How to Force Restart Mac

Joel Mason

Mac, Tutorials

Do you find yourself in a situation where your Mac becomes unresponsive and you’re not sure what to do? Don’t worry, there’s a solution – force restarting your Mac.

This handy troubleshooting trick can help resolve a variety of issues, from frozen applications to unresponsive system processes. In this tutorial, we will guide you through the steps to force restart your Mac.

Before You Begin

Before we dive into force restarting your Mac, it’s important to note that this should be used as a last resort. Force restarting can potentially lead to data loss or corruption if you have unsaved work or open applications. It’s always recommended to save your work and close any running applications before proceeding.

The Keyboard Shortcut Method

If your Mac is completely unresponsive and the mouse cursor won’t move, you can use a keyboard shortcut to force restart it. Press and hold the Control, Command, and Power buttons simultaneously for about 10 seconds.


This keyboard shortcut may vary slightly depending on the model of your Mac. On older Macs with removable batteries, you may need to remove the battery first before holding down the keys.

The Menu Bar Method

If your Mac is partially responsive and you can access the menu bar, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Apple menu icon located on the top-left corner of the screen.
  2. Select Restart from the drop-down menu.
  3. A confirmation dialog will appear. Click on the Restart button.

The Force Quit Applications Method

If a specific application is causing your Mac to freeze, you can use the Force Quit Applications window to close it. Here’s how:

  1. Press and hold the Command + Option + Escape keys simultaneously.
  2. The Force Quit Applications window will appear.
  3. Select the unresponsive application from the list.
  4. Click on the Force Quit button.

The Terminal Method

If all else fails, you can resort to using Terminal to force restart your Mac. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Terminal application from the Utilities folder or by searching for it in Spotlight.
  2. Type in the following command: sudo shutdown -r now
  3. Press Enter and enter your administrator password when prompted.
  4. Your Mac will begin the restart process immediately.

In Conclusion

Force restarting your Mac can be a helpful troubleshooting step when faced with unresponsive applications or system processes. However, it’s important to remember that force restarting should be used sparingly and as a last resort.

Always make sure to save your work and close any running applications before proceeding with a force restart. We hope this tutorial has provided you with the necessary information to effectively force restart your Mac when needed!

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