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Q100288: Launching Modo in safe mode


This article shows how to launch Modo in safe mode. The safe mode functionality was introduced in Modo 11 and is useful for troubleshooting problems by ruling out if they are due to a 3rd party kit, plug-in or a user customisation.  

For similar troubleshooting in previous versions of Modo that don't support safe mode, please refer to the Q100035: Does your problem occur in Vanilla MODO? article.



When Modo runs in safe mode it will not load any custom preferences or settings unique to your Modo environment and only runs using the contents of the Modo install directory. Safe mode will also disable any 3rd party plug-ins, kits or user customisations like scripts, essentially running Modo as though it were freshly installed on your machine in vanilla mode.

Running Modo in safe mode is essential for debugging purposes and can help determine if problems you encounter are caused by user customisations, 3rd party plug-ins or kits, or if they happen with the core Modo install. 

When launching Modo in safe mode:

  • No user configuration file should load. The configuration file would hold information for actions such as saved preferences, key mappings, custom layouts or Viewport settings.
  • No external plug-ins or kits should be loaded such as Power SubD-Nurbs or Substance. This also excludes their configurations, held in the Configs directory.
  • No external or custom scripts should be loaded.
  • Internally bundled kits such as Mesh Fusion and the Game Export tools should still load and function as usual.




Launching safe mode using the Modo bundled shortcut 

A safe mode shortcut has been bundled with the Modo installation from Modo 11 onward to make launching Modo in safe mode straightforward. Entering safe mode via the bundled shortcut will not override your previous configuration file upon closing the safe mode session.

Exact steps on accessing the bundled shortcut for safe mode are below:


To launch Modo on Windows, do one of the following:

  • Double-click the Modo 11.0v1 (Safe Mode) icon on the Desktop if you chose to create one on installation.
  • Select Modo 11.0v1 (Safe Mode) from Start > All Programs > Luxology
  • As of Modo 11.2v1, you must now access safe mode from Start > All Programs > Foundry


Drag and drop the new Safe Mode script from the DMG to the same location as the corresponding Modo application (i.e. Applications folder). Double-click the Modo (Safe Mode) shortcut to run in safe mode.

NOTE: Renaming the Modo application from the default naming convention will break the script for safe mode.


There is no bundled shortcut available for the Linux installation of Modo. Please see the section below for instruction on launching Modo in safe mode manually on Linux.


Launching safe mode manually via Command Prompt or Terminal

When you launch Modo in safe mode manually, your old configuration file will be overwritten by a clean configuration file unless the "-dbon:noconfig" flag is also used during launch.   

The directories used in the examples below are the default installation paths Modo uses. If you have installed your Modo application in an alternate directory, you will need to replace the path below with your custom path.


Open Command Prompt and run the following command:

For Modo 11.1v1 and below:

 "C:\Program Files\Luxology\modo\[version]\modo.exe" -safemode -dbon:noconfig

For Modo 11.2v1 onward:

"C:\Program Files\Foundry\Modo\[version]\modo.exe" -safemode -dbon:noconfig


Open Terminal and run the following command: 

/Applications/Modo[version].app/Contents/MacOS/modo -safemode -dbon:noconfig

Open a Terminal session and run the following command:

/usr/local/Modo[version]/Modo[version] -safemode -dbon:noconfig



If launching Modo in safe mode resolves your issue, then this would indicate that a factor unique to your Modo environment is the likely cause for the problem you are encountering. We recommend that you try reintroducing the configuration file, the configs, kits and scripts directories one-by-one in order to identify what is causing the crash. 

If running Modo in safe mode does not resolve the problem, please open a Support ticket and let us know the exact issue you are encountering and the troubleshooting steps you have taken so far.

For more information on how to open a Support ticket, please refer to the 'Q100064: Using the Support Portal' article.


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