How to add Safe Mode to boot menu in Windows 10

Windows’ safe mode, also called “troubleshoot mode” or “advanced startup,” is a boot mode that only runs the most basic controllers and services, which is useful to find and solve any OS problems that are not solvable during a normal startup.

This is very useful (and sometimes essential) when there are problems loading the OS’ full version, blue screens of death, virus, problems with apps, undeletable files and so on.

Up until Windows 7, running Windows’ Safe Mode was as easy as pressing “F8” before the system’s startup. From Windows 8 onward, doing that got more difficult. Now there is no time to interrupt the boot process given that SSDs are used as storage units and that newer UEFI are faster.

A few months ago, we provided you a special with different ways of running Windows’ Safe Mode. Today we will see a more straightforward route by adding Safe Mode to the boot menu in Windows 10, making it easier to run it. It works the same on Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

Add options with the Command Prompt

The first step is to create a boot entry that copies the OS’ existing boot entry. When Windows is installed, a standard boot entry, which is created by default, is loaded every time the PC is turned on. If that boot entry is the only one, the system will load automatically. If there are several boot entries (like when we install other Windows OS), a menu with different boot options will be shown.

To add Safe Mode options, we need the Command Prompt:

  • Right-click the Start menu button or press “Windows + X” to run Command Prompt (Admin).

  • Copy and paste the following command and hit Enter: bcdedit /copy {current} /d “Windows 10 Safe Mode” (you can use the name you want inside the quotation marks, and it will be the one you see in the boot menu). 
  • Additionally, you can create other Safe Mode entries by using the same command. You can create one to run Safe Mode with a Command Prompt (instead of loading the GUI), for example. We added another entry to prove it: bcdedit /copy {current} /d “Prueba Modo Seguro MuyComputer”.

Configure Windows 10’s Safe Mode options

Up until now, we have only created entries for the boot menu, but they will not work if you do not configure them. To do that, we will use the System Configuration tool.

  • Right-click the Start menu button or press “Windows + R” to open Run. Type msconfig.

  • Go to the Boot tab and, as you see, the two new entries created in the previous step are now available along with default entry, which was created when Windows was installed.

  • Click the one created for Safe Mode and configure it according to your needs. In this case, we mark the “Safe boot” option and “Minimal”, and then we mark the “Make all boot settings permanent” option.

  • Click the second entry that was added and configure it the same way. We can configure it with alternate shell, with Networking support or with the options you choose.

  • System Configuration also lets you set up the “Timeout” value for the system to boot, set the default entry that will typically be created during the OS installation or go into the advanced options where we can assign the number of processors or the amount of maximum memory.

  • If you do not need them afterwards, you can delete any created entry by selecting them and clicking the Delete button.

Boot menu

Once all the entries are configured, we just have to accept the changes and receive the expected warning.

To check what we have done, we just have to restart the system. You will see that the system shows us a boot menu where we can choose any of the three entries, change their default values or choose other options.

To avoid wasting time, you can simply set a timeout of a few seconds and the entry created during the Windows installation as the default one. By doing this, the system will always load by default without having to select an entry, but we will always have an easy access to these other boot options like Safe Mode when we need them.