How to Start HP Laptop in Safe Mode

If you’re the kind of person who likes to tweak around your computer’s system settings then there are going to be instances where you can’t simply boot up your computer in the normal way. You will have to take a different approach if you’re looking to experiment with your computer. Apart from this there are other instances where your computer might falter and you’ll need to boot it up differently.

When we talk about booting up differently, we mean to use your laptop in safe mode. Using your laptop in safe mode means you have to tweak some settings in your PC and this can help you troubleshoot any problems that are present in your laptop. This mode helps you narrow down the problem that is going on in your laptop so that is why users prefer to boot their laptop in safe mode.

The reason we shall be talking about an HP laptop is because HP is used by several users around the world and being one of the most popular laptop brands, it is the reason we shall be looking into it.

Safe Mode is a mode that is available in most versions of Windows such as Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP as well as older versions as well.

How to Recognize Safe Mode

When you’re using your laptop in Safe Mode, your desktop background is immediately replaced with a screen that is colored black with the words “Safe Mode” being displayed at all four corners of your screen. The top of the screen also shows the current version of Windows that you’re using as well as the service pack level.

Safe Mode Options

Here are the different options which you are able to access while working in Safe Mode. There are three options that are available on which you’ll decide which option to use. There three different options have different uses which is why you’ll get to decide on the spot which option you are going to opt for.

Normal Safe Mode

The Safe Mode begins with Windows using the least amount of drivers and services that are needed to start your operating system. When you choose Safe Mode, you will not be able to access your Windows screen normally and you can’t use the internet either in this mode. So make sure to keep in mind that you cannot surf the internet while simply using the Safe Mode.

Safe Mode with Networking

Safe Mode with Networking is the option where you Windows boots up using the same set of drivers as those in the Safe Mode with one major difference being that here those drivers are also used that are necessary for network functions. The safe mode with networking allows you to access internet services as well if you want to look for solutions to any particular problem.

This Safe Mode option is usually used when Windows doesn’t start and you think you will need to access the internet in order to download drivers or files which are important for Windows to function. You can also get access to troubleshooting guides from the internet using this way.

Safe Mode with Command Prompt

The third option of Safe Mode is the Safe Mode with Command Prompt which is identical to Safe Mode except the fact that Command Prompt is loaded as the default user interface instead of Explorer. You can choose the Safe Mode with Command Prompt if you’ve tried Safe Mode but some things like the taskbar, start screen, start menu, or Desktop don’t work properly.

Starting HP Laptop in Safe Mode

Here is how you can access your HP laptop in safe mode. We shall be using an HP notebook which uses Windows Vista so make sure to follow each step if you would like to know how you start your laptop in safe mode as well as some other important things in this section.

Using the Safe Mode

Here is how you can use the Safe Mode on your HP laptop.

  • Remove all kinds of CDs and DVDs that are present in your computer
  • Restart your computer

  • On the opening screen or the restart screen before the appearance of the HP or Windows logo, keep pressing the F8 key repeatedly

  • For the next step, when you are prompted, select the Safe Mode with Networking option
  • Finally, you will long on to your computer using a user account which has administrator rights
  • Once you log into a user account using the administrator that is when you will have entered your computer using the Safe Mode the proper way.

Using Safe Mode when PC is Operating

If your computer is able to boot into the operating system of your Windows Vista then follow these steps in order to enter into Safe Mode:

  • Click on Start, type “msconfig” in the search bar and then press enter in order to open the System Configuration Window

  • Then head to the general tab of the System Configuration window and select Diagnostic startup

  • Go to the Boot tab after which you’ll be selecting the Safe Boot and then click on “OK”

  • When you get the prompt this time, click on Restart to start your computer in the Safe Mode. If the computer does not restart automatically then you can press the Power button in order to turn the power of your computer on

  • Once you’re on the Tools of your system configuration then you can select and launch the desired Diagnostic Tool

Exiting the Safe Mode

After you complete the necessary troubleshooting and repair, you can then follow the steps below to exit the Safe Mode and return to normal operation on your HP laptop. To do this, simply follow these two steps given below:

  • Click on Start and then type ‘msconfig’ here as well in the search field. After this, press enter to open the System Configuration window.

  • Once you’re on the General tab of the System Configuration window, select Normal Startup and then click on OK. Your computer is then going to restart in the normal mode.

Different Types of Safe Mode

Safe Mode is usually the mode used when starting a program using its default settings. Even if that program is Windows itself. This Mode is used because it has default settings for the purpose of diagnosing what the real reason could be for causing these problems. This functions a lot like the Safe Mode in Windows.

The usual idea is that when a program is initiated using only its default settings then it’s very likely to start without any kind of issues that is going to further let you troubleshoot what the problem is. What usually happens is that once the program starts without loading custom settings, add-ons, modifications, or extensions of any sort then there are a number of things that can be enabled one after the other.

You can then continue to start the application in Safe Mode in order to find the problem that is being present in your HP laptop because the truth is that problems can occur anywhere and the main thing is to diagnose the problem at hand.

There are other programs as well which make use of the Safe Mode apart from your HP laptop. These include the macOS which uses Safe Boot for the same purpose as Windows, Android, and Linux operating systems. It is activated by holding down the Shift key while powering up your computer.

You will also be able to use the Microsoft Outlook in the safe mode because when you do that, it disables the reading pane, extensions, and a few custom settings so that you can be able to troubleshoot what is preventing your Microsoft Outlook from starting normally. Another emailing client which is known as Thunderbird makes use of the same kind of Safe Mode.

Finally, an example of Safe Mode being used in browsers is when Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome are used in Incognito Mode. The Internet Explorer’s “No Add-ons” mode is accessible with the iexplore-extoff Run command. When you are able to access these browsers in Safe Mode, you can choose the settings of these browsers according to your liking so that’s another good thing for you.


In the above guide, we have told you everything in detail on how you can access the Safe Mode on your HP laptop as well as other important things such as how to access it when your PC is operating and how to exit the Safe Mode. With this comprehensive guide, we hope that you will now know how to access the Safe Mode on your HP laptop because it is something you can learn if you carry it out a few times.

The Safe Mode will help you know the software that functions in your computer as well.

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