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  • Safe mode access – password problem solved

    Posted on WSthegreenalien Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support Windows Windows 10 Safe mode access – password problem solved


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      • #2264579 Reply
        AskWoody Lounger

        If you use Windows 10, here’s something that might come along and bite you in the future. Forewarned is forearmed, so here we go:
        No doubt you know about Safe mode – sometimes you need to boot into it to roll back some software install that has stopped your computer from working properly, or to carry out some other procedure. Time was, you booted into it by holding F10 while restarting. Not any more – You now need to hold down the Shift key while clicking on Restart, then choose Troubleshooting, then choose Start up Settings, then Restart. So far so good, you will then get a menu, pressing 4 or F4 gets you into Safe mode. If it lets you in, no problem, you can ignore the rest of this.
        However, it may ask for a password before granting access, and this is the potential problem. Firstly, you may use a pin number to sign in with – but that doesn’t work here. You may then try your Microsoft account password – but that doesn’t work either!
        The problem is this – Windows now has 2 passwords – your Microsoft account password, and a local password. Standard windows installation and setup procedure stupidly only requires you to use the Microsoft account password, but Safe mode login requires the local account password, which you may have never set up.
        You can easily sort this out – go into Settings, choose Accounts, then ‘Sign in with a local account instead’. Enter your pin to gain access, then set up your new local password – maybe make it the same as your Microsoft account password – (or you can leave it blank, in which case your computer won’t need a pin or password to gain entry, so probably not a good idea). Anyhow, you should now be able to access safe mode as required.
        Please share this as it doesn’t seem to be widely known!

      • #2264587 Reply
        AskWoody Plus

        “Standard windows installation and setup procedure stupidly only requires you to use the Microsoft account password, but Safe mode login requires the local account password, which you may have never set up.”
        I had to put that to the test.
        I sign in and use my Microsoft account most of the time.
        I also have a local admin account which I use occasionally.

        I went into Safe Mode and my Microsoft account password worked.
        — Are you saying it shouldn’t have worked?
        I did not have to use the local account password.

        On the “stupidly”, please don’t include that.
        — I hear that all the time, mostly in the form of “the stupid computer”
        — Naturally there are times I wish something isn’t working the way I’d prefer, but we have to go with the flow: when we want to do something differently that’s OK when we know we can use an alternate method to accomplish the way we prefer to do whatever applies to us.

        During the week before Patch Tuesday I create a system image back with an additional data backup. Please consider a similar plan that suits your schedule.
        HP EliteBook 8540w laptop Windows 10 Pro (x64)

      • #2264629 Reply
        AskWoody Plus

        The fact that a PIN doesn’t work for signing in to safe mode has caught out many people when they discover they’ve forgotten their password, because they’ve only used the PIN for a long time.

        If you set safe mode to start through msconfig, there’s no way to cancel it without the password.

        That’s why PIN sign in to safe mode is #1 in my top ten list of version 2004 improvements:

        PIN Sign in to Safe Mode
        Calculator always on top
        Virtual desktop renaming
        Reset with cloud download
        Restart apps automatically
        Event creation from taskbar
        Easier notification settings
        Improved network status page
        Colored text cursor indicator
        Passwordless Microsoft account

        Windows 10 Pro Version 2004: Group ASAP (Pioneer/Chump)

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