How to Start a Dell Inspiron in Safe Mode

The Dell Inspiron line of laptop computers features Microsoft's Windows operating system. Besides the suite of support utilities Dell bundles with every Inspiron, Windows also includes Safe Mode, a troubleshooting environment that lets you solve operating system issues.

Reboot your Inspiron in Safe Mode to fix boot problem, driver errors and to remove malware. The process for accessing Safe Mode varies slightly, depending on whether your Inspiron includes Windows XP, Vista or 7.

Power on or restart the computer. If running more than one operating system, choose the version of Windows you want to access in Safe Mode from the boot selection menu.

Press the "F8" key repeatedly before the Windows logo appears. If your Inspiron includes Windows XP, the "Windows Advanced Options Menu" will open. Microsoft renamed this menu "Advanced Boot Options" in Windows Vista and 7.

Select "Safe Mode," "Safe Mode with Networking" or "Safe Mode with Command Prompt," depending on how you intend to use Safe Mode to troubleshoot your Inspiron. Press the "Enter" key to restart the computer in Safe Mode.