The Grey Chronicles

2010.February.5

How Safe is Microsoft’s Safe Mode? Epilogue


On the fourth day of still logging-in only through SAFE MODE and denied of Normal Mode, I tried the last available recourse: load the Last Known Good Configuration that worked. As expected, Windows loaded in Normal Mode, but unfortunately trying back to login to SAFE MODE, I was then again denied access to load Windows through SAFE MODE. I did not encounter the morbidity of the so-called Blue Screen of Death. No amount of continuously pressing F8 then choosing SAFE MODE or SAFE MODE with Networking would do the trick. Windows just restarted and boot itself to Normal Mode. Damn! Back to the same problem I had six months ago!

I know that the keyboard’s F8 key is working, because booting up shown me the choices of SAFE MODE, SAFE MODE with Networking, Normal Mode, etc. Again using the System Configuration utility, Start –> Run –> msconfig, then selected boot.ini and selected the bootoption /safeboot. Reboot . . . then still NOTHING! Tried with logging the boot to troubleshoot whatever is the problem. Reboot . . . still no SAFE MODE and no boot log was generated.

I am rather thankful that Windows loaded normally. For three days, I was stuck at SAFE MODE! This was the reason why I hardly posted in the «The Grey Chronicles». The ever present SAFE MODE would not allow me to connect to the Internet, either. In one of its support sites, viewed through an hour use in an Internet cafe, Microsoft suggested to run their own flavor of anti-malware scans: Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool, Windows Defender, and Microsoft Security Essentials; but running all the available Microsoft-provided security software for hours produced nothing malicious either. Another user suggested that I try these tools in SAFE MODE! Huh? I did specify that I cannot access SAFE MODE after choosing the Last Known Good Configuration, so how the hell would I do as suggested?

Another user suggested shifting to Linux. Another huh?!? I am more comfortable with Microsoft, thus I am stuck to suffer the consequence of this choice. I tried Linux before using an old desktop PC which had already expired its usability, but with the dearth of the familiar applications like Microsoft Office compatible with those I used at my work, I deliberately switched back to Microsoft OS. Yeah, I also tried the Open Office, but I work faster with Microsoft software.

When I acquired this Compaq Presario 2100 Notebook, I even tried using ubuntu, but even though ubuntu was installed in another partition, it messed up the installed Microsoft Windows, a problem with the grub.dll. Thus, after repairing back Windows, reactivating it through a phone call to Microsoft, I vowed not to retry using ubuntu in this Notebook. Maybe in the near future when I can afford to buy another unit, I will definitely be installing ubuntu. I heard that it is more secure than Windows and there is no need for a SAFE MODE to administer system resources.

Maybe I should have NOT heeded a Microsoft MVP’s advice somewhere on the web to create a Power or Limited Access User instead of another Administrator aside from the default Administrator. Also another advice was to activate the Guest account as the primary account to access the Internet. Unfortunately, in SAFE MODE the Guest Account is NOT accessible! When this Notebook was only loading in SAFE MODE, I had the chance to change the usual Power User account I previous used to an Administrator. I anticipated that when Windows load itself through Normal Mode, at least I could then make systemic changes without booting to SAFE MODE. At least, now I know that I made the right decision.

Damn, SAFE MODE! At least with Windows loading back in Normal Mode, I could resume blogging and posting in «The Grey Chronicles». If my suspicions are right, Windows7 will still have this SAFE MODE feature. Maybe Microsoft should change its name from SAFE MODE to something other that affixing the word SAFE to it. How about FUCKED MODE?!?

Maybe it is a private joke at Microsoft, like let’s retain this SAFE MODE feature in all our future Windows versions . . . we could generate more Support fees and retain our market share. Anyway, majority of PC users are stuck at using our very-buggy-and-full-of-security-holes Windows!. It is like saying, why do we care for customers, we care more for profits than the empty musings of a blogger or a frustrated Microsoft user!

I know the number is increasing based on various posts on help and fora sites I visited since 2005 to present, thus maybe all computer users having this SAFE MODE problem could send-off respective units to Microsoft headquarters at Richmond, and let those Microsoft Support staff REALLY come up with a suitable and working solution instead of the usual backup-reformat-reinstall Windows route!

If Microsoft Windows’ SAFE MODE could be attacked by malware, could be changed through some tweaks in its NT Loader code, could not be accessed even through checking the options using the System Configuration Utility, is it really SAFE MODE?


Notes:

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 LicenseDisclaimer: The posts herein do not necessarily represent any organization’s positions, strategies or opinions. Read the full version of self-imposed rules for this blog: A New Year; New Rules. Unless otherwise expressly stated, the posts are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.
Comments are moderated to keep the discussion relevant and civil. Readers are responsible for their own statements.

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