Windows 10 Safe mode

Starting your computer in Safe Mode is a handy way to diagnose common issues with your PC, including the blue screen of death, hardware driver issues and remove unwanted malware and apps that pose a risk to your security. There are many ways to enter Safe Mode in Windows 10, whether you’re booting up or restarting the system. In this article we will discuss the different ways you can boot your computer into safe mode starting with the traditional way of using the F8 key during boot up.

Previous versions of Windows such as Windows 7, It was easy to boot into safe mode. At the beginning of the boot process al you had to do was press the F8 key to access the Advanced Boot Options menu, where you can enable Safe Mode. But on Windows 10, the F8 key seems to not work any more. No matter how many times you press the F8 key the advanced boot option will not appear.

Well, the F8 key is actually still available to access the Advanced Boot Options menu on Windows 10 but this feature is not activated by default. In order for Windows to have a faster boot time, Microsoft has disabled this feature. If you want to use the F8 key to access the Safe Mode, you need to enable the feature manually. Here’s how to do it.

Option 1. How to boot into Safe Mode using the F8 key 

F8 boot menu feature is disabled on Windows 10 by default. The good news is you can get it work again with the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) Edit command. BCD Edit is a tool written to control how the operating system is started. You can use it to enable F8 boot menu easily. Just follow these steps:

1) On your keyboard, press Windows logo key and R key at the same time to invoke the run command.

2) Type cmd then press Ctrl+Shift+Enter to open an administrator command prompt. (Don’t just press Enter or click OK as that won’t open the command prompt in an administrator mode.)


3) Copy the following command and paste it in the Command Prompt. Then on your keyboard, press the Enter key.

bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy


4) Reboot your PC. Before the Windows logo appears, press F8 to access the Boot Options menu (see below screenshot). Then select Safe Mode.

safe mode

Note: You can get F8 work again only when you’re able to access Windows. If you can’t start Windows normally, you need to use other effective way. 

Option 2. Change boot configuration options

If F8 or Shift + F8 doesn’t work, follow the alternative instructions below:

  1. Boot into Windows
  2. Press the Windows and R keys to open Run
  3. Type msconfig
  4. Click the Boot Tab
  5. At the Boot options section, check the Safe Boot checkbox and the Minimal checkbox
  6. Click OK
  7. Restart the computer. If prompted by the System Configuration window, click Restart – not Exit without Restart.Boot options menu in Windows

Option 3. Using the Shift and Restart keys at the login window

Another method is the combination of Shift and Restart keys at the login window:

  1. Boot into Windows until the login screen appears, but do not login as a user. If you don’t have a login screen showing, boot into the system and click on Settings
  2. Press the Power button
  3. While holding the Shift key, click Restart
  4. At the Choose an option screen, select Troubleshoot
  5. Select Advanced options
  6. Select Startup Settings
  7. Click Restart
  8. Your computer may restart and open the Startup Settings screen automatically
  9. Press the F4 key to boot into Safe Mode. For the other 2 options of Safe Mode, press F5 to boot into Safe Mode with Networking or press F6 to boot into Safe Mode with Command Prompt

Option 4. Boot to safe mode using Windows 10 installation media

It is also possible to use the installation CD/DVD to boot into Safe Mode:

  1. Insert the disc in the optical drive
  2. Reboot the system
  3. Press any key to boot from the CD/DVD
  4. Choose a keyboard layout
  5. Click Repair your computer
Windows 10 safe mode
  1. Click Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings
  2. Click Restart
  3. The computer should restart with the Startup Settings screen automatically
  4. Press F4 to boot into Safe Mode. Press F5 to boot into Safe Mode with Networking. Press F6 to boot into Safe Mode with Command Prompt.

4 thought on “How to Boot to Safe Mode in Windows 10”
  1. […] If you are receiving the  “BAD_POOL_CALLER” blue screen error, there’s a certainty that your machine will not boot normally. There is a good chance your machine will still boot into safe mode to allow you to perform some of the troubleshooting steps that I have outlined below. To boot Windows into safe mode you simply visit my article – How to boot to safe mode in Windows 10 […]

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