What about the idea of an improved registry view inside of components instead of the endless list of registry keys? I have had already a long discussion with Mihai about that, but he declined this idea as well.
I don't understand your point here, because everyone who has to maintain a larger number of keys in his projects is getting some trouble with the current situation. For example, I have to manage over 8.000 registry entries in my project and, surely they are saved not only in one, but into several components. Currently it is hard to get an overview about the keys, for example if some specific keys are missing or some others went to the wrong component. Furthermore it would be nice to filter the registry view by feature and/or by component. Additionally there is the fact, that if you use 32/64-Bit package you may have to add keys to the same location in registry view, but its not possible. You mentioned in http://www.advancedinstaller.com/user-guide/qa-32-64-bit-registry.html
, that AI can not handle duplicate keys or values, "but the "Registry" table inside the MSI supports them"
. So, why not make it possible in registry view as well? I just add the same value to different components, one is 32-Bit, second is a 64-Bit component and on the target system they are installed either to HKLM\Software or HKLM\Software\Wow64 ... so, again, I don't believe, that I am the only one, installing more than a couple of registry keys at all and getting into trouble with the registry keys.
I understand, that there are some design limitations due to Windows Installer rules and best practice recommendations. But still I have to manage those thousands of keys somehow - ANY optimization would be helpful to make the life easier.