Recently my main computer freezes up more often, and instead of giving him the hard treatment by pushing the power button, I'd rather reboot him gently.

So I grab my laptop, fire up Terminal and login to my main computer.

ssh username@ip-address  

I enter my password and that’s how far I come every time. I know that I can kill single processes, but when I try the reboot or restart command, my laptop reboots, not the main computer which I logged into via ssh.

I think it is possible, so this goes out to the advanced terminal user (I'm a beginner).

1 Answer 1


Once you've logged in via ssh then you need to use shutdown with the -r flag (for restart):

$ ssh username@ip-address
$ sudo /sbin/shutdown -r now

Or, to do it all in one command:

$ ssh username@ip-address sudo /sbin/shutdown -r now
  • 7
    you can also type it all in one line "ssh user@host sudo /sbin/shutdown -r now" Mar 17, 2011 at 19:14
  • 1
    Thank you guys - works flawless and saves me some time. Luckily my computer hasn't had any freezes lately.
    – patrick
    Mar 19, 2011 at 20:29

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