How to Reboot a Computer Manually

Whenever your computer's operating system crashes, freezes or displays a blue error screen, you will not be able to move the mouse or use the keyboard to properly shut down the computer through the operating system. Instead, you will have to manually reboot the system. Knowing how to reboot your computer manually when your operating system experiences a critical error will ensure that you do not damage your computer's power source or the motherboard.

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Reboot a Computer Manually

Step

Press and hold the power button. Hold the power button down for 5 seconds or until the computer's power is off. The computer monitor will go black and may display a message indicating that it is not receiving a signal. You will also hear the computer's fan and power supply shut down.

Step

Wait 30 seconds. Waiting at least 30 seconds before powering the system back up will prevent your power supply, motherboard and other critical hardware from sustaining damage from powering on and off too quickly.

Step

Press the power button to start the computer. Once the computer begins to power up, note any error messages or other strange messages or behaviors. These may help you troubleshoot the cause of the earlier critical failure.

Step

Properly restart. When your computer has fully loaded all of its startup programs after the manual reboot, restart the computer through the operating system. If you are using Windows, do this by clicking the Start button to access the power menu and select "Restart." If you are using a Mac, restart the system by clicking the Apple menu and selecting "Restart."