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Reboot

Reboot, The
Reboot (restarting the computer system) is an all-time techie favorite suggestion for all sorts of a computer problems. Reboot returns all the software and most of the hardware to some known initial state, thus eliminating any intermittent problems.
How to properly reboot a system
If you are troubleshooting some major problem, you sometimes need a proper reboot procedure.
  1. Shut down. Everything.
    1. Shut down the computer
    2. Shut down all the peripherals which have their own power. This includes external hard drives, CDROMs, printers.
    3. Some say that the component is properly shut down only if there is a visible discontinuity in its power line. That means you pull plugs from their outlets for all components.
    4. Note that LED lights may be still blinking for about a minute after you cut the power. This is normal.
  2. Connections.
    1. Disconnect data cables for all the peripherals you do not need (read - everything except keyboard, mouse, and monitor).
    2. If you are going to recover data from the external hard drive, remove and then reconnect its data cable. Ensure proper connection.
  3. Turn on.
    1. Peripherals first. Turn on devices which have their own power. There should really be a small number of these.
    2. Once the peripherals are turned on, wait for them to complete whatever initialization they may need. A couple of minutes is typically enough.
    3. Turn on the computer itself.
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