Safe Mode

A specific way for the Windows operating system to load when there is a system-critical problem interfering with the normal operation of Windows. Safe mode allows the user to troubleshoot the operating system to determine what is not functioning properly. For example, adding new software or drivers for a hardware deviceto the system can cause conflicts with existing programs. Safe mode is a way to find out what the problem is.

In safe mode, the only startup programs that are loaded are the operating system and drivers for the mouse, keyboard and standard VGA display modes. Safe mode does not run the autoexec.bat or config.sys files. The main portion of the Registry is not loaded. Himem.sys, which is normally loaded as part of the config.sys script, is loaded with the /testmem:on switch, which tells the computer to test the extended memory before continuing. Windows also boots using a batch file called system.cb instead of the standard system.ini file while in safe mode.

Webopedia Staff
Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Related Articles

Human Resources Management System

A Human Resources Management System (HRMS) is a software application that supports many functions of a company's Human Resources department, including benefits administration, payroll,...

How To Defend Yourself Against Identity Theft

Almost every worldwide government agency responsible for identity theft issues will tell you the same thing: The first step to fighting identity theft is...

Infographic

An infographic is a visual representation of information or data. It combines the words information and graphic and includes a collection of imagery, charts,...

Phishing

What is phishing? Phishing is a type of cybercrime in which victims are contacted by email, telephone, or text message by an attacker posing as...

ScalaHosting

ScalaHosting is a leading managed hosting provider that offers secure, scalable, and affordable...

HRIS

Human resources information system (HRIS) solutions help businesses manage multiple facets of their...

Best Managed Service Providers...

In today's business world, managed services are more critical than ever. They can...