How to export/import PuTTy sessions list?


Is there a way to do this?

Or I have to take manually every record from Registry?

8/9/2018 11:22:45 AM

Accepted Answer


cmd.exe, require elevated prompt:

Only sessions:

regedit /e "%USERPROFILE%\Desktop\putty-sessions.reg" HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SimonTatham\PuTTY\Sessions

All settings:

regedit /e "%USERPROFILE%\Desktop\putty.reg" HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SimonTatham


Only sessions:

reg export HKCU\Software\SimonTatham\PuTTY\Sessions ([Environment]::GetFolderPath("Desktop") + "\putty-sessions.reg")

All settings:

reg export HKCU\Software\SimonTatham ([Environment]::GetFolderPath("Desktop") + "\putty.reg")


Double-click on the *.reg file and accept the import.

Alternative ways:

cmd.exe, require elevated command prompt:

regedit /i putty-sessions.reg
regedit /i putty.reg


reg import putty-sessions.reg
reg import putty.reg

Note: do not replace SimonTatham with your username.

Note: It will create a reg file on the Desktop of the current user.

Note: It will not export related SSH keys.

5/17/2017 4:47:12 PM

When I tried the other solutions I got this error:

Registry editing has been disabled by your administrator.

Phooey to that, I say!

I put together the below powershell scripts for exporting and importing PuTTY settings. The exported file is a windows .reg file and will import cleanly if you have permission, otherwise use import.ps1 to load it.

Warning: messing with the registry like this is a Bad Idea™, and I don't really know what I'm doing. Use the below scripts at your own risk, and be prepared to have your IT department re-image your machine and ask you uncomfortable questions about what you were doing.

On the source machine:


On the target machine:

.\import.ps1 > cmd.ps1
# Examine cmd.ps1 to ensure it doesn't do anything nasty


# All settings
$registry_path = "HKCU:\Software\SimonTatham"
# Only sessions
#$registry_path = "HKCU:\Software\SimonTatham\PuTTY\Sessions"
$output_file = "putty.reg"

$registry = ls "$registry_path" -Recurse

"Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00" | Out-File putty.reg
"" | Out-File putty.reg -Append

foreach ($reg in $registry) {
  "[$reg]" | Out-File putty.reg -Append
  foreach ($prop in $ {
    $propval = $reg.GetValue($prop)
    if ("".GetType().Equals($propval.GetType())) {
      '"' + "$prop" + '"' + "=" + '"' + "$propval" + '"' | Out-File putty.reg -Append
    } elseif ($propval -is [int]) {
      $hex = "{0:x8}" -f $propval
      '"' + "$prop" + '"' + "=dword:" + $hex | Out-File putty.reg -Append
  "" | Out-File putty.reg -Append


$input_file = "putty.reg"

$content = Get-Content "$input_file"

"cd HKCU:\"

foreach ($line in $content) { 
  If ($line.StartsWith("Windows Registry Editor")) {
    # Ignore the header
  } ElseIf ($line.startswith("[")) {
    $section = $line.Trim().Trim('[', ']')
    'New-Item -Path "' + $section + '" -Force' | %{ $_ -replace 'HKEY_CURRENT_USER\\', '' }
  } ElseIf ($line.startswith('"')) {
    $linesplit = $line.split('=', 2)
    $key = $linesplit[0].Trim('"')
    if ($linesplit[1].StartsWith('"')) {
      $value = $linesplit[1].Trim().Trim('"')
    } ElseIf ($linesplit[1].StartsWith('dword:')) {
      $value = [Int32]('0x' + $linesplit[1].Trim().Split(':', 2)[1])
      'New-ItemProperty "' + $section + '" "' + $key + '" -PropertyType dword -Force' | %{ $_ -replace 'HKEY_CURRENT_USER\\', '' }
    } Else {
      Write-Host "Error: unknown property type: $linesplit[1]"
    'Set-ItemProperty -Path "' + $section + '" -Name "' + $key + '" -Value "' + $value + '"' | %{ $_ -replace 'HKEY_CURRENT_USER\\', '' }


Apologies for the non-idiomatic code, I'm not very familiar with Powershell. Improvements are welcome!


  1. Launch Run, then type in the Open drop down window: regedit

  2. Navigate to, just like in Window's Explorer:

  3. Right click on 'SimonTatham' key (directory icon), select Export
    Give the file a name (say) putty.reg and save it to your location for
    later use.
  4. Close Registry Editor.



If You want to import settings on PuTTY Portable You can use the putty.reg file.

Just put it to this path [path_to_Your_portable_apps]PuTTYPortable\Data\settings\putty.reg. Program will import it


For those of you who need to import Putty from offline registry file e.g. when you are recovering from crashed system or simply moving to a new machine and grabbing data off that old drive there is one more solution worth mentioning:

This great and free console application will export the entire registry or only a specific registry key. In my case i simply copied the registry file from an old drive to the same directory as the exporter tool and then i used following command and syntax in CMD window run as administrator:

RegFileExport.exe NTUSER.DAT putty.reg "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SimonTatham"

After importing the .reg file and starting Putty everything was there. Simple and efficient.


For those who don't want to mess with the registry, a variation of putty that saves to file has been created. It is located here:

It would be nice if the putty team would take this as an option into the main distribution.