f8 doesn't work

dell e510
October 7, 2007 at 14:35:23
Specs: xp home, 3.0 1
During startup, i've tried pressing f8, holding f8, pressing f8 really fast. and the same thing with f5. nothing gets into the screen for safe mode. windows will not start, so i can't restart in safe mode from start screen.I have the cd for xp, to get into recovery console.
Can anyone help?

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October 7, 2007 at 15:03:52
start, run, type msconfig and click OK.

open the BOOT.INI tab and check the box /SAFEBOOT

undo the changes later in Safe Mode to boot normally again.

or download and use BootSafe:


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October 7, 2007 at 15:10:10
Your BIOS settings MAY need to be changed if you are using a USB KBoard. If so, you will need to temporarity use a PS/2 KBoard and Enter the BIOS. You need to Enable legusy USB devices.

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October 7, 2007 at 15:11:26
Next time start taping the F8 key about once every second or two immediately after you start the boot.

Another way that 'sometimes' works is to hold down the ctrl key.

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Related Solutions

October 7, 2007 at 15:35:31
Num lock may cause it.

Some cd burning apps may cause it. (I think it was nero)

A VB script might cause it.

A real stinker of an issue.

I read it wrong and answer it wrong too. So get off my case you peanut.

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October 7, 2007 at 15:44:04
i CANNOT get into windows, so i can't go to run.
i do have usb key and mouse, there is no slot for anything else.
i have held ctrl all the way up until it says ntldr is missing, and pressed f8/f5 at any possible time.
ill try turning on/off num lock.
i had sonic cd burning but cant get to it.

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October 7, 2007 at 15:55:56
The first thing you should have told us is that ntldr is missing.

You'll have to use the XP CD to do a repair install (not the recovery console).

Please let us know if you found someone's advice to be helpful.

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October 7, 2007 at 16:03:37
go to your BIOS seup utility and set USB legacy support to enabled.

to restore your missing NTLDR, boot from your XP installaton CD into the Recovery Console, at the command prompt type the following two commands, pressing Enter after each one:

copy d:\i386\ntldr c:\

copy d:\i386\ntdetect.com c:\

(In the command listed above, d: represents the drive letter assigned to the optical drive that your Windows XP CD is currently in. While this is most often d, your system could assign a different letter. Also, c:\ represents the root folder of the partition that Windows XP is currently installed on. Again, this is most often the case but your system could be different.)

If you're prompted to overwrite either of the two files, press Y.

Take out the Windows XP CD, type exit and then press Enter to restart your PC.

Assuming that missing or corrupt versions of the NTLDR and/or Ntdetect.com files were your only issues, Windows XP should now start normally.

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October 7, 2007 at 16:14:35
F2 should get you into the setup screens.

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October 7, 2007 at 23:27:02

on some models of Dell computers F8 does not work and was replaced by Dell Diagnostics/repair set up on F12.

reboot and toggle the F12 key to boot to the diagnostic/repair option built into the system!

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