Windows

3 Easy Ways to Restart Your Computer Over the Internet

Christian Cawley Updated 13-01-2020

Gone out and left your PC running? Need to reboot the system remotely, perhaps to exit a running program? Several options are available for remotely restarting a Windows computer, using built-in tools and third-party apps.

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Let’s look at three ways you can remotely restart a PC running Windows 10.

1. How to Remotely Restart a Computer With the IP Address

Shutdown and restart your PC remotely via PowerShell

The first way to remotely restart a computer is specifically for users on the same network. For example, you might have left your laptop running in the dining room but are now using the desktop upstairs.

To shut down remotely, use the Windows shutdown.exe tool. The basic use of this tool is straightforward, but several functions are available so that you can tailor the shutdown command.

Start by opening the PowerShell tool. Right-click Start, then select Windows PowerShell.

Essentially, from a command prompt or an application, you can issue the shutdown command using the syntax: shutdown /r /f /m \\[remotecomputerIP] -t 00

  • /m \[remotecomputerIP]—target a specific device; substitute [remotecomputerIP] with either the network name or IP address of the computer
  • /r forces full restart
  • /hybrid—shutdown followed by fast start up, used in conjunction with /s
  • /f forces all running applications to close
  • /t 00 tells the command to restart without any time delay (zero seconds)
  • /c enables the addition of a message, such as: “The IT department is remotely restarting your computer.”
  • /? displays a full list of commands

(Most of these commands will work in the deprecated Windows Command Prompt. Simply substitute the forward slash “/” with a hyphen “-“.)

Use these commands carefully. For example, you may want to give anyone sat in front of the computer the option to cancel the reboot.

The one drawback of this approach is that you need to be connected to your remote computer with administrator privileges. When you prefer to keep tight security on your PC or server, this isn’t always easy to accomplish.

2. How to Restart Your PC Using Remote Desktop

Launch RDP on Windows

Need to restart your PC remotely but feel uncomfortable with the command line approach? Your best option here is a remote desktop.

RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) is Microsoft’s proprietary protocol for remote desktop access.

Mostly, this is used over a network. (For internet use, you’ll need to set up port forwarding on your router, covered in more detail below).

RDP is built into Windows desktops, so simply launch it from the Start menu (use the “rdp” search command).

With RDP running on your PC, input the IP address or hostname of the PC you’re remotely restarting. You’ll also need the username and password when prompted. With the remote PC connection established, use your mouse to reboot the computer in the usual way.

Other remote desktop tools The 7 Best Screen Sharing and Remote Access Software Sharing your Windows screen has many benefits. Use these free tools to share screens or gain remote access to another computer. Read More are also available. All of them can restart your PC remotely over the internet. Many of these options will also have a dedicated menu command to restart or shut down your computer with a single click.

3. Remotely Reboot Your Computer Through a Web Browser with Shutter

Restart your PC remotely with Shutter

Another way to remotely restart your computer is by installing a free application created by Denis Kozlov called Shutter.

This is a remote scheduling tool that gives you access to remote actions and events. For example, you might check CPU usage (action) or trigger a remote shut down (event). With Shutter installed on your target PC, you can perform various remote functions on your computer via your browser.

First, don’t worry about the settings on this screen because these are for when you use the application locally. However, your interest is in using Shutter as a server that gives remote access to your PC from any browser.

To set this up, click on Options > Web Interface. Here, select Enable, choose a Listen IP from the list and enter whatever port you’d like to use. Port 80 is most common since it’s the default. However, if you want added security you can use some obscure port.

Finally, set your Username and Password (required), click Save and the application is ready—it’s as easy as that!

Download: Shutter

Configure Shutter for Remote PC Restart

To use from outside of your home network, you’ll need to open a “hole” to access Shutter through your router.

To do this, open your router page (usually 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1, depending on your router’s brand) and configure port forwarding. Consult your router’s documentation for the exact steps for your router model.

Just make sure the IP and port you defined in Shutter is defined here and that it’s enabled. Once you save, the setup is complete. Now you can go to any web browser and send not only a “restart” command to your computer but also a whole list of other commands.

To access Shutter remotely, open a browser and input the IP address and port specified earlier. For example: 192.168.1.103:8080

From an external location, like a library or from work, enter the ISP-assigned external IP followed by the port. This might be: 65.xxx.xxx.122:8080. The web interface will appear after you log in with the ID and password you defined.

Not sure what your external IP is? Just visit whatismyip.com in your browser.

Note that you will need a static IP for accessing Shutter from beyond your local network. Here, you can perform various remote tasks, from shutting the PC down to muting volume or running a specific program.

To remotely restart Windows using the Shutter Web Interface, click Reboot, then Execute. Job done!

Three Smart Ways to Restart Your PC Remotely

As you can see, remotely rebooting your PC is remarkably easy with Windows 10:

  • Reboot over a network using shutdown.exe commands
  • Restart your PC with remote desktop software
  • Reboot Windows with Shutter

However you choose to reboot your PC, it’s a smart option to ensure the security on the computer is regularly updated. If you’re restarting it to prevent access, why not use one of these methods to automatically lock your Windows PC The 6 Best Methods to Lock Your Windows PC Locking your computer is essential in preventing unattended access. Here are several great ways to do so in any version of Windows. Read More ?

Explore more about: Computer Privacy, Remote Access, Remote Desktop, Twitter, VNC.

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  1. Kris
    January 15, 2020 at 4:31 am

    I get the following error message. Any idea what went wrong? Thanks for helping me out.

    "Not in a hypervisor partition (HVP=0) (VERR_NEM_NOT_AVAILABLE).

    AMD-V is disabled in the BIOS (or by the host OS) (VERR_SVM_DISABLED).

    Result code:E_FAIL (0x80004005)
    Component:ConsoleWrap
    Interface:IConsole {872da645-4a9b-1727-bee2-5585105b9eed}"

  2. Kris
    January 15, 2020 at 4:29 am

    I have correctly installed the Virtual Machine and XP mode. However, when starting up my VM session, the following failure message appears:

    "Not in a hypervisor partition (HVP=0) (VERR_NEM_NOT_AVAILABLE).

    AMD-V is disabled in the BIOS (or by the host OS) (VERR_SVM_DISABLED).

    Result code:E_FAIL (0x80004005)
    Component:ConsoleWrap
    Interface:IConsole {872da645-4a9b-1727-bee2-5585105b9eed}"

    Any ideawhat I should do to start up the VM?

  3. dragonmouth
    January 13, 2020 at 9:41 pm

    How secure are these methods? If you can do it so can the bad guys.

  4. James
    February 12, 2018 at 9:00 pm

    Remote access technology has opened a new discipline of computer support. PC support provided through remote technology is quick, reliable, and secure. Some of the remote software applications worth mentioning are remote phone access, laptop access and so on. All these can be delivered to you by darkwebsolutions dot co, visit their website today

  5. JD
    November 16, 2016 at 5:00 am

    Super thanks! Shutter is exactly what I was looking for to provide a small business user access to shutdown their own servers in case of power or aircon failure (its impossible to do with the UPS). THANK YOU!

  6. Ben
    January 26, 2015 at 4:06 pm

    Hi there,

    Very good article! I think once i have my problem solved i will use one of the above situations. However, currently my Main PC i am trying to remote too is unresponsive and when I try to connect the RDC hangs on "Configuring remote" and will not connect. am assuming there is a problem with my PC as yesterday it worked fine for many months.

    I am looking to send a command prompt remotely to shutdown -r or r but i am not able to find how to do this with an external IP. I found solutions within a local network but not externally.

    Would anyone be able to help me to tell my PC to restart remotely? I can connect to my modem so i know Internet is still live... something happened with PC and not sure what to do.

    Thank you in advance to anyone that may be able to help me.

    Thank you

  7. DV
    November 5, 2009 at 2:21 am

    Software solutions are great so long as your PC is fully operational. Hardware solutions offer a sure way to reboot a device. See http://www.RemotePowerSwitch.com for some inexpensive options.

  8. ijaz
    September 2, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    i can't understand this point.
    if i have non router then it will work or not.
    The only last step is to make sure that if you’re using a router, you open up a “hole” so that you can connect to your Shutter server through the router.

    To do this, just go to your router administration control panel (usually 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1, depending on your router’s brand) and configure port forwarding as shown here

  9. remote desktop software
    August 27, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    I didn't know about any of these options, but twitter?! I kind of used to make fun of it for not being useful... I guess I can't anymore. I'm deeply impressed.

  10. Thaw Zin Htun
    August 19, 2009 at 3:27 am

    May I know TweetMyPC user name and password,please. What can I type?

  11. wpkeeper
    June 2, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    I use logmein to remote control my PC remotely

    • Burkh
      July 2, 2009 at 10:50 am

      wpkeeper,

      I too use logmein. works great but i travel sometimes and if machine locks up (blue screen of death) i need to be able to reboot. once machine is BSOD, i don't think anything can be done except have someone on location reboot, right? I see message from scotty above, not sure if it will work - i know i could power down, but will re-applying power cause it to restart? I'll have to see...

  12. Jorge
    May 29, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    One really interesting is how to restart a remote freeze computer, I work with a computer in another country with hamachi and sometimes I have to call a person near the location just to reset the computer.

    • Scotty
      May 29, 2009 at 9:57 pm

      Jorge, I once (back in 1993) bought a power strip with a telephone interface for this purpose. It had it's own POTS line and I could call it, enter a touchtone code, and it would power the switch off / wait 20 seconds / power it back on. Just like hitting the power switch. Im sure you could do a google search and find one still. It solved my late night search for someone to go in and do it manually....

  13. Shoban
    May 29, 2009 at 9:19 am

    Thank you for the post ;-)

  14. Sankar
    May 29, 2009 at 6:21 am

    Hey Ryan,

    It's amazing. Using twitter also we can shutdown and restart our pc. It's pretty cool. I have to do research on it. Hope this works well for me. If any problem occurs, I will contact you.

    Thanks
    Sankar

    • Ryan Dube
      May 30, 2009 at 8:18 am

      Thanks Sankar - the Twitter reboot really does work well, I was pretty impressed when I tested it. Let me know how it goes!

  15. Mark O'Neill
    May 29, 2009 at 5:25 am

    You can also shut down your computer by sending a shutdown command email to a secret Gmail account (secret as in only known to you). I wrote about it on another blog.

  16. Brody
    May 29, 2009 at 10:03 am

    An inexpensive hardware solution with a password protected web interface:

    digital-loggers.com/lpc.html

    HTTP only, so you'll want to put a reverse proxy in front to add support for HTTPS.

  17. Neil Ackerman
    May 29, 2009 at 4:34 am

    Sounds like a very useful and easy method to hack into someone else's computer

  18. Peter
    May 29, 2009 at 3:50 am

    What Jeroen R said. On top of that it is very unlikely
    Now what is useful: remotely wake up a computer that is hibernating or in sleep mode.
    That is something I would find useful. After the thing wakes up I can use RDP or Web based stuff to control it and obtain something useful.

  19. Jeroen R
    May 29, 2009 at 3:16 am

    Why would you want to restart your computer over the Internet? Rebooting is for adding new hardware and you can't add new hardware over the Internet, so why would you want to reboot it? And why use all kinds of crappy tools if you can use SSH?
    Ohhh wait, you're still using Windows...

    • Ryan Dube
      May 30, 2009 at 8:16 am

      Read a few of the user comments and you'll see other reasons why people need to remotely reboot. You just need to think a bit outside the box. I know you're a Linux type, so you're used to having fewer available choices, but still... :)

  20. P
    May 29, 2009 at 3:07 am

    You can just use Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP). Port forward 3389 from your firewall to your PC and enable the remote desktop checkbox and ta-da! Now you can remote control your PC on top of simply rebooting and shutting down.

  21. Ty
    May 29, 2009 at 2:21 am

    I use logmein to remote control my PC remotely. You can do anything pretty much, even shutdown/restart the machine.

  22. matt
    May 29, 2009 at 7:10 am

    This is not a flame or troll or flame bait.
    It would be a SERIOUS security flaw to enable port forwarding for VNC on any system. It is not secure and can be cracked by a simple brute forced attack. That would leave your whole system vulnerable for takeover. Even VNC advises against it. I would also dissuade you from opening and forwarding the remote desktop/remote assistance ports.
    It is better to connect via ssh ( non standard port) and tunnel 5900.(5901 etc) or any port you want and only leave ssh open. The only port that should be forwarded by the router is a secure port only.
    SSH is not the ONLY solution, but a damn good one. This can also be accomplished by a VPN as well, but they tend to cost a fair amount and are not trivial to set up.

    For a simple ssh server that can be run on windows, rather than go through the cluster of setting up cygwin, use the Xlivecd that the university of Indiana has conveniently created and made available. It is an Xserver with SSH that need only be run as a cd IN windows. Since it is not writable is it less vulnerable. Your mileage may vary.
    Good luck. stay secure.
    xlivecd.indiana.edu/
    (even though the cd is from '04, its still far more secure than just forwarding unsecure ports.)

    • Ryan Dube
      May 30, 2009 at 8:20 am

      Thanks for the advice Matt - and your advice is certainly useful. I think for many of the end-users who aren't quite as technically savvy to be able to set up SSH as you've described, the port forwarding with an ID/Password setup is a useful option. Certainly not the most secure - but some people are willing to trade security for ease-of-use.

  23. Rejesh
    May 29, 2009 at 1:25 am

    really amazing software now only i heard this kind of software tool,, thank you for sharing this awesome software..
    pls keep update with new software collection.