Delete stubborn impossible registry key! Solution / Fix

Trying to delete a stubborn registry entry, i finally found this solution:

It´s really powerful so must be used with a great amount of caution. It deleted the stubborn key instantly.

Under Administrator execution of the Command prompt, enter: psexec -s -i regedit

This will run regedit from the System account.

psexec can be found at:

psexec’s normal use is to remotely interface other systems but it just happens to be able to run things like regedit from the System account.

Disclaimer: If you don’t know how to do this, should you really be poking around in the registry with full access rights? If you think so, look at this post for step by step instructions:


12 thoughts on “Delete stubborn impossible registry key! Solution / Fix

  1. OMFG THANKS SOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH. I spent hours trying bullshit like regassassin and shit.

    THANKS x100000

  2. one of its kind help tip on the net .
    had some stubborn Norton registry entries left behind from an uninstall , and which was making installation of any other set up a failure .
    tried every thing , nothing worked .
    your trick nailed the bastards . 😉
    good job mate and thanks for the tip .. 🙂

  3. I’m not the most computer savvy person. Can you explain how I use this program?I DL the program you told me to but now I’m totally lost. Thanx,Mike

  4. BULLCRAP!!! Does NOT work!!! “”psexec” is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file”

  5. That error message just means that Windows cannot find the psexec.exe file. I did not really explain as a precaution, if you don’t know how to run an exe from the command-prompt you probably should not poke around in the registry. 😉

    1. Copy the psexec.exe to your desktop.
    2. In the start menu type CMD and then press CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER (to start as admin). You should be in your user folder.
    3. Type: cd Desktop and press enter.
    4. You are now in your dekstop folder and the command prompt should be able to find psexec.exe.
    5. Run the command from here, type: psexec -s -i regedit

    Still Bullcrap? (Unfortunately the above poster’s fake e-mail address might make him miss my answer 😉 )

  6. It’s been 2 years… I hope someone is still watching this thread. 🙂

    I just downloaded and ran psexec as directed (Shift/Control/Enter for CMD)

    The UAC warning popped up, I clicked allow.

    Then I typed psexec -s -i regedit into the CMD window. Regedit opened, and I navigated to the “locked” key. I is still telling me I don’t have permission. I’m already logged in as administrator.

    The issue is a botched AVG install/uninstall, where it cannot write to it’s own key, so I thought I’d try deleting the key. No go.
    This is a WIN7 machine.

    I’ll keep Googling, because I need to get this working fairly soon.



  7. UPDATE: I didn’t even need to use psexec! I just started in SAFE MODE, launched CMD (with Ctrl/Shift/Enter) and typed REGEDIT. I was then able to delete the “locked” key! 🙂

  8. Followed instructions. Got into registry with psexec -s -i regedit.
    Troublesome key still wouldn’t delete.

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