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Safe mode

Safe mode

(also safe browsing mode)

Safe mode definition

Safe mode is a diagnostic operating mode in devices and software designed to help users troubleshoot and resolve issues by running only the essential system components. When a device is started in safe mode, it loads a minimal set of drivers, services, and programs and excludes non-essential software or drivers that may be causing problems.

Safe mode examples

  • Device safe mode: A diagnostic mode on computers, smartphones, and other devices that loads only the essential system components, making it easier to identify and fix problems.
  • Browser safe mode: A feature in web browsers that disables extensions, clears browsing data, enables cache-free browsing, and removes cookies and browsing history once the browsing session ends.

Safe mode pros and cons


  • Isolates issues by running only essential system components.
  • Provides a safer browsing environment by blocking malicious software and online trackers.
  • Helps in identifying problematic extensions or settings.


  • Limited functionality because many features and extensions are disabled.
  • May not protect against all threats because some advanced malware can bypass safe mode.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security