Before we get our hands dirty, here’s a word of warning. If you’re wondering how to reboot a MacBook Pro, bear in mind it’s the last resort when all other methods to unfreeze your Mac had failed. Don’t try it too often, as it may harm your system. No question, your Mac can handle rapid power losses, and your hardware most likely won’t be hurt. What’s at risk, though, is your data because each time you force reboot a Mac, it affects the consistency of the file system. Now that you’ve been warned let’s go.
The first and the conventional method to force shutdown or restart your computer is. Here is how to force restart a Mac and what to do if your MacBook is frozen. We’ll explain how to force shutdown your Mac with the stroke of a button. Learn how to force restart Mac, MacBook Pro, Air or iMac. Tested methods to force shutdown or reboot your frozen or crashing Mac Computer. Rebooting is like force restarting your MacBook. For this, you need to press and hold the command and CTRL keys along with the power button until the screen goes blank and the machine sound restarting. How do you restart a frozen MacBook? Press the power button on the Mac keyboard for 6 seconds. Occasionally, a Mac can become stubbornly uncooperative and refuse to accept inputs. It's time for a reboot. Here are some simple techniques to force a restart your Mac with escalating abruptness.
Symptoms your frozen Mac needs a force restart
- Applications are not responding
- The pointer is not responsive
- Loud fan noise
- The screen goes black
- Mac unable to restart
Can you move the cursor? If yes, try this
Before you force restart a Mac, it’s always recommended to first try a software solution.
- Go to the Apple menu
- Choose Restart
- Click Restart in the menu that appears
Two ways to force restart a Mac
The simplest method: hold down the Power button till your Mac shuts down. Press the button again to restart it.
If your Mac hangs for good and the pointer is inactive:
- Hold down Control-Command while pressing the Power button.
This is an alternative key combination to force restart a Mac. By the way, if you are on an iMac, the Power button is found on the back of your Mac. Voila!
Is Shut Down any different from Restart?
The difference between Shut Down and Restart is quite self-explanatory. When you perform a restart, your Mac will turn on again, loading its previously active apps. As for shut down, your Mac won’t start until you press the Power button again. Interestingly, all new Macs have an automatic reboot feature built-in. So even if you sit and do nothing, your frozen Mac would eventually reboot by itself, though it takes a bit of patience.
How to force shut down a frozen Mac
If you need to force shut down a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, all you need is again to press a Power button on your Mac’s keyboard.
- Press and hold the Power button for 2 seconds.
- Choose Restart, Sleep, or Shut Down in the menu that appears.
If you don’t want to reload the baggage of your previously opened apps, tick off “Reopen windows when logging back in.” We recommend you deselect this option when your Mac is slow to lighten the weight on your RAM.
If your Mac won’t shut down:
- Press and hold the Power button.
- Hold the button until the Mac shuts down.
Needless to say that when you force restart a Mac, all your unsaved projects may be lost. It’s unfair, we know.
Why does my Mac keep freezing?
The obvious explanation is your Mac lacks memory. Or, to put it another way, there are too many active processes running on your Mac. First off, go to Activity Monitor to check your memory usage.
- Go to Applications > Utilities > Activity Monitor
- Click the Memory tab.
Now, look into how heavily your Memory is loaded. Quit apps that eat up too much memory for no reason. While this may work as a temporary solution, it doesn’t stop your Mac from freezing up again. You can either force reboot your Mac each time or opt for a radical solution. Below are a few more ideas you can try.
More ways to fix a frozen Mac
Restart your Mac in the Diagnostics mode
Shut down your Mac and reboot while pressing the D key. Within the menu that appears, launch the Apple Diagnostics tool. This will check your Mac’s drive for errors. From then, follow the prompts to finish the diagnostics.
Clean up your Mac
Remove old unused apps, system junk, and pervasive browser extensions. For this purpose, try running the CleanMyMac X application on your Mac.
It’s quite effective in removing all junk from your Mac and has several helpful utilities, like RAM free up or app uninstaller. Download it for free here.
Reinstall your macOS
This is the most radical of all methods; that’s why it’s so effective.
- Check out how to clean install macOS Sierra
- Instructions for macOS High Sierra
- How to clean install macOS Mojave
- How to clean install macOS Catalina
- How to clean install macOS Big Sur
Hope this guide has helped you. Before you force shut down this article, feel free to share it using the social buttons below. Cheers!
In some special situations like Mac frozen, programs froze your Mac, etc., you can force close your Mac and then restart the machine to use it as normal. However, do you know how to force restart a Mac when necessary? In this post, MiniTool Software will show you a guide and some related information.
Force Restart Mac Computer
How to Force Restart a Mac Computer?
When your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, or iMac encounter issues and you can’t shut it down normally, you may need to force restart it. If you are a new Mac user, you may don’t know how to force restart a Mac.
For example, you may want to know how to reboot a MacBook Pro when frozen. Don’t worry, it is a very easy job. We will tell you how to force restart a Mac in this part. But before this, you should pay attention to these things (under these situations, you don’t need to force restart your Mac):
- If it is an application that is frozen and you can still move your cursor and do other things, you can force quit the application to make everything goes back to normal. You can hold down the Option key and then right-click the app’s icon. Next, click Force Quit to force close the frozen app.
- If your macOS has no response but you can still move the mouse cursor, you can use the normal steps to reboot your MacBook Pro: you can click the Apple icon at the top-left corner and then select Restart.
Force Restart Mac Computer Manually
How to Force Restart a MacBook Pro?
To force restart your MacBook Pro, you need to use the MacBook Pro button. There are two methods to force restart a Mac computer: one is to force close your Mac and then restart it as normal. The other method is to directly force restart a MacBook Pro.
Method 1: Force Close a Mac and then Restart It
To force close a MacBook Pro that has no response, you can press the MacBook Pro power button for a while until the machine shuts down. Next, you can press the power button to reboot it.
Method 2: Directly Force Restart a Mac
Press and hold Command-Control along with the MacBook Pro power button until the screen goes blank and the machine restarts
Force Reboot Mac Desktop
If your MacBook Air/MacBook Pro/MacBook won’t turn on, you can read this article to get some useful solutions and recover your Mac data if necessary.
The Location of the Power Button for Each Model of Mac
If you are using other models of Mac computers, the power button may be different.
How To Force Restart Mac Computer
- If you are using a MacBook Air, the power button is the Touch ID button (in the top-right corner of the keyboard).
- If you are using a MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar, the power button is the Touch ID surface on the rightmost side of the Touch Bar.
- If you are using an iMac, you can find the power button behind the bottom-left corner of the screen.
How to Reboot a MacBook Pro?
If you just want to reboot your MacBook Pro, you need to do these things in advance:
- Save the files you have opened and edited.
- Remove the connected external hard drive.
- Quit the applications you are running.
How To Force Restart Mac Computer
The followings are three methods to reboot a Mac:
Method 1: Click the Apple icon and then select Restart to reboot your MacBook Pro.
Force Restart Mac Desktop
Method 2: On the other hand, you can also press and hold the Command key and then press the power button. When you see the system shutdown dialog, you need to click Restart to reboot your Mac.
Method 3: If you are a professional Mac user, you can also use the Terminal to reboot your Mac: you need to open the Mac Terminal and then type sudo shutdown -r <time>. Here, time stands for the time you want to reboot your Mac. If you want to restart your Mac right now, you need to type now, that is sudo shutdown -r now. Then, you need to press Enter and input your password if prompted. Your MacBook Pro will restart as per your requirement.