re·​boot | \ (ˌ)rē-ˈbüt \

Definition of reboot

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a transitive + intransitive : to shut down and restart (a computer or program) … the annoyance of having to reboot the computer to switch operating systems …— Robert Weston If anything ever happens to the original drive, you can reboot using the cloned drive and be up and running in minutes.— Dan Frakes
b intransitive : to start up again after closing or shutting down : to boot up again waiting for a computer/program to reboot
2a transitive : to start (something) anew : to refresh (something) by making a new start or creating a new version It's probably not an overstatement to say Sandberg is embarking on the most ambitious mission to reboot feminism and reframe discussions of gender since the launch of Ms. magazine in 1971.— Belinda Luscombe reboot an old TV series
b intransitive : to start anew : to make a fresh start The interior designer's heart was telling her to reboot and downsize …— Susan Heeger


re·​boot | \ ˈrē-ˌbüt \
plural reboots

Definition of reboot (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of shutting down and restarting something (such as a computer or program) In a few cases, errors cause a headlong exit to DOS or the software ceases to operate, requiring a reboot.— George F. Hepner
2 : the act or an instance of starting (something) anew or making a fresh start In a massive reboot last fall, all 200 rooms were done up in geometric rugs and curvy leather headboards.— Jen Murphy

Examples of reboot in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

So there was some initial skepticism about introducing the character into DC's rebooted cinematic universe. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Hang on to your magical tridents, the final Aquaman trailer is here," 20 Nov. 2018 Fortunately, on Sunday, August 11, a solar eclipse in Leo gives you an opportunity to reboot your wallet. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What August's Cancer Horoscope Means for You," 30 July 2018 While Marvel rebooted the comics series this year, for most readers, it was defined by Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona’s original run, which introduced the characters in 2003. Samantha Nelson, The Verge, "Season 2 of Runaways forges a bold new path — eventually," 21 Dec. 2018 Doctor Who is now in its 11th season since the BBC rebooted the venerable sci-fi series back in 2005. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "BBC America’s long-running hit has a new Doctor and a new groove.," 20 Nov. 2018 How about a holiday special starring everyone’s favorite recently rebooted half-witch? Chilling Adventures of Sabrina adds fright into your festivities this year by replacing Christmas with the winter solstice and Christmas carols with pagan carols. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "The Best Holiday Specials to Watch (and Stream) Now," 7 Dec. 2018 News that Sabrina the Teenage Witch is being rebooted by the creators of Riverdale has made fans of the original series extremely excited. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina: Everything You Need to Know," 13 Aug. 2018 Getty Images News that Sabrina the Teenage Witch is being rebooted by the creators of Riverdale has fans of the original series extremely excited. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Everything You Need to Know About the New 'Sabrina the Teenage Witch' TV Show," 1 Aug. 2018 With an Assist from Stem Cells In the case of MS, studies show that when the immune system is rebooted later with stem cell transplants, the immune cells generally don’t launch the same misguided assault on nerves. Alice Park, Time, "Stem Cell Treatment Could Be a Game-Changer for People With MS," 19 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'reboot.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of reboot


1971, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1980, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for reboot

Last Updated

18 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reboot

The first known use of reboot was in 1971

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More Definitions for reboot



English Language Learners Definition of reboot

computers : to turn off a computer and then immediately turn it on

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More from Merriam-Webster on reboot

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with reboot

Spanish Central: Translation of reboot

Nglish: Translation of reboot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of reboot for Arabic Speakers

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