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Beginners Guides: Windows XP Safe Mode Explained

Beginners Guides: Windows XP Safe Mode Explained - PCSTATS
Abstract: Safe Mode is a powerful tool for fixing problems in Windows, and finally PCstats explains how to actually use it!
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Beginners Guides Feb 10 2011   Mike Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > Beginners Guides

Locating Bad Drivers Con't

Note that you should *not* perform this step with video card drivers. We'll give you another method for fixing faulty video drivers in a moment. Also, note that just because a driver is not certified does not mean that it is faulty or will not work with WindowsXP. This is just a good place to start looking.

Once you have moved the unsigned drivers into the new directory, restart in normal mode. You will get errors noting that 'at least one driver or service failed to start…' but you are looking to see if the problems you were experiencing previously have now gone away. If so, you can reboot in safe mode and move the unsigned drivers back to c:\windows\system32\drivers' one at a time, restarting between copies, until the behaviour manifests itself again and you have found the problem driver.

Correcting Video Card Driver Issues in Safe Mode

Let's look at the process of fixing a faulty graphics driver, one of the most common driver issues you may run into. The methods described below can be used for any other piece of hardware in your system also.

Rolling back video card drivers (or other device drivers)

If you have installed a new version of your standard graphics driver and suddenly experience problems with booting into windows, the best thing to do is to roll back the driver in question. To do this:

Load Windows XP in safe mode.
Right click on 'my computer' and select 'properties.'

Choose the 'hardware' tab and click 'device manager.'

Now expand the 'display adaptors' category and highlight your video card's name. Right click on it and select 'properties.' Go to the 'driver' tab.

From here, you have several choices for fixing your driver issue. Your main options should be to roll back or update the driver. Rolling back the device driver will revert your system to the previous (hopefully stable) drivers, while the 'update driver' button will allow you to install new drivers.

The 'roll back drivers' option should be the first one you try, as it will revert your video card back to the set of drivers it was using before you installed the faulty ones. Select this option and restart in normal mode to test.

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Contents of Article: Beginners Guides
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guides: Windows XP Safe Mode Explained
 Pg 2.  How do I get into safe mode?
 Pg 3.  Running System Restore in Safe Mode
 Pg 4.  Identifying the cause of the problem
 Pg 5.  Stoping Autorun Programs Con't
 Pg 6.  — Locating Bad Drivers Con't
 Pg 7.  Disabling devices in safe mode

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