re·​boot | \ (ˌ)rē-ˈbüt How to pronounce reboot (audio) \

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 How to pronounce reboot (audio) \
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

Getty Images In a stroke of pure casting genius, actress Mischa Barton will be a main character on The Hills: New Beginnings when the classic MTV series is rebooted on June 24. Marie Claire, "What Was Mischa Barton Doing Before 'The Hills: New Beginnings?"," 22 June 2019 The cartoon series was rebooted back in 2002 on Cartoon Network, however the franchise has remained inactive since then, despite Sony’s efforts to get a new film into production over the past several years. Matt Mcnulty,, "Noah Centineo Opens Up About Playing He-Man: ‘It’s a Really Big Responsibility’," 19 June 2019 Following Disney’s acquisition of Fox, the X-Men will soon be rebooted as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Richard Newby, The Hollywood Reporter, "Who Can Play the X-Men Now?," 7 June 2019 Stay at the Captain Whidbey, a historic inn originally built in 1907 that was just rebooted by design-minded brothers Matt and Mike French, and their friend Eric Cheong, who was formerly head of design with Ace Hotels and Roman & Williams. Mark Ellwood, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Best Places to Visit in July," 29 May 2019 This makes the show less an act of early reality-TV voyeurism, in which frumpy (usually) straight men in New York City are rebooted in ways more becoming of a cosmopolitan city-dweller, and more a show about empathy in the heart of flyover America. Joshua Rivera, GQ, "Queer Eye Is Good Because Straight Men Are Lost," 19 June 2018 The easiest way to do that would be to reboot the X-Men series entirely, or at least recast characters. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "Let's Talk About the Ending of Dark Phoenix," 7 June 2019 Jurassic World rebooted Jurassic Park, the popular trilogy that adapted the best-selling Michael Crichton novel. Borys Kit, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Jurassic World 3' In the Works, Sets 2021 Release Date," 21 Feb. 2018 The Disney drive to reboot its animated classics with a combination of live action and CGI continues here. Gary Thompson,, "It’s blockbuster season: Here are the movies you need to see this summer," 5 June 2019

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.

See More

First Known Use of reboot


1971, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1980, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about reboot

Dictionary Entries near reboot








Statistics for reboot

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reboot

The first known use of reboot was in 1971

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for reboot



English Language Learners Definition of reboot

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

Keep scrolling for more

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

Comments on reboot

What made you want to look up reboot? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to form ideas or theories about something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!