How to Shutdown a Windows 11 PC

Shut down computer

Learn how to Shutdown your Windows 11 PC the right way and maintain your system’s performance for a long time.

Shutting down a PC is a regular task, almost all of us do that daily either after finishing our work, an 8-hour gaming session, or after some online study sessions. However, many of us still do not shut down the PC properly which might affect the longevity of electrical components and might even affect the performance of your Windows PC in the long run.

Since Windows supports more than one way to shut down a PC, we are going to show you all the ways you can do that.

Shutdown Using the Start Menu

Since many users prefer to customize their physical power key to perform a different function than Shutting Down the PC, such as sleep, hibernate, log out to name a few. Shutting Down from the Start Menu is always going to be an easy and go-to option for the users.

First, click on the ‘Start Menu’ icon present on your Windows 11 PC taskbar. Then click on the ‘Power’ icon situated on the right bottom corner of the Menu. Next, click on the ‘Shut Down’ option from the overlay menu to Shut Down your PC.


Shutdown Using the Power User Menu

Well, some call it the hidden menu and some call it the Power user menu but there is no official name for this menu. However, this menu offers you access to a long list of Windows features along with the ‘Shut Down’ option.

To access the Power User menu, right-click on the ‘Start Menu’ icon. Alternatively, you can also press the Windows key+X shortcut on your keyboard to access the menu. Then, hover over the ‘Shut down or sign out’ option from the menu and select the ‘Shut Down’ option from the overlay menu.


Shutdown Straight from the Desktop

If you don’t like the idea of navigating to a menu and clicking on the options, you can Shut Down your Windows PC straight from the Desktop without having to touch your mouse or touchpad.

To do that, click on the desktop and press the Alt+F4 key on your keyboard. This will bring up a ‘Shut Down’ window on your screen, then click the ‘OK’ button. Alternatively, hit Enter on your keyboard to Shut Down your PC.

You can also select other options such as ‘Sleep’, ‘Hibernate’, and ‘Restart’ using the Arrow keys on your keyboard and then click the ‘OK’ button. Alternatively, after navigating hit Enter to perform that action.


Shutdown Using the Security Keys

The Ctrl+Alt+Delete is dubbed as the Security Keys of Windows since they allow users to access a special screen that offers many security-related options. Furthermore, it is also at times used to interrupt a frozen application on Windows operating system.

To Shut Down this way, press the Ctrl+Alt+Delete shortcut on your keyboard to bring up the special screen on your PC. Then, click on the ‘Power’ icon from the bottom right corner of your screen and choose the ‘Shut Down’ option to Start Shutting Down your PC.


Shutdown Using the Command Prompt

If you feel comfortable summoning up Command Prompt or the majority of your time is already spent using it in your active hours; you can use it to Shutdown your Windows PC as well.

In Windows 11 you have two options to bring up the Command Prompt. First, press the Windows+R shortcut on your keyboard to bring up the ‘Run’ utility. Then type cmd and hit Enter to bring up the Command Prompt.

Otherwise, you can press the Windows+R keys on your keyboard to bring up the ‘Run’ utility. After that type wt.exe and hit Enter to bring up the Terminal on your Windows 11 PC.

Now, on the Terminal window, click on the carat icon (downward arrow) present on the window’s tab bar. Then select the ‘Command Prompt’ option from the overlay menu.

Now irrespective of your chosen option, type the shutdown /s command and hit Enter on your keyboard to initiate a Shutdown on your machine.

Note: Your Command Prompt screen might have white fonts on a black background if you have not customized it.

Along with Shutting Down, you can perform various actions along the same line using the Command Prompt. Some of those functions are listed below for your convenience:

Parameters Description Full Command
/? This will display help regarding the ‘shutdown’ command and display all the command parameters. shutdown/?
/s Shut down the computer. shutdown/s
/i This command will bring up the ‘Remote Shut down’ window on your screen. Windows will also ignore any other parameter when ‘/i’ is specified. shutdown/i
/l This will Log Off the currently active user without providing any time-out period. You will not be able to use the ‘/l’ parameter with ‘/m’ or/t’ parameters. shutdown/l
/sg This will shut down the computer, and on the next boot-up; the device will automatically signs-in and start the registered applications, then locks itself. (Automatic sign-in functionality is achieved only when the ‘Automatic Restart Sign on’ option is enabled from the Windows Settings.) shutdown/sg
/r This parameter shuts down your PC and then restarts. shutdown/r
/g The parameter will shut down and restart your PC and will automatically signs-in and start the registered applications, then locks itself. (Automatic sign-in functionality is achieved only when the ‘Automatic Restart Sign on’ option is enabled from the Settings.) shutdown/g
/m \\<computer name> This parameter shuts down a specific remote P and it cannot be used with ‘/l’ parameter. shutdown/m \\<computer name>
/a This parameter aborts a remote system shutdown only during the time-out period. The parameter must be used with the ‘/m’ parameter. shutdown/a/m \\<computer name>
/p This will turn off your local computer without any timeout and warning. The ‘/d’ and ‘/f’ parameters can be used with this parameter. If the PC does not support the power-off functionality, the ‘/p’ parameter will only shut down the system while power will remain on. (Not applicable for shutting down a remote PC.) shutdown/p
/h This will put your PC into hibernation. The only supported parameter with ‘/h’ is the ‘/f’ parameter. shutdown/h
/hybrid This will shut down your PC and prepare it for the Fast Startup on the next boot. This can only be used with the ‘/s’ parameter. shutdown/s/hybrid
/fw Use this parameter along with a shutdown or restart parameter to boot into the firmware interface of your PC (UEFI or BIOS). shutdown/r/fw
/e This parameter will enable you to take a look at all expected, unexpected, planned, and customer-defined shutdowns of your PC. shutdown/e
/o This parameter will take you to the ‘Advanced boot options’ menu and restart the device. Though this can only be used with the ‘/r’ parameter. shutdown/r/o
/f This parameter will force close all running applications without providing a warning to users. shutdown/f
/t <user-defined time (in seconds)> This sets the timeout period before shutting down as defined by the user. The range for the same is from 0 to 315360000 (10 years). The ‘/f’ parameter will be implied when setting a timeout period using the parameter. shutdown/t <user-defined time (ins seconds)>
/d [p | u:]<xx>:<yy> This enables the user to specify a reason for the shutdown or restart If ‘p’ or ‘u’ are not defined, the shutdown/restart will be denoted as unplanned. Here, the placeholders are:

p – Denotes the shutdown/restart is planned.

u – Indication of the reason being user-defined.

xx – Categorize the shutdown/restart to ‘Major’. Accepts a positive integer value, less than 256.

yy – Categorize the shutdown/restart to ‘Minor’. Accepts a positive integer value, less than 65536.
shutdown/s/d [p | u:]<xx>:<yy>
/c <comment> Enables the user to allow a detailed comment regarding the shutdown/restart. Must be used with the ‘/d’ parameter. Maximum 511 characters are supported which should always be enclosed in quotation marks. shutdown/s/d [p | u:]<xx>:<yy> /c ‘<comment>’
Source: Microsoft