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

The department said owners of certain devices should reboot them as soon as possible and that additional action globally is necessary to remediate the threat. Adam Janofsky, WSJ, "What Companies Should Know About VPNFilter," 7 June 2018 FBI Kansas City tweeted Tuesday a warning of small office and home office routers: reboot them to fend off foreign cyber actors. Max Londberg, kansascity, "Your router may have been hacked by 'foreign actors', FBI KC says. Here's what to do," 29 May 2018 If the machine is rebooted when on a local network that's not connected to the internet, the virus would resume the infection process. Bloomberg News,, "Top Microsoft exec exits amid major shakeup," 29 Mar. 2018 Boy Meets World, which ran from 1993 to 2000 on ABC and was set in the Philly suburbs, was rebooted in 2014 as Girl Meets World on the Disney Channel, running for three seasons before it was canceled. Nick Vadala,, "Could the 'Fresh Prince' get a female-led reboot?," 28 Feb. 2018 Here are some theories and thoughts about Apple’s TV strategy, which is being engineered by former Sony execs Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, hired by Apple last year to reboot its original content plans. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Google invests in Chinese e-commerce," 18 June 2018 Just in time to reboot your summer wardrobe, Lord & Taylor partnered with Walmart to create a new unique shopping experience featuring more than 125 of your favorite brands. Chazz Inniss,, "Lord & Taylor Just Teamed Up With Walmart – and Brad Goreski Did All Your Shopping for You," 11 June 2018 The agency issued a warning on Friday asking home Internet users and small business owners to reboot their routers to ward off a pernicious piece of malware called VPN Filter., "Rockland Trust expands in Worcester County," 31 May 2018 The agency issued a warning on Friday asking home Internet users and small business owners to reboot their routers to ward off a pernicious piece of malware called VPN Filter. The Washington Post,, "The FBI would like you to reboot your WiFi router," 30 May 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

16 Sep 2018

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The first known use of reboot was in 1971

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