How to enable the F8 key to enter Windows 8 or 10 in Safe Mode.

Last updated on January 30th, 2017

Windows 8 were designed with a new boot loader that allows the OS to load faster. To accomplish this, Microsoft has removed the ability to access the Advanced options menu when you press the F8 key at Windows start-up. This means that you cannot enter the advanced options menu in order to start Windows into "Safe Mode", "Safe Mode with Networking", "Safe Mode with command prompt", etc. before Windows 8 OS has completely loaded.  But, from our experience, the opportunity to enter Advanced Options menu is very useful in many cases when a computer does not work properly.

For example, if a corrupted driver or a program prevents Windows from loading correctly, or if a computer is infected from virus, the ability to load Windows in Safe Mode is very effective to troubleshoot hardware or software problems or to disinfect an infected computer from viruses or malicious programs.

In this tutorial, I will show you how to enable the "F8" key function in order to access the Advanced options menu before Windows 8 load. Keep in mind that by doing this, the loading time of Windows will be increased by some seconds, but in my opinion, this is worth it, because it is more important to be able to troubleshoot or disinfect you computer easier and of course more quickly.

How to enable F8 key to access Advanced Options menu in Windows 10, 8.1, 8 OS.

Step 1: Run "command prompt" with Administrative privileges.

To run Command Prompt in administrative mode in Windows 8 operating system:

1. Right-click at the screen's bottom-left corner and from the pop-up menu, choose "Command Prompt (Admin)".

enable f8 windows 10

2. Choose "Yes" at User Account Control" warning message:



Step 2: Enable the F8 Key.

1. Inside the command prompt window, type the following command and press "Enter":

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy  


After that you should see a message that says that "The operation completed successfully".


2. Now restart your computer for the changes to take effect and from now on, you should be able to enter into Advanced options menu by using the F8 key.

Notice: In the case that you want to disable the F8 key just perform the same operation, but this time at the command prompt window type:

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy standard



That's it.

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