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How To Boot Windows 98 Into Safe Mode

We recommend that you use the System Configuration Utility to get into Safe mode, however, the F8 key can also be used. It would be a good idea to install a free utility like Drive Adviser to check your drive’s physical health before continuing. Many computers fail because their hard drives are not working properly. No amount of Safe Mode will fix that.

To use the System Configuration Utility to start Windows 98/Me in Safe mode

  1. Close all open programs.
  2. Click Start > Run.
  3. In the Run dialog box, type msconfig and then click OK.
  4. On the General tab, click Advanced Windows Me will look a bit different than the picture below.
  5. In the Advanced Troubleshooting Settings dialog box, check Enable Startup Menu, and then click OK.
  6. Click OK again when the System Configuration Utility reappears.
  7. When you are asked to restart the computer, click Yes.
  8. When the Windows 98 (or Me) Startup Menu appears, select Safe Mode and press Enter.

The computer restarts with Windows in Safe mode. (This can take several minutes.) When you are finished working in Safe mode, use the System Configuration Utility to start Windows 98/Me in normal mode.

To use the System Configuration Utility to start Windows Me in normal mode

  1. Finish what you need to do in Safe mode.
  2. In the section “To use the System Configuration Utility to start Windows 98/Me” above, repeat 1-6, but in step 5, uncheck Enable Startup Menu.
  3. Close all programs, and restart the computer.

To use the F8 key to start Windows 98/Me in Safe mode

  1. Restart the computer.
  2. As the computer restarts, press and hold down the F8 key until the Windows 98/Me Startup menu appears.
  3. When the Windows 98 (or Me) Startup Menu appears, select Safe Mode and press Enter.

Windows starts in Safe mode. (This can take several minutes.)

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