The Secret Hotkey To Boot Into Hidden Safe Mode In Windows 8

Ever since Microsoft released Windows 8 to the public, users have been complaining about the missing safe mode option in the Windows Boot Manager. If you aren’t familiar with Safe Mode, it’s a troubleshooting mode which starts Windows with minimal set of drivers and services.

The Hidden Safe Mode In Windows 8

In earlier versions of Windows, booting into the safe mode was pretty easy. Pressing F8 key immediately after switching on the PC or pressing F8 key in the boot menu would bring Advanced Boot Options and Safe Mode. But this F8 hotkey doesn’t work in Windows 8.


Windows 8 introduces the all new graphical boot menu with several troubleshoot and advanced options such as Refresh your PC, Reset your PC, System Restore, System Image Recovery, and Automatic Repair.


You might have come across many guides on the Internet that show you how to enable and add the safe mode to Windows 8 Boot Manager using some commands. But the truth is that Microsoft hasn’t removed the Safe Mode to enable it! It’s pretty much exist and all you need to know is how to access it!


So, how to boot into Windows 8 Safe Mode without actually enabling it? Here is our solution:


Turn on your Windows 8 PC and immediately press and hold Shift + F8 keys till use see Advanced Boot Options screen from where you can boot into the Safe Mode. Do note that you need to press and hold the hotkey while the POST is in progress.


You might also like to know how to enable Hibernate option in Windows 8. Don’t forget to check out Start menu program for Windows 8.



  1. LL says

    That’s all fine if you can get to a command prompt, but my issue is that while Windows 8 boots, I cannot do anything once it comes up. The system is “frozen”. I tried the F8, F11, etc….nothing seems to work!

  2. Jeff says

    So I have a “Dept of Justice” ransom virus on my Dell desktop with Windows 8. I’ve gotten so many “Do this or thats” that I’m now totally confused. I wanted to go to safe mode to do a restore. When I restart my CPU F8 doesn’t work when held or tapped. It always comes to my sign in page. I would like to use the command prompt to make F8 work normally during boot but need detailed instructions. I’d aprreciate your help. Or if you have another way to unlock me from the ransom virus thats awesome too.


  3. Megan says


    Here’s a better way:
    Admin Command prompt:
    bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy

    f8 works normally now during boot.

  4. Felipe says

    This is the best post/web on win 8 until now, thanks a lot, i just need to uninstall a bad display driver without doing a refresh!

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