup) does it work then?

 

 

Have you renamed or altered the cc backup in any way?

 

Are you in an admin account?

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  • 3 weeks later...
Is XP + SP2 still supported ?

Were you fully standard compliant with how you assigned BAS to be opened by notepad ?

 

If you would like the problem fixing I suggest you make and post a TXT copy of the REG backup,

showing exactly what key was removed by CCleaner.

The way file extensions are assigned in the system registry hasn't changed since the time of Windows 95 and NT4.0 therefore the service pack and operating system is irrelevant.

The fact that CCleaner has detected over 250 unused file types which are not unused (TuneUp detects none) it does beg the question what exactly does it detect anyway??

 

After doing some investigation myself I believe I've found the cause of the buggy detection and can only conclude that Piriform are in the wrong over this. :blink:

 

For example if I open a PAS file which hasn't been assigned yet Windows asked for the application to open it with.

Once this has been selected the following keys are created: HKCR\.PAS and HKCR\PAS_auto_file

 

HKCR\.PAS is the entry point for running a .PAS file this contains a default key that refers to PAS_auto_file.

HKCR\PAS_auto_file holds the information regarding how to open the file and which application.

 

cc_reg1.jpg

 

All keys were generated by Windows itself and not manually entered and therefore it should be considered compliant, correct and legitimate however CCleaner states otherwise.

 

So I was wondering, why does CCleaner treat some file types as unused and used, it turns out that it was looking for an addition registry entry string value "Content Type".

To test my theory I added a bogus "Content Type" string to my .PAS key and sure enough CCleaner doesn't show .PAS as being as unused anymore.

CCleaner's detection is currently messed up imo :angry:

 

Richard S.

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It turns out that CCleaner wasn't looking for string value "Content Type" after all, in fact anything set in the registry would be enough to shut it up, like wtf??

 

As a novice programmer myself I'm struggling to understand the logic behind CCleaner detection and the fact no one is taking this seriously.

So I posted a VIDEO today, I automatically added a new file type AAA with the default application of notepad.exe

You can see CCleaner's detection before, after and when I added an extra registry key to this file type.

 

Richard S.

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no one is taking this seriously.

The fact several of us have stopped using the unused file extensions section altogether implies many of us are taking it seriously, but only the developers can give their reasons for ignoring this issue.

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