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How To Enable Windows 8 Safe Mode

Safe Mode is a diagnostic mode which loads a set of drives and processes sufficient to run Windows. It enables users to find the root cause of hardware and software related issues to apply the required fixes. Although Windows 8 includes relatively easy to use, automated system repair utilities like System Refresh and System Restore, along with Automatic System Repair to resolve a wide range of Windows boot issues, it doesn’t include Safe Mode option.

Today, with the release of Microsoft Windows 8 Consumer Preview, we are bringing you extensive coverage of all the new features in Microsoft’s latest operating system. This post is a part of our Windows 8 Week. To learn more, check out our complete coverage of Windows 8 Consumer Preview.

Unlike previous Windows versions, where one can easily enable/disable Safe Mode and other Advance Boot options from System Configuration utility, also called msconfig tool, Windows 8 requires user to manually enable Safe Mode boot option using Boot Configuration Data (BCD) Edit command. For those who are not familiar with BCDEdit, it’s a Windows tool written to store and define boot applications, as well as, boot application settings. The BCDEdit store handles Windows OS Boot.ini file by providing it with system and user specified boot applications and their configurations. In this post, we will guide you through the process of enabling Windows 8 Safe Mode option in Windows 8 Advance Boot Options menu.

The first step involves running Command Line Interpreter as an Administrator. On Start Screen, enable All Apps (right-click in empty area, and then select All apps from bottom of the screen).  Now right-click Command Prompt tile, and select Run as administrator to launch CMD utility with administrative privileges.

Now enter the BCDEdit command as shown in the screenshot below.

bcdedit /enum /v

The command shows you numerous attributes and settings for both Windows Boot Manager and Windows Boot Loader. From Windows Boot Loader section, note down the identifier and description text strings on a text editor. Now enter the following command, as shown in screenshot below.

bcdedit / copy {identifier} /d “<description> (Safe Mode)”

Once the entry is successfully copied, open charms bar using Windows+C hotkey combination and use Start Search to open msconfig.exe, or just move to Start Screen and start typing msconfig.exe to search it from Apps category. Now, press Enter to open System Configuration utility.

Navigate to Boot tab, make sure that Safe Mode is selected, enable Safe boot and underneath Timeout, enable Make all boot settings permanent option. Click OK followed by Restart to reboot your system.

Before Windows starts loading, press F8 key to enter into Advanced Boot Options menu.

Clicking Safe Mode will prepare your system to load into Safe Mode. After a reboot, it will take you directly to Safe Mode main screen.

That’s pretty much it for Windows 8 Safe Mode. Stay tuned for more of our Windows 8 coverage.


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