4 Ways To Enter Windows 10 Safe Mode in 2023

Are you facing issues with your Windows 10 computer and need to troubleshoot problems effectively? Safe Mode is often a useful starting point for resolving various system-related issues. Whether you’re dealing with a stubborn virus, malfunctioning drivers, or other problems, booting into Safe Mode can be a lifesaver. In this guide, we will walk you through four different ways to enter Windows 10 Safe Mode in 2023.

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. Why Safe Mode Matters
  3. Method 1: Using the System Configuration Tool
  4. Method 2: Using the Shift + Restart Option
  5. Method 3: Using the Settings Menu
  6. Method 4: Using a Bootable USB Drive
  7. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
  8. Conclusion


Windows 10, now in its 2023 edition, continues to be one of the most widely used operating systems around the world. While it offers a smooth and user-friendly experience, it’s not immune to hiccups. Software conflicts, driver issues, or malware can sometimes wreak havoc on your PC, making it difficult to diagnose and resolve problems in the regular operating mode.

That’s where Safe Mode comes to the rescue. Safe Mode is a diagnostic startup mode in Windows that allows you to boot the system with a minimal set of drivers and services. This can help you identify and fix the root cause of many issues. In this article, we will explore four distinct methods to enter Safe Mode on your Windows 10 machine in 2023.

Why Safe Mode Matters

Before we dive into the various methods to access Safe Mode, let’s understand why it’s such a valuable tool for troubleshooting:

  1. Isolation: Safe Mode loads only essential drivers and services, eliminating any potential conflicts. This isolation allows you to identify if the issue is caused by a third-party application or driver.
  2. Malware Removal: Safe Mode can be a lifesaver when dealing with stubborn malware or viruses. It prevents malicious software from running, making it easier to remove them.
  3. Driver Problems: If you’re experiencing driver-related issues that prevent Windows from booting normally, Safe Mode can help you address these problems without interference from other software.
  4. System Stability Testing: It’s also a handy mode for testing the stability of your system. If you’re uncertain whether your system issues are hardware or software-related, running in Safe Mode can often provide valuable insights.

Now that we understand the importance of Safe Mode, let’s explore the different ways to access it on Windows 10 in 2023.

Method 1: Using the System Configuration Tool

The System Configuration tool, also known as “msconfig,” is a built-in utility in Windows 10 that provides a simple way to configure system boot options. Here’s how you can use it to access Safe Mode:

  1. Press Windows Key + R to open the Run dialog.
  2. Type “msconfig” and click “OK” or press Enter. This will open the System Configuration window.
  3. In the System Configuration window, navigate to the “Boot” tab.
  4. Under the “Boot options” section, check the “Safe boot” box. You will be presented with three options: “Minimal,” “Alternate shell,” and “Network.” Select “Minimal” for the standard Safe Mode.
  5. Click “OK” to save your changes.
  6. A prompt will appear, asking if you want to restart your computer now or later. Choose “Restart” to boot into Safe Mode immediately.
  7. When your computer restarts, it will boot into Safe Mode.

To exit Safe Mode, simply open the System Configuration tool again and uncheck the “Safe boot” box in the “Boot” tab.

Method 2: Using the Shift + Restart Option

If your Windows 10 system is bootable but you still want to enter Safe Mode, you can use the Shift + Restart method. Here’s how:

  1. Click on the “Start” button or press the Windows key.
  2. Click the “Power” button, but do not restart your computer just yet. Instead, hold down the Shift key on your keyboard.
  3. While holding Shift, click on “Restart”.
  4. Your computer will then restart, and you will be presented with a menu. Choose “Troubleshoot”.
  5. In the Troubleshoot menu, select “Advanced options.”
  6. In the Advanced options menu, click on “Startup Settings.
  7. Finally, click “Restart” to confirm your choice. Your computer will now restart into the Startup Settings menu.
  8. In the Startup Settings menu, you’ll see a list of options. Press the “4” key on your keyboard to enable Safe Mode. If you want Safe Mode with Networking, press “5.”
  9. Your computer will then boot into Safe Mode.

Exiting Safe Mode is as simple as restarting your computer normally from within Safe Mode.

Method 3: Using the Settings Menu

Windows 10 also provides a more straightforward method to access Safe Mode through the Settings menu. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Click on the “Start” button or press the Windows key.
  2. Click on “Settings”, which is represented by a gear-shaped icon.
  3. In the Settings menu, click on “Update & Security.”
  4. In the Update & Security menu, select “Recovery” from the left-hand sidebar.
  5. In the Recovery menu, under the “Advanced startup” section, click “Restart now.”
  6. Your computer will then restart, and you will be presented with a menu. Choose “Troubleshoot.”
  7. Follow the same steps as in Method 2 from here onwards, starting from selecting “Advanced options.”

Method 4: Using a Bootable USB Drive

In case your Windows 10 system is not bootable at all, using a bootable USB drive is a reliable option. Here’s how to access Safe Mode using this method:

  1. Create a bootable USB drive with a Windows 10 installation or recovery image. You can do this on another computer by downloading the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool from the official Microsoft website and following the provided instructions.
  2. Once you have the bootable USB drive ready, insert it into your non-bootable computer.
  3. Boot your computer from the USB drive. You might need to change the boot order in your computer’s BIOS settings to prioritize the USB drive.
  4. When the Windows Setup screen appears, select your language and region preferences and click “Next.”
  5. Click on “Repair your computer” at the bottom left corner.
  6. In the “Choose an option” screen, select “Troubleshoot.”
  7. Follow the steps as described in Method 2 from this point onwards to access Safe Mode.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: What is the difference between “Safe Mode,” “Safe Mode with Networking,” and “Safe Mode with Command Prompt”?

A1: “Safe Mode” loads the basic drivers and services necessary for Windows to run. “Safe Mode with Networking” includes network drivers, allowing you to access the internet and download troubleshooting tools or updates
. “Safe Mode with Command Prompt” is similar to Safe Mode but opens the Command Prompt for advanced users to execute commands.

Q2: How can I tell if my computer is in Safe Mode?

A2: When in Safe Mode, you will usually see the words “Safe Mode” in each corner of the screen. Additionally, the screen resolution may be lower, and your desktop may look different.

Q3: Can I access the internet in Safe Mode?

A3: Yes, you can access the internet in “Safe Mode with Networking.” This mode loads the necessary network drivers, allowing you to connect to the internet.

Q4: Is Safe Mode available in all editions of Windows 10?

A4: Yes, Safe Mode is available in all editions of Windows 10, including Home, Pro, and Enterprise.

Q5: What do I do if Safe Mode doesn’t resolve my issue?

A5: If Safe Mode doesn’t fix the problem, you may need to perform more advanced troubleshooting, such as using System Restore, repairing corrupted system files, or seeking professional help.


In the ever-evolving world of Windows, knowing how to access Safe Mode remains a valuable skill. The ability to troubleshoot and resolve issues with your system is crucial for maintaining a smooth computing experience. The four methods outlined in this guide provide you with different options to access Safe Mode in Windows 10 in 2023, regardless of your system’s state.

Remember that Safe Mode is a powerful tool, but it’s not a silver bullet for all issues. If you find that your problem persists in Safe Mode or if you’re not comfortable troubleshooting on your own, seeking professional help is always a good option. Windows is a complex operating system, and sometimes, the expertise of an IT specialist is needed to get your PC back in tip-top shape.

In the world of computing, knowledge is power. Armed with the ability to access Safe Mode, you’re one step closer to becoming a proficient Windows user, ready to tackle any challenge that comes your way.

So, the next time your Windows 10 system acts up, don’t panic. Instead, follow one of the methods in this guide, enter Safe Mode, and start diagnosing and resolving the issue with confidence.

And remember, when in doubt, it’s always a good idea to back up your important data before making any major changes to your system. Safety first!

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