Soft reboot mac

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How to Soft Reboot an Apple MacBook

When it comes to rebooting your MacBook, softer is better. A hard reboot usually consists of pressing the power button until the computer shuts off, then pressing it again to restart the laptop. However, this will cause you to lose any work you haven't saved and can potentially cause data loss if the hard drive is active when you reboot. To avoid these dangers, you should perform a soft reboot whenever possible. A soft reboot restarts the MacBook only after Mac OS X has saved its state, properly closed your open applications and spun down the hard drive.

Save any files you've been working on and quit the open programs. While most applications won't quit without prompting you to save any unsaved work, if you're working within a Web browser you may not see such a warning. If you want to reboot from a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM, put the disk in the drive before you shut down.

Choose "Restart" from the MacBook's Apple menu, and either click "Restart" to reboot immediately or allow the timer to count down to delay the restart. You may also restart by quickly pressing and releasing the Power button and clicking "Restart," by pressing "Ctrl" and the eject key (in the upper-right corner of the keyboard) and clicking "Restart" or by pressing "Cmd-Ctrl" with the eject key. Each of these methods will reboot your MacBook in the same way.

Wait until you hear the MacBook's restart chime. Hold "C" if you want to start from a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM or hold "Shift" to restart in Safe Mode. If you're using Boot Camp to run Windows on your MacBook, press "Option" for a boot menu or press "X" to boot directly into Mac OS X.



  • If you're familiar with the Terminal application, you may also restart your MacBook by typing "reboot" in the Terminal window.

Writer Bio

Michael Cox writes about lifestyle issues, popular culture, sports and technology. In a career spanning more than 10 years, he has contributed to dozens of magazines, books and websites, including and "Adobe Magazine." Cox holds a professional certificate in technical communications from the University of Washington.


Start up your Mac in safe mode

Starting up your Mac in safe mode can help you determine whether issues you’re experiencing are caused by software that loads as your Mac starts up.

Start up an Intel-based Mac in safe mode

  1. On your Mac, choose Apple menu  > Shut Down.

    After your Mac shuts down, wait 10 seconds.

  2. Restart your Mac, then immediately press and hold the Shift key.

  3. Release the Shift key when you see the login window.

Start up a Mac with Apple silicon in safe mode

  1. On your Mac, choose Apple menu  > Shut Down.

    After your Mac shuts down, wait 10 seconds.

  2. Press and hold the power button on your Mac until the startup options window appears showing available startup disks and Options.

  3. Select a startup disk.

  4. Press and hold the Shift key, click Continue in Safe Mode, then release the Shift key.

To leave safe mode, restart your Mac normally, without pressing and holding any keys during startup.

See alsoDetermine which disk started up your MacWays to start up your MacApple Support article: How to use safe mode on your Mac

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Losing data on your computer is always frustrating, regardless of the reasons for it happening.

No one wants to lose a project they’ve been working on or have an interruption in their workflow or entertainment due to the functionality of the computer. It could be something small such as a password or text chain or something big and important like a large project for work or an important document, but if it’s lost, it’s a real pain.

Sometimes you need to reset your MacBook Pro. This could be because the screen freezes and you can’t get any applications or programs to run.

It could also be because of any assortment of other issues that necessitate a reset.

If you have to reset your computer, you sure don’t want to lose any important data so let’s take a look at how to reset your MacBook Pro without losing any data.


Why Reset Your MacBook Pro

A soft reset of your MacBook Pro is a simple task that could occur as often as a couple of times a day, depending on how often you use your computer.

This type of reset is usually done to fix a frozen screen or unresponsive program and can also be a solution to get programs to work after a new install or upgrade to your computer. Oftentimes, if your MacBook Pro is acting weird or running slow, this soft reset can do the trick to get it running right.

A factory reset is a more in-depth reset of your entire computer. If you do this type of reset without taking the proper steps, you can lose all of the data on your computer during the course of the process. It’s not hard to perform this reset but a lot of people don’t realize that it can completely wipe out most of your data if you don’t know how to prevent that from happening.

This factory reset basically removes all information on your MacBook Pro and restores everything to exactly how it was set up when you purchased it. This reset can help speed up a slow computer or get rid of any files and programs that are bogging your system down.

You might also want to perform a factory reset if you are selling your computer to another person so that they do not have any access to your files.

How to Reset MacBook Pro Without Losing Data

For a soft reset, there is less risk in losing data during the process. If your computer is not frozen, be sure to save any and all information in currently running programs and try to close them before restarting. You can now click restart under the Apple menu in the upper left corner of your screen and upon the reboot, your data should still be there.

For a factory reset, there are some extra steps you need to take to make sure you don’t lose any important data in the process. Since a factory reset basically wipes your computer clean, never go through with the process until you know any information you want to keep is backed up so you don’t lose it.

The steps for completing a factory reset on your MacBook Pro without losing data are:

1. Backup your Data

This is a crucial first step to preserving your important data and information.

You can make a copy of all of the data contained on your MacBook Pro and you should do so before performing a reset. You can backup all of your data easily onto an external hard drive. By using the Time Machine program built in to your MacBook Pro, you can easily make a copy of all of your information and store it on an external hard drive.

You can choose to perform a complete backup of all of the information stored on your computer or can be selective and only choose certain files that you want to store. Time Machine and other backup programs will allow you to pick and choose the files you want to keep easily.

2. Reset Your Computer

A factory reset is more complicated than a simple reset and there are a few more steps to the process. First, sign out of any apps that are in use or always signed in such as iTunes, iMessage, and iCloud.

Next go to the Apple menu in the top left corner of your screen and click restart. While your computer is restarting and you see the black screen with white Apple logo, hold down the command button and R on the keypad at the same time. This will open the Disk Utility window and allow you to erase all of the information.

From here, click on Disk Utility and then Continue. Choose your hard drive from the options available and click erase. After you erase all of the information on your computer, you’ll need to reinstall the operating system. Click on Disk Utility again and then on Reinstall macOS.

3. Restore Data to Computer

After you have performed this factory reset, you can then restore your saved and backed up data back on to the computer. Simply plug in your hard drive where you saved your data back into your MacBook Pro to get the information back onto the computer.

Once connected, open the Finder, click Applications, click Utilities, click Migration Assistant, and click continue. This window will now show up on your screen:

Click the source from which you want to load information back to your computer. This could be another computer, a hard drive, or through Time Machine.

Once you choose your source, click continue and your data will be restored to the computer that was reset without losing any of the original data.

Final Thoughts

Resetting your MacBook Pro can come in handy for a variety of reasons but you never want to lose any important data when performing such a task.

It’s a good habit to back up the data on your Mac often and it is very important to do this when performing a factory reset that will wipe out all of the data on your MacBook Pro.

If you follow the easy steps above, you will never have to worry about losing data when performing one of these resets.

Have you ever performed a factory reset on your computer? Did you lose any data?

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How to Reboot Your iMac

Whether you need to install a new program, enter a different hard drive or escape a system crash, there will undoubtedly come a time when you will need to reboot your iMac. Fortunately the iMac offers a variety of ways to do it. If everything is working properly and you simply need to reboot your computer because of a download or to start a different drive, you can use one of Apple's normal restart methods to reboot the computer. If you have run into a problem that causes the normal restart methods to fail, such as the spinning beach ball of death, you will need to force a restart. Apple provides several boot options during start-up if you need to do more than simply restart your computer.

Normal Restart Methods

Step 1

Select Restart from the Apple menu. Then click "Restart" when the dialog box appears.

Step 2

Press the power button, which is located in the lower left corner of the back of the iMac. Then click "Restart" when the dialog box appears.

Step 3

Press the "Control" and eject keys simultaneously. (The eject key is at the upper right of the keyboard.) Then click "Restart" when the dialog box appears.

Force Restart Methods

Step 1

Press "Control," "Command" and "Esc" at the same time. If an application is frozen you may not need to reboot. Select the frozen application in the window that appears and click "Force Quit." If the computer still will not respond you may need to use one of the following methods to force a restart.

Step 2

Press and hold the power button for about five to seven seconds. The computer should shut down. Note that you will lose any unsaved work and may damage the operating system.

Step 3

Press "Control" and "Command" while you press the power button. The computer should shut down. Note that you will lose any unsaved work and may damage the operating system.

Step 4

Unplug the iMac from the wall. Do this as a last resort, as it will likely cause damage to the computer and software.

Restarting and Booting Options

Step 1

Plug the computer back in if necessary. Then press the power button to start the computer.

Step 2

Press the "C" key when you hear the start-up chime to boot from a CD or DVD.

Step 3

Press the "Shift" button when you hear the start-up chime to boot into Safe mode. Some features are disabled in this mode.

Step 4

Press the "Option" key when you hear the start-up chime to select which hard drive or volume Mac boots into. For example, if you need to boot into Windows using Bootcamp you should use this method.


Writer Bio

Josh McGee graduated from Utah State University with a bachelor's degree in English, professional and technical communication, and a minor in marketing. He has worked as a technical writer and illustrator for two large manufacturing companies, ICON Health and Fitness and Cover-Pools Incorporated. He is currently employed full-time for the latter.


Mac soft reboot

How to restart your Mac computer in 4 different ways, including when it's frozen

  • You should periodically restart your Mac computer in an effort to help the computer run faster, and allow it to install any pending system updates.
  • If your Mac is running slowly or failing to load certain programs properly, a restart is the best way to make it work smoothly again.
  • There are three easy ways to restart a Mac, and one override you can use to shut down a computer that's just not responding anymore.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

You would think that in this day and age, there would be a more advanced way of fixing a device's technical issues than the old "turn it off and turn it on again" technique, but for so much hardware, restarting is still the best solution to many issues.

In the restart process, a Mac closes all programs, allowing itself to start fresh when back up and running, and it installs any awaiting updates, theoretically meaning the system will be more optimized and running better than before.

Whether you know there are updates waiting or you just know there's something off about the way your Mac is running, knowing how to restart a Mac is critical knowledge. Here are three ways to restart and one to shut down.

How to restart a Mac computer in 4 ways

Restarting through the menu bar

1. Click the Apple icon in the top left hand corner of the screen.

2. In the dropdown menu that appears, hit "Restart..."

Screen Shot 2019 05 09 at 2.34.25 PM
Steven John/Business Insider

3. The computer will shut down and come back on a few moments later.

Restarting with a keyboard command

1. Simultaneously hit the "control" key and the eject button, which is in the top row of the keypad and has an upward facing arrow atop a thin line.

2. Select "Restart" in the popup window.

Screen Shot 2019 05 09 at 2.36.41 PM
Steven John/Business Insider

Force restarting with a keyboard command

1. Press the "control," the "command" and the eject keys at the same time.

2. Beware, this will immediately restart your computer and you may lose any files you're working with.

Restarting from a manual shutdown

If your computer is not responding to any of these restart methods, then you need to fully shut it down.

To force a manual shutdown, simply hold down the power button (the silver circle at the top corner of the keypad) for about six seconds. The computer will shut down and be turned off completely. Wait a short while to turn it back on.

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Steven John

Freelance Writer

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