You’ve probably had an issue with your computer before, and when you called support services, they asked if you tried restarting it. Restarting a computer is a simple solution to many problems; that’s why technicians recommend it as the first step when fixing most computer issues.
A reboot enables your computer to start on a clean slate and potentially shut down any problem that may be plaguing it. But sometimes, a reboot doesn’t immediately fix the issue.
Rebooting Your Computer
There are three ways your computer powers down; shut down, restart and sleep. A shutdown closes all your computer’s programs and functions till you switch it on again. A restart shuts down all the programs and functions and immediately starts up again. Sleep mode shuts the screen down but leaves programs and functions open till you interact with the computer again, e.g., by pressing any key or lifting the screen up on a laptop.
Putting your computer to sleep will rarely fix an issue. Often putting your computer to sleep takes up RAM, which can exacerbate performance issues. On the other hand, a restart or reboot can solve several issues such as;
- A blue screen report.
- Malfunctioning program.
- Malware attack
- Frozen screen.
- Inadequate space for software operations.
- Overheating of components.
- Obsolete software.
Although a reboot or restart can solve many computer issues, it may fall short sometimes. This may be because:
- Your computer has loose connections and can’t operate properly. Check for loose connections, like the power, keyboard, or screen connections, and fasten them.
- Your hardware is failing. Hardware like the hard drive or RAM is essential for operations; if it is damaged or worn out, your computer won’t reboot.
- Components are still hot and can’t function till they cool down.
- There is a software or operating software failure.
- The malware has done extensive damage.
When Restarting Doesn’t Work
When a reboot doesn’t work, you may have to try alternative fixes. So the first step would be to diagnose the issue. Keep in mind that the problem can be any number of issues.
If a reboot doesn’t work, you can diagnose the issue using the basic input or output system, or BIOS, to perform a power-on self-test or POST. The POST will display a code for any errors it encounters. If your monitor isn’t working or the POST doesn’t detect it, then your computer will emit beeping sounds to indicate specific errors. Take note of the error code on display or the beeps and search the internet for what it means.
If you can only boot to the operating system, you can use built-in software bypasses to regain the use of your machine. On Microsoft Windows operating system, you press the F8 key as the computer powers on to access a “Safe Mode“, which will load only critical system files. You hold the “C” key on your keyboard while powering on to boot from a system restore disc on a Macintosh computer. Once the computer boots up, you can diagnose software conflicts before rebooting as you usually would.
If the issue isn’t software or operating system related, then it may have something to do with your hardware. Hardware performance can diminish over time or even fail. Your only option would be to repair or replace the hardware. Some hardware, like the fan, is simple to fix, while others, like RAM, will require a replacement.
A Deeper Issue
If a computer seems to require frequent reboots, that might indicate a bigger problem for which you will need a computer tech expert. An expert technician has the experience, expertise, and tools to diagnose and fix any computer issue. They can realize and solve technical problems better and faster than you.
It may be tempting to resolve the issue yourself, but you could worsen the problem. For example, you may scratch circuitry while fixing a component or altering software code. Rather than DIY your computer issue, do an internet search for “pc repair shop near me” for help.
Restart for a Fresh Start
Computers are central to education, work, and entertainment, so it can be a troubling experience when they fail. When you face an issue, attempt a reboot so that your computer can have a fresh start and shake off the bugs.
If that doesn’t work, you’ll need to determine whether it is a software, operating system, or hardware issue. If you have any trouble with finding a fix, then use the services of a professional computer technician; they will have your computer running again.