Quote: Originally Posted by Alpha90
the registery is a great single point of failure
Nope. While the Registry may look like a single database it is in fact split into multiple databases. It is also harden against and repairable from corruption as long as the part that is corrupted is not system critical. The same applies to configurations on *nix systems. Corrupting system critical configuration on *nix can cause it to kernel panic (known as a BSoD on the Windows side.)
Sadly, people contribute a lot of problems to the Registry when the Registry has nothing do to with the problem in the first place. Oh and for the record, Windows 7 uses no INI files for its configuration. The INI files that exist on the system are for backwards compatibility with old applications. Windows itself does not use them. AppData and ProgramData do not store just configuration but other data that is not suited for the Registry, plus not all applications use the Registry anyways.
For Windows and Microsoft applications almost all configuration is stored in the Registry, very few places otherwise you will find loose configuration files.