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When starting Windows in Safe Mode, you can see a list of loaded drivers on the screen. I would like to know where Windows looks to find which drivers it loads and in what order.

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1  
%systemroot%\system32\driverstore directs the system to the proper driver locations I believe. – Jeff F. Apr 14 '11 at 16:49
    
That is the driver store for re installation purposes, drivers are loaded from Windows\system32\Drivers – Moab Apr 14 '11 at 17:26
up vote 4 down vote accepted

XP Safe Mode loads the set of Drivers and Services listed at this registry key

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SafeBoot\Minimal

or this key if you select with networking

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SafeBoot\Network

.

This is not the location of the drivers but the list it uses to choose what driver to load from Windows\system32\drivers

Source of Information

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