How to Locate the HKEY

By Ryan Casima

The HKEY is a handle to a registry key that leads to other folders within the Windows registry. The HKEY can also be called the top of the hive in the Windows registry. According to Microsoft, "a hive is a logical group of keys, subkeys and values in the registry that has a set of supporting files containing backups of its data." All the hives in the registry, therefore, begin with "HKEY." Locating the HKEY is simple.

Step 1

Press the "Ctrl," "Shift" and "Esc" keys simultaneously to launch the Task Manager.

Step 2

Open the "File" menu and select "New Task (Run...)."

Step 3

Type "regedit" into the box that appears and click "OK." This launches the Registry Editor. You will see all of the HKEY keys in the window.