How to place Windows 11 into Safe mode

Built into Windows 11 are a number of useful troubleshooting tools, but perhaps one of the most useful is something called Safe mode. The main aim of Windows Safe Mode, is to place Windows into a basic state where it only uses a limited set of files and drivers.

As Safe Mode is a troubleshooting tool. We can use it to narrow down the source of a Windows problem. For example we can test to see if a Windows issue appears in Safe mode. Then if it does not, as Windows is not using all of its files and drivers. You can either repair the operating system or reinstall a driver.

Quick reference notes:

  1. From the Windows Desktop, click on the Start button and select Settings
  2. In the Settings window, if we choose System and locate Recovery
  3. Next in Recovery, we will find Advanced Startup
  4. By Selecting Restart Now you will place your computer into Advanced Startup
  5. Now select Troublshoot and Advanced options
  6. In Advanced options choose Start-up Settings and select Restart
  7. You will now see a menu of options.
  8. Select 4 on your keyboard to place your computer into Safe mode.

Note: You can also trick Windows 11 into booting into Windows Recovery Environment, which in turn will allow you to access Safe Mode. To do this you need to do the following:

  • Power down your computer.
  • Now from a powered down state, switch on your computer
  • When the manufacturers logo appears. Power off your computer by pressing and holding down the power button.

Note: You might find that you need to press and hold down the power button for 10 seconds in order to force your computer to power down. However, your computer might just power itself down when you press the power button to switch it off.

  • Repeat the same process of powering on and then as the manufacturers logo appears, powering off your computer.
  • On the third cold start simply power on your computer and Windows will load Windows Recovery Environment.
  • You can now navigate through the menu system to find Safe Mode.

Reference materials:

If you have any further questions, feel free to ask.

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