How-To Geek

Make Safari Stop Crashing Every 20 Seconds on Windows Vista

The new Safari for Windows is a very slick browser that beats the pants off everything else in the speed department, but it crashes so much on Windows Vista that it’s virtually unusable.

This is a good example of where Vista’s Compatibility Mode comes to the rescue… we can set Safari to run in compatibility mode for XP and eliminate the majority of the crashing problems.

To set the compatibility mode, just right-click on the Safari icon, choose Properties and then the Compatibility tab.


Check the box for “run this program in compatibility mode for:”, and set the option to “Windows XP (Service Pack 2)”. Just remember to do this for any shortcut icon that you usually use to launch Safari.

I’ve been running it for about 2 hours now, doing everything I can think of to crash it, and haven’t had a problem so far.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 06/11/07

Comments (17)

  1. Tong

    Well… I’m using Win XP SP2.
    but Safari crashes whenever I add bookmarks or type anything in text boxes

    same results for two different WinXP SP2 machines

  2. factoid

    “The new Safari for Windows is a very slick browser that beats the pants off everything else in the speed department,”

    I have to disagree with this – not only is it a slow memory hog on Vista, they couldnt even get it to work in english: many parts (like the file, edit, etc menus and even parts of Apple webpages) are just random characters. Apple kinda dropped the ball on this one.

  3. The Geek

    To resolve the problem with the weird fonts, delete the Lucida Grande.ttf and Lucida Grande Bold.ttf files from the Safari resources directory in the installation folder.

    It’s really extremely fast for me… but overall, I think Safari is a terrible browser.

  4. 7egend

    I currently run a Dual Boot OSX and Vista, and when Safari 3 Beta came out on Vista I was estatic to actually have my fav browser on a OS that i like very much.

    I have expirenced no crashes, or strange fonts or any slowness in loading other than the first time it was launched. In my opinion Safari does blow Firefox and IE7 out of the water.

    But that is just me. I tend to use Windows Vista more than OSX but I only really used OSX cause of the Safari browser it just seemed so sexy, and rendered websites faster and more accurately, but now that it is usable on Vista…wow…poor OSX might have to disappear on my Dual Boot.

    J/K OSX is teh leet, there is always a place in my heart for it, especially Leopard..soon my love.

  5. trend breakr

    I haven’t had that many crashes with Safari 3 Beta on Vista. Don’t know what the problem is. Actually I can’t think of any problems I had with it.

    Dual booting OSX and Vista? Nice! Is there any trick to it or does it just work?

  6. Ed Veaudry

    Cannot get safari to load on vista ultimate. I put into the compatibility mode and selected xp but it still will not load. It comes up with a window that says Safari Browser has stopped working and windows will notify me when there is a solution.

  7. Josh

    This is the same for me. Every time I click on Safari it just says Safari has stopped working. Does anyone know how to get it to stop doing this and load?

  8. Jacob

    My vista doesn’t have the compatibility tab! I need

  9. Diana

    Windows XP Compatibility mode didn’t quite work for me on Vista–but Windows 98 / Windows Me did! Thanks for the tip.

  10. misanthrope666

    safari 4 doesn’t seem to have a compatibility mode so this fix isn’t going to work for me
    my problem with the browser isn’t really crashing but memory leakage issues that ramp my cpu usage up to 100% and lock my PC up this is extremely annoying and inconvenient to the point where i am about ready to switch browsers

    other then having to restart my computer atleast once a day due to safaris problems i like the browser

  11. MJ

    I don’t know why safari 4 doesn’t work for Vista. You guys have to remember that it is still in beta mode and you can’t complain. You can still download Safari 3, the sexiest web browser in the world. Just google “Safari 3 Download” and make sure to uninstall safari before reinstalling it. I am not disappointed, as the interface on 3 is much better than 4 in my opinion.

  12. vlad tspesh

    The problem is vista rather than safari i suspect … vista is awful

  13. Andrew guy

    It crashes because of slow computers. It’s not Safari’s fault. we blame programs for our problems, but really nearly every pc does this.

  14. vb

    Thanks for this suggestion.
    Its works like a charm.

  15. Bdubs

    Thanks worked for me in Windows 7 & i’m about to try it on Vista. Two different systems neither has ever had Safarit installed before however they do have IE8, Firefox & Google Chrome too. Read elsewhere that Safari uses Firefox plugins so… they suggested temporarily renaming then starting Safari. But this works. My only other question is am, i missing out on eye candy or features by running it in XP sp2 compatibility mode vs W7 or Vista?

    Thanks again

  16. steve

    safari logo is displayed safari is in my listings of loadings but will not load. when checked I keep getting a flash display, that this programme has not loaded and not in my system. why? & how can I remove what I have not got?

  17. Ryan

    Hey you wanna know something? Guess what?! THERE IS NO COMPATABILITY TAB!

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