Soft reboots are preferable to hard reboots since a hard reboot can result in corrupt application files, incorrect system permissions and other software-related problems. Hard reboots involve manually shutting down computer by shutting off the power to the system. Soft reboots use software to shut down the computer and shut down any open applications in a manner that is less likely to cause damage to data. If your business computer stops responding, try to use a soft reboot first and save the hard reboots for when all else fails. There are three common options for performing a soft reboot on a Mac.
Click the "Apple" menu and select "Restart" from the drop-down menu if you are able to use your mouse to activate menus.
Press "Ctrl-Eject" to activate the shut down options for your computer. Press the "R" key on your keyboard to restart your computer if you chose to display the shut down options.You can also press "Ctrl-Cmd-Eject" to reboot the computer immediately.
Press "Ctrl-Cmd-Eject" to reboot the computer immediately, if you don't want to select from a list of shut down options.
If all else fails, press down and hold the power button on your Mac until your computer shuts down. Then, restart the computer by pressing the power button again.
Information in this article applies to Macs running Mac OS X Mountain Lion. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.