5 Ways To Boot Into Safe Mode In Windows 8.1

Are you struggling to boot into Safe Mode in Windows 8 or Windows 8.1? Have you tried pressing both F8 and Shift+F8 and they don't work? That's because a lot has changed with the boot procedure in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. The boot has become so fast that it literally cannot be interrupted by any of your keypresses. Here are 5 ways in which you can boot into Safe Mode, that don't involve any special hacks or manual configuration.

Safe Mode in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1

Safe Mode in Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 is not too different from the Safe Mode found in earlier versions of Windows.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

The operating system still loads only the most basic drivers and services, so that it can display a minimal useful interface. The only important difference is that the minimum screen resolution used by Safe Mode has risen from 800x600 pixels to 1024x768 pixels.

1. Use the System Configuration Tool (msconfig.exe) - works in Windows 8 & 8.1

The easiest method for booting into Safe Mode is to use the System Configuration tool, also known as msconfig.exe.

Go to the Boot tab and, in the Boot options section check the box that says "Safe boot". Then, click or tap OK.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

You are informed that you need to restart your computer. Click Restart or Exit without restart depending on whether you want to restart now or later.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

At the next restart, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 start in Safe Mode.

2. Use Shift + Restart - works in Windows 8 & 8.1

Another method is to press the Power button at the Windows login screen or in the Settings charm. Then, press and hold the SHIFT key on your keyboard and click Restart.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

Windows asks you to choose an option. Press Troubleshoot.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

In the Troubleshoot screen, press Advanced options.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

In the Advanced options screen, press Startup Settings.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

You are informed that you are about to restart in order to change several Windows options, including enabling Safe Mode. Press Restart.

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

Your computer or device restarts again and displays nine startup settings, including Safe Mode, Safe Mode with Networking and Safe Mode with Command Prompt

Safe Mode, Boot, Windows 8, Start

Press the F4 key on your keyboard, to enable Safe Mode, F5 to enable Safe Mode with Networking and F6 to enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt. Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 now boot according to the setting you selected.

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About the Author: Ciprian Adrian Rusen
I love technology and I work in IT for more than a decade. I am the co-founder of Digital Citizen and its chief editor. Alongside my work as an editor, I am also an author. I have written and published 7 books, most of them about Microsoft products and technologies. They are translated into more than 12 languages. In 2014, I have been recognized by Microsoft for my technical expertise and involvement in the community with the title of Microsoft MVP - Windows Consumer Expert.