restart vs. hard restart

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by krunch, May 24, 2005.

  1. macrumors newbie

    May 23, 2005
    I can't restart my imac except through the power button...if I install new software and it asks for a restart, what effect will restarting through the power button have vs. restarting through the finder?
  2. macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2003
    Don't use the power button. Use the finder.

    I GUESS when the computer shuts down/restarts "normally" it performs some quick tasks before shutting down that aren't performed on a forced restart, though I don't know if a power button restart "hurts" the computer. It doesn't seem as good for the system as a normal restart though.

    Anyone know FOR SURE if anything bad happens by having to force restart using the power button?
  3. Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    I also don't know if there's any actual difference between the two with respect to the well-being of a Mac but I was once told of a sleeping analogy. It's for Windows but what the hey. If you use Explorer to shut down Windows, it's like brushing your teeth, saying your prayers (if that's what you do) and tucking yourself into bed and calmly drifting off to sleep. On the other hand, pushing the Reset button is kinda like being hit on the back of the head with a hammer and getting knocked out.

    The guy who told me this had a fairly good knowledge of PCs so I'm guessing the Finder/Explorer is the better way to shut down computers.
  4. macrumors 6502a

    May 13, 2005
    I dont have a mac, buying one soon but...

    On modern PC's something called Advanced Power Management (APM) means that when you press the power button, the machine starts the shutdown just like if you prest menu shutdown. If you press and hold the button it does a hard reset - this does not allow windows to close programs and save settings, it may end up corrupting files beyond repair so is not good.

    I guess this is probably the same for macs, can anyone say if it is?
  5. macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    If you push the power button lightly, OS X will bring up a dialogue box asking if you want to Shutdown, Restart, Sleep or Cancel. Very handy when you lift the Powerbook off your lap and accidentally touch the button...

    If you hold it down, it will do a forced restart
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Aug 10, 2003
    yeah, i was thinking of the powerbook power button. also, if you have older mac keyboards, pressing the power button will bring up the same dialog.

    its definitely better to go through the dialogs/software shut down. holding down the power button is akin to pulling the power plug/battery out of a running computer. :eek:
  7. hob
    macrumors 68020


    Oct 4, 2003
    London, UK
    Why not?
  8. macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    Yes the real question here is why you can't restart via software. Perhaps a reinstall would help, or maybe it's bad hardware... but the system should be able to restart itself.

    Normally when shut down, OS X saves the most recent settings (which windows you have open, any changes you've made in the Finder that it hasn't written) so you can lose these with hard reboots, lots of times after a hard restart a bunch of windows will open that you had already closed. My only concern would be installers that require a follow-up script be run, it may not get activated correctly.
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 23, 2005
    I made a separate thread about my problem with shutting down....

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