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XP: Add the Option to Boot to Safe Mode in the Boot Loader Menu

Do you often find yourself needing to boot to Safe Mode in order to debug your system? Here is how to add this step to your Boot menu.

Booting into Safe Mode is supposed to be simple. This tech-recipe describing ways to boot into Safe Mode provides a detailed explanation of the process.

However, if you use Safe Mode frequently, why not just make it an option on your Boot loader menu? Follow these steps to make this possible:

    1. Right-click on the My Computer icon.
    2. Select Properties from the Context menu.
    3. Click the Advanced tab.
    4. Click the Settings button.
    5. Click the Edit button.
    6. Your boot.ini file will open in Notepad.
    7. Click the File menu.
    8. Select Save as , and save this file as boot_ini.bak.
    9. Under [Operating Systems], find your default OS entry. Highlight this entry, and right-click on it. Select Copy from the Context menu.
    10. Place the cursor on the next line, right-click, and select Paste from the context menu.
    11. Change the description in quotation marks to “Safe Mode Boot”
    12. At the end of this line add the following text:
    safemode:minimal /sos /bootlog

    13. When you reboot, the Safe Mode boot option will appear in the Boot loader menu.
    14. If you do not like this or get errors, remember that your original boot.ini file is saved in the boot_ini.bak file.

David Kirk
David Kirk
David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.


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