How to Restart a Computer

By Catherine Johnson

Restarting your computer is a normal part of the maintenance process for your computer. After installing new programs or security updates, your computer will need to be restarted in order to process the new data and information. Restarting your computer can also provide a quick fix when you have difficulties with your WiFi or Internet connections or when your programs or applications freeze up. Here is how you can easily restart either your Windows or Macintosh computer.

Step 1

On your PC, click the "Start" button (in Windows XP) or "Windows" button (in Vista) on the lower left corner of your screen. In the window that pops up, select the small arrow on the bottom right corner. Click "Restart." Your computer will immediately close all open programs, shut down and restart.

Step 2

On your Macintosh computer, click the "Apple" icon in the Finder menu on the top left corner of your screen. Select "Restart." Your Mac will immediately quit any open programs, shut down and restart. You can also press "Ctrl+Eject" and in the window that appears, select "Restart."

Step 3

If you are having difficulties shutting down applications and processes, you can force your Windows PC to restart. Go to the "Start" button and click "Run." Enter "shutdown -r -t 1 --f" and Windows will complete the shut down process and restart without waiting for programs to close.

Step 4

To force a restart on your Mac computer, press and hold down the power button for five seconds. This will force your computer to shut down. Press the power button again to restart.