How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode: 6 Best Methods You Must Know (2023)

Here's how to open Outlook in Safe Mode if you need to quickly fix Outlook issues and get back to your professional or personal work.

Safe mode is a buzzword for Windows PCs. Everyone has wet their hands in Safe Mode at least once in their lifetime using various versions of Windows OS.

But then your friend asks if he can help you open Outlook in safe mode and you think: wow, now Outlook has a safe mode too!

Yes really! Microsoft develops its software carefully. Create a secure and basic working environment for all your business or work applications like Microsoft Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint and more.

Read on to explore all possible ways to run Outlook in safe mode in simple steps.

What is Outlook Safe Mode?

How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode: 6 Best Methods You Must Know (1)

As the name suggests, this Outlook application mode creates a safe program execution environment for the application. Outlook may have asked you to open it in safe mode because it encountered a problem the last time you opened it.

In safe mode, you will lose several app features. Some of the key features that Outlook will disable on its own are described below:

  • It will disable all third-party and Microsoft-developed plug-ins. Because plugins are mainly the root cause of unresponsive behavior of Microsoft Outlook application.
  • The Outlook ribbon menu changes from blue to white.
  • You will also see the missing reading pane in Outlook safe mode.
  • Custom toolbar settings, if you created any, will also not be available until you restart the application in normal mode.
  • Outlook safe mode does not allow saving email templates.
  • If you use smart tags a lot in Outlook, you will start to lose this feature in safe mode.
  • Preferences that you have saved for the entire period of using the Outlook application will also not be available.
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Essentially, this mode is only intended for diagnosing and troubleshooting the Outlook application. If you need to use Outlook in safe mode, don't expect extensive business management or project management features.

You can only send emails and read emails. Outlook will disable all features that are not needed for email communication.

Reasons to Use Outlook in Safe Mode

There can be many reasons to use Outlook application in its safe mode. However, the following are the most popular reasons you should be aware of:

  • The Outlook app itself asks for your permission to allow it to run in safe mode. It happens if you didn't close the app properly last time. Or you've installed an add-in and it doesn't work well with your Outlook calendar. Also, there could be registry errors or just malware trying to take away functionality from Outlook.
  • Outlook is not sending email, receiving email or both.
  • Whenever you try to open the Outlook application it crashes instantly.
  • Are you a Windows application developer or programmer and want to study Outlook safe mode features.
  • Outlook shows known or unknown error codes and you are unable to contact Microsoft Outlook support team due to long queue. Alternatively, you might have a strong IT support team at work, but it's before or after business hours and you can't get help.

How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode

You can open Outlook in Safe Mode on any version of Windows using any of the methods mentioned below. However, you may find the most effective Windows search method on the latest Windows operating systems such as Windows 11, Windows 10 and Windows 8.

1. Using Windows Search

  • click noWindows Searchor magnifying glass icon onWindows Taskbar.
  • Now carefully type the following search keyword phrase:
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  • In the Best Match section, you will see the Open option or the hyperlink.
How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode: 6 Best Methods You Must Know (2)
  • give a clickOpen.
  • You will see a pop-up asking if you really want to open Outlook in safe mode.
  • give a clickSimand choose Outlook as the profile to open the app in your security settings.

2. In the Run command

  • Presswindows+Rtogether to open theRuncommand dialog.
  • Enter the following syntax inRundomain:
  • To knockTo enter.
  • Outlook will ask for your permission to open in safe mode.

3. Use Outlook Shortcut

You may use a different click pattern than you normally use to open the Outlook application in safe mode. The process works on all types of Outlook shortcuts like desktop shortcuts, taskbar shortcuts, start menu shortcuts, etc. That's how it's done:

  • hold theTo controlkey.
  • Now, double-click the Outlook shortcut icon on your desktop. For Outlook shortcuts elsewhere, a single click will suffice.
  • Outlook will give Safe Mode Authorization popup.
  • Upon acceptance, the application will launch in its secure environment.

This is a bit tricky method. you have to hold theTo controluntil you see Safe Mode appear. If you drop theTo controlkey right after double-clicking the Outlook shortcut, the method will not work.

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4. Using Safe Mode Shortcut

You can create a dedicated Safe Mode shortcut for Outlook application. Follow these steps to create one now:

  • The right mouse buttonin any blank space on the Windows desktop or Start screen.
  • Hover the mouse cursor over theNovoin the context menu, an extended context menu will open.
  • In this second context menu, click onShortcut.
How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode: 6 Best Methods You Must Know (3)
  • NoEnter the location of the itemfield, enter the full address of the Outlook application on your Windows PC.
  • give a clickNext.
  • Now, give the shortcut a name you'll remember.
  • give a clickfinalize.

Now just double click on this special shortcut for Outlook to show thechoose the profilescreen. After selecting a profile, you will be in Outlook Safe Mode.

If you're not sure how to get the full address from the Outlook app, try this trick:

  • OrWindows HomeoTo search formenu.
  • To writeOutlook.exeand wait for the results.
  • Under thebest matchsection, right-click the Outlook icon.
  • Select theOpen File Locationno context menu.
  • Once the folder opens, click once on the Windows address bar located at the top of the window.
  • PressTo control+Ctogether to copy the address.
  • Now paste it wherever you want and add the "\PERSPECTIVE.exe” path to the location of the pasted application.

5. No command prompt

  • OrWindows Searchand typeCMD.
  • In the search results window, clickExecute as administrator.
How to Open Outlook in Safe Mode: 6 Best Methods You Must Know (4)
  • Now, copy and paste the complete address from the Outlook application along with the "/safe". This is how the command will look:
“C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\root\Office16\OUTLOOK.EXE” /safe
  • To knockTo enter.
  • Choose a profile and the system will run Outlook in safe mode.

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6. Editing direct access from Outlook

Instead of creating a dedicated Safe Mode shortcut for Outlook, you can edit the regular shortcut to open Outlook in Safe Mode. This is how you can get this Outlook safe mode trick:

  • The right mouse buttonthe Outlook shortcut, then selectpropertiesno context menu.
  • go to theShortcutEyelash.
  • look at thetarget field. You will see the full address of Outlook.exe.
  • Go to the end of this address and add this function, “/safe.”
  • give a clickACCORDINGLYto save the changes.

From now on, this shortcut will launch Outlook in safe mode when you click on it. You can follow the steps again and remove the feature, "/safe” in the Shortcut Target field to bring back the normal Outlook shortcut icon.

One downside to this method is that it only works if there is a desktop shortcut to the Outlook application.


So now you know how to open Outlook in safe mode. You can try any of the above methods and fix Outlook issues in safe mode.

Don't forget to comment below if you know any other tricks related to Outlook safe mode.

Next, find out howschedule an email in outlookit's himSteps to recover email messages in Outlook 365.


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