Safe mode is a diagnostic operating mode, used mainly to troubleshoot problems affecting normal operation of Windows. Such problems range from conflicting drivers to viruses preventing Windows from starting normally. In Safe Mode only a few applications work and Windows loads just the basic drivers and a minimum of operating system components. This is why most viruses are inactive when using Windows in Safe Mode and they can be easily removed.
How to start in Safe Mode or Safe Mode with Networking in Windows XP/Vista/ 7:
1. Restart the computer.
2. Tap the F8 key several times before Windows starts in order to access the boot menu.
3. Select Safe Mode in the boot menu or Safe Mode with Networking if you want to have Internet access.
4. Press Enter and wait while Windows loads in Safe Mode.
5. This process ends with a confirmation message. Click OK to acknowledge.
6. To start Windows normally, simply reboot the system.
How to start in Safe Mode with Networking in Windows 8/8.1/10
Before you choose one of the methods described here, make sure you know the password you’ve set up on your account (if you’re using a PIN). You cannot use a PIN to log in to your account in Safe Mode. You will have to use the full password.
1. Restart your PC. At the sign-in screen, hold the Shift key down while you select Power, and click Restart.
2. After your PC restarts to the Choose an option screen, select Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings > Restart.
3. After the restart, you’ll see a list of options. Select 5 or F5 for Safe Mode with Networking.
1. Launch System Configuration in Windows by simultaneously pressing the Windows + R keys on your keyboard. Then write msconfig in the text field and press OK.
2. Switch to Boot tab and, in the Boot options section, select the Safe Boot with Network. Then click OK.
NOTE: After you finished your work in Safe Mode, please open System Configuration again (step 1) and uncheck the Safe Boot option (step 2). Click OK and restart your machine. Your computer will now boot normally.
3. Windows will tell you that you need to reboot your computer in order for the new setting to take effect. After the reboot, your computer will automatically boot into Safe Mode.