If you’re having trouble with your MacBook Air, it’s easy to restart. A restart will completely reboot and reload the macOS operating system, clearing the system’s working memory for a fresh start. None of your data will be affected. Here are several ways to do it.

How to Restart The Easy Way

The easiest way to restart a Mac is by using the menu bar at the top of the screen. To do so, click the Apple logo in the upper-left corner of the screen. In the menu that appears, select “Restart.”

If you see any pop-up confirmation messages, click “Restart” again. Your Mac will close currently running apps, and the screen will momentarily go black. When you see the Apple logo on the screen, the startup process will begin. Log in as usual to continue using your Mac.

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How to Restart From the Terminal

If you have an Administrator account on your Mac, you can restart your Mac from the command line. To do so, open the Terminal app and type sudo shutdown -r now , then press Return.

Type "sudo shutdown -r now" in the Mac Terminal and hit Return.

Enter your password, then press Return. Your Mac will restart immediately.

RELATED: How to Shut Down Your Mac Using Terminal

How to Force Your Macbook Air to Restart

If your MacBook Air has become unresponsive, you can force it to shut down by pressing and holding the power button for about 10 seconds.

On older MacBook Air models, the power button is located in the upper-right corner of the keyboard.

Power button on MacBook Pro without touch bar

On newer MacBook Air models, the power button is the same as the Touch ID sensor, and it’s also located in the upper-right corner of the keyboard.

The MacBook Air Touch ID and Power Button

Press and hold the power or Touch ID button for 10 seconds. The screen will go black and the unit will turn off. To start it back up, press and hold the power button until you see the Apple logo on the screen. Good luck!

RELATED: Why Does Rebooting a Computer Fix So Many Problems?

Profile Photo for Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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