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computing: software: programming: Windows: ActiveX: RegSvr32



RegSvr32.exe is the program used to manually register ActiveX DLLs in Windows. It is usually found in c:\windows\system, c:\windows\system32, or other related folders depending on the version of Windows. (It is not used to reg/unreg ActiveX EXEs; see ActiveX.)

Running RegSvr32 with no parameters causes a message box to pop up on the screen listing the available command-line options. The version for Windows 98 shows the following information (with clarifications added):

Usage: regsvr32

  1. REDIRECT Template:fmt/arg/opt [ </s> ] [ <n> ] [ <i[:cmdline]> ] dllname
  • /u – unregister server (i.e. unregister the file dllname as an ActiveX server)
  • /s – silent; display no message boxes
  • /c – console output
  • /i – call dllinstall passing it an optional [ <cmdline> ]; when used with /u, calls dlluninstall
  • /n – do not call DllRegisterServer; this option must be used only with /i

The basic commands, then, are:

  • (path)\regsvr32 dllname
  • (path)\regsvr32 /u dllname

Note: I was not able to get these commands to work with Windows 98, although I used them frequently in Windows 95 (which I don't have currently available for testing), so I may have some detail wrong or there may be some prerequisite about which I have forgotten. Failing this, you can always use RegEdit to remove everything that refers to your ActiveX module – so it's a good idea to be sure that your module has a name unlikely to be part of any other data in the registry. Run RegClean afterwards, to be on the safe side. --Woozle 21:25, 29 January 2007 (EST)

If you are doing a lot of installing or uninstalling of ActiveX modules on a particular system, it is a fairly simple matter to add those actions to your right-click menu :

  • In Windows Explorer, click on the Tools menu
  • Select Folder Options...
  • Select the File Types tab
  • If the "Application" type already exists and is non-editable, you can make it editable by running RegEdit and deleting the key "\\My Computer\HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile\EditFlags". (If the "Application" type does not exist, create it, or look to see if .exe files are handled by a differently-named type. The name of the type will be whatever Explorer shows as the "Type" for .exe files.)
  • Add the action "register", with the command as "(path)\regsvr32.exe %1"
  • Add the action "unregister", with the command as "(path)\regsvr32.exe /u %1"