How to Restart Mac in Safe Mode?

By Rimzhim Sharma November 7, 2016 How To, Mac

There are times when even Apple devices require some extra special treatment. Sometimes our Mac just doesn’t start due to a misbehaving application. It could also be outdated cache or some other issue that causes your Mac to slow down & crash completely. Fortunately, to escape this misery apple has already provided an easy way out i.e. the Safe mode.

Windows users might already know the safe mode, but if you’re an apple user, there might be a chance you haven’t used it yet. Here’s what you need to know about the Safe Mode, when you should use it and how to startup up Mac in Safe Mode.

What is safe mode?

Before we jump to the solution let’s get a basic understanding on what safe mode is. Apple states that Safe mode (sometimes called safe boot) is a way to start up your Mac so that it performs certain checks, and prevents some software from automatically loading or opening. Starting your Mac in safe mode does the following:

  • Verifies your startup disk, and attempts to repair directory issues if needed
  • Loads only required kernel extensions
  • Prevents Startup Items and Login Items from opening automatically
  • Disables user-installed fonts.
  • Deletes font caches, Kernel cache and other system cache files

Together, these changes can help resolve or isolate issues related to your startup disk.

How to Use Safe mode?

Follow these simple steps to start up your Mac in safe mode:

 1. Shut down or restart your Mac.

how to shut down mac

2. Immediately after you hear the startup sound, press and hold Shift key.

shift key

3. Release the Shift key when you see the Apple logo appear onscreen.

4. After Apple logo appears, it might take longer than usual for the login screen or your desktop to appear. This is because your Mac performs directory check of your startup disk as part of safe mode.

Apple image Processing

5.  Log in- We will still need to log in with username and password. We will see the words “Safe Mode” displayed in the upper-right corner of the login screen. If we have “Automatic Log in” turned on, we will still be required to enter the password while booting into Safe Mode.

Login Safe Mode

How to Exit the Safe Mode?

To exit Safe Mode, restart your Mac like you normally would (choose Apple menu > Shut Down) but don’t hold down any keys during startup. You should be redirected to your desktop in normal mode.

NOTE: Keep in mind that leaving the Safe Mode might take longer than it does to boot in normal mode.

Just be a little patient and don’t interrupt the process or hold down power button to hard-reset your Mac.

If you’re using File Vault

If your startup disk is encrypted with FileVault, you can still hold down the Shift key immediately after powering on your Mac to start up in safe mode.

You might be prompted to log in twice as part of this process – first to unlock startup disk, and a second time to log into Finder. You can let go of the Shift key after you see the first login screen.

Read more about how to manage startup programs in MAC

If your Mac restarts or shuts down in safe mode

If your Mac automatically restarts in safe mode, OS X might have found an issue that it’s trying to fix.

If your Mac turns itself off when you start up in safe mode, check power connection on your Mac to make sure it’s plugged-in securely at both ends. If you’re using a MagSafe power adapter, make sure the LED on your power adapter is yellow or green. Then, try starting up in safe mode again.

If your Mac repeatedly restarts or shuts down during safe mode, contact Apple Support, or consult with an Apple service engineer for more help.

In case you need any assistance regarding any of the above mentioned points then feel free to call us on our Toll free number 855-765-6710 (US, Canada).






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Rimzhim Sharma

"Rimzhim Sharma is a blogger at The Phone Support. An engineer by qualification, she discovered her penchant for writing all things tech and cool, quite by chance. She writes about newest technology trends and gadgets. When not writing, Rimzhim is likely to be found reading, traveling, or simply digging into her favorite foods."