How to Boot in Safe Mode Mac

Kyle Wood

Mac, Tutorials

If you’re facing issues with your Mac and need to troubleshoot, one of the best options is to boot in Safe Mode. Safe Mode allows your Mac to start up with only essential system software, disabling unnecessary third-party extensions and startup items.

This can help you identify and resolve problems that might be causing your Mac to behave unexpectedly. In this article, we’ll guide you on how to boot in Safe Mode on a Mac.

Step 1: Shut down your Mac

Before starting the Safe Mode process, make sure to save any unsaved work and close all open applications. Once you’re ready, follow these steps:

  • Click on the Apple menu in the top-left corner of the screen.
  • Select “Shut Down” from the dropdown menu.
  • Wait for your Mac to shut down completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 2: Start your Mac in Safe Mode

To start your Mac in Safe Mode:

  1. Press and hold the power button on your Mac.
  2. Release the power button once you see the Apple logo or a spinning globe.
  3. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard immediately after releasing the power button.
  4. You can release the Shift key when you see the login window or desktop icons, indicating that your Mac has successfully booted in Safe Mode.


In some cases, starting up in Safe Mode may take longer than usual as your Mac performs additional checks and disables unnecessary software.

Identifying and resolving issues in Safe Mode

Once your Mac is in Safe Mode, you can start troubleshooting the problems you’re experiencing. Safe Mode limits your Mac to running only essential software, making it easier to identify any software conflicts or issues. Here are a few steps you can take:

1. Check for software conflicts:

In Safe Mode, check if the problem still persists.

If the issue is resolved, it may indicate that a third-party extension or startup item is causing the problem. You can review recently installed software or extensions and remove them to resolve the conflict.

2. Repair disk permissions:

Sometimes incorrect permissions on system files can cause issues with your Mac. In Safe Mode, you can use Disk Utility to repair disk permissions.

Open Disk Utility from the Utilities folder and select your startup disk. Click on “First Aid” and then “Repair Disk Permissions.” Wait for the process to complete, then restart your Mac normally to see if it resolves the problem.

3. Remove login items:

Login items are applications or services that automatically open when you log in to your Mac.

They can sometimes cause conflicts or slow down your system. In Safe Mode, go to System Preferences > Users & Groups > Login Items and remove any unnecessary login items.

Exiting Safe Mode

If you’ve completed troubleshooting and want to exit Safe Mode:

  1. Click on the Apple menu in the top-left corner of the screen.
  2. Select “Restart” from the dropdown menu.
  3. Your Mac will now restart normally without entering Safe Mode.


If your Mac continues to boot in Safe Mode even after restarting, there might be an issue with your system software or hardware. In such cases, it’s recommended to contact Apple Support or visit an authorized service provider for further assistance.

By following these steps, you can easily boot your Mac in Safe Mode and troubleshoot any issues you may be facing. Remember to save your work and close all applications before starting the process. Safe Mode can be a valuable tool in diagnosing and resolving problems on your Mac.

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