If you are a regular PC or laptop user, there is perhaps nothing more annoying than periodic rebooting of your device. This is not only unpleasant, but it also causes you to lose an important work in progress.
If you're having trouble with your computer randomly restarting and want answers, you've come to the right place. This article will share tips to fix the issue on Windows 10, 7 and Mac. Learn how to easily regain control of your device.
Random reboot of Windows 10 PC
If your Windows 10 restarts as soon as you open a program, don't worry. Many users encounter the same problem. Below are the most common fixes to Windows 10 random reboot issue.
Disable auto-restart feature
A common reason for a computer to randomly restart is a feature that tells it to. Check if this is the problem by following the steps below:
- Type "This PC/My Computer/Computer" in the search box next to "Start".
- Right click on the result.
- Go to “Properties”.
- Go to “Advanced system settings”, then “Settings…”.
- Uncheck the “Automatically restart” option and press “OK”.
You have now disabled the feature that randomly restarts your computer. Keep working on your PC to see if the issue is resolved.
Disable automatic driver updates
There might be an automatic driver update that requires you to restart your PC every time. If you are sure that your drivers are installed correctly, you can disable the automatic driver update feature.
- Go to the Windows search bar and enter "Advanced settings".
- Select "Show advanced settings" from the results.
- Go to "Hardware", then "Device Installation Settings".
- Check "No (your device may not work as expected)" and select "Save changes".
Adjust power settings
Another reason your computer may restart is because the power settings are not configured correctly. Here's how to reconfigure the setting to hopefully fix the problem:
- Enter “Power Options” in your Windows 10 search box.
- Select "Change power plan" or similar items in power settings.
- Select "Change advanced power settings".
- Stay on the “Balanced” section and click on “Processor Power Management”.
- Select “Minimum CPU State” and set it to 5% or even 0%.
- Click on “Apply”, then on “OK”.
If your computer continues to restart after changing the power options, skip to the next section.
Update your BIOS
Updating the BIOS is another way to fix random Windows issues. Just go to your motherboard manufacturer's website and get the latest BIOS version. It is essential to consult the motherboard manual to obtain the correct version. Otherwise, you risk damaging your computer. If you're not sure which BIOS you need, it's best to contact a professional.
Check for overheating
If your PC is overheating, it can lead to occasional restarts. You can check your computer's temperature by accessing the BIOS or third-party software. Additionally, your device may require cleaning with pressurized air or dusting to clear vents or other openings of debris.
Inspect your computer for hardware issues
If none of the above suggestions work, a hardware issue may be giving you random reboots. Check the CPU (central processing unit) or power supply and make sure they are in perfect condition. If your laptop or PC is still under warranty, have it checked at your local repair shop.
Mac computer keeps restarting randomly
Mac computers are known to be resistant to many common problems for the Windows operating system. However, they are not perfect. If you're having a problem restarting your Mac, try the suggestions below.
Check your software
Make sure to install all software updates on your Mac. If the operating system indicates that an application is causing the restart, you may see a notice suggesting to move it to "Trash". Do that and see if the issue is resolved.
Also, you can isolate the cause by running your Mac in Safe Mode.
Finally, you can reinstall macOS. If the problem is not solved, check the hardware as shown below.
Check Mac Hardware
You want to start by checking your devices. If you don't have one, skip the steps below and move on to the next section.
- Shut down your Mac.
- Disconnect all printers, hard drives, and other peripherals. For desktop Mac users, leave the keyboard, monitor, and mouse connected.
- Turn on the Mac.
- Check if the device keeps rebooting.
- If so, check internal RAM and third-party hardware in the section below.
- If not, reconnect each device until you find the cause of the problem.
Check RAM and third-party hardware
Some Mac models come with removable RAM. Maybe the SSD you recently installed is not compatible with your system or installed incorrectly. Delete it if possible and run a test with the original disk or memory.
If none of the steps above help, contact Apple Support.
Windows 7 Computer Randomly Restarts
Has your Windows 7 crashed every time you open a particular program or just browse the web? Try the suggestions below to fix the problem.
Disable auto-restart feature
- Go to "Start", then "Computer".
- Right-click "Properties" and navigate to "Advanced System Settings".
- Click "Settings" in the "Startup and Recovery" section.
- Uncheck the box next to "Automatically restart" under "System failure".
- Select "OK" and continue to use the computer normally.
If the problem reappears, continue with the suggestions below.
Check for RAM issues
If there is a problem with your RAM, it can lead to random restarts of your PC. Use MemTest86 or perform a benchmarking test to find out if RAM is causing the problem.
To use MemTest86, simply download it to your computer and the application will run automatically. Run six or seven scans for accurate results. The red result means faulty RAM.
Run a benchmarking test by following the steps below:
- Open your Performance Monitor by pressing "Windows key + R" and typing "perfmon /report".
- Wait 60 seconds for the system to collect data.
The results will be visible in the “Diagnosis results” tab. There will be three sections – Information, Basic System Checks, and Resource Overview. If there is a serious issue your PC is facing, you will also see the “Warning” section. Otherwise, check for RAM issues under "Resource Overview".
Check or replace power supply
Use this step if you suspect dust or dirt may be affecting your power supply.
- Shut down the computer and unplug the system.
- Open the side cover of the PC case or the back cover of your laptop by unlocking or unscrewing. There will be a small box in one corner with a fan and a rating sticker. It's the power supply.
- Disconnect the wires connected to your motherboard.
- Unscrew and unlock the power supply once you have disconnected the cables.
- Check for blocked air passages or dust in the power supply. Clean it up and put everything back in place.
Check for overheating
Have you noticed that your computer restarts randomly after running a specific program? If so, your CPU may be working too hard and causing the device to overheat, leading to random reboots. You can use third-party software such as CPUID or your PC's built-in sensors to investigate the problem.
You can download HWMonitor PRO here. Just install it on your computer and run it. You will see a list of processes and their value in terms of temperatures. Check temperatures after running an intensive task program.
You can also use your built-in sensors. To do this, follow the steps below:
- Restart your PC or laptop.
- Press F2 when the Windows logo appears. For Dell devices, press F10.
- You will be transferred to the BIOS. Otherwise, you will see a menu with different options. Select the BIOS using your arrow keys and press "Enter" once you are there.
- Use the arrow keys to choose the H/W monitor and press "Enter". Alternatively, select "Status" and press "Enter".
The system will display temperature and voltage readings for your PC. The readings should be within limits. Otherwise, it means that your device may have an overheating issue.
To fix the overheating problem, clean your system and make sure the cooling system (fan) is in order. You may need to replace your thermal paste (a gel-like substance) or clean your heat sinks (small objects that attract and evenly distribute heat).
Computer restarts randomly during gameplay
If your computer keeps restarting while playing, you can try one of the suggestions below.
One of the most common reasons for a PC to restart while gaming is that the CPU is too busy. To prevent this from happening, you need to clean up your computer. Clean the dust in the PC and make sure the fans are working properly. If nothing changes after cleaning the fans and the CPU continues to overheat, consider changing the CPU cooler.
Check for GPU issues
If your computer mostly restarts while you're playing a game, the problem may be with your GPU (graphics processing unit). Unplug your GPU from the device and use the system's integrated graphics. If the computer no longer restarts, it means that you should have your graphics card checked.
Also, always make sure you have a proper cooling system and perform regular driver updates.
Take back control of your PC
There is hardly anything more annoying to computer users than random reboots. The problem is irritating but also easily resolvable in most cases. This article has provided you with solutions for your Windows or Mac devices to prevent reboots from happening again.
Which method worked best for you? Did you have to replace your GPU? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.