Microsoft DOS shutdown command

Updated: 09/15/2017 by Computer Hope

About shutdown

The shutdown command allows you to shutdown a Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, or 10 computer from the command line, as well as perform additional features that are not available through Windows.

Note: The shutdown command shuts down the command line window AND Windows. If you only want to close the command line window (MS-DOS) see our steps on how to close a command line window.

Availability

The shutdown command is an external command available in the below Microsoft Windows operating systems as shutdown.exe.

Windows XP
Windows Vista
Windows 7
Windows 8
Windows 10

Syntax

Windows 8 syntax

Usage: shutdown [/i | /l | /s | /r | /g | /a | /p | /h | /e | /o] [/hybrid] [/f] [/m \\computer][/t xxx][/d [p|u:]xx:yy [/c "comment"]]

No args Display this message (same as /?)
/i Display the graphical user interface (GUI).
This must be the first option.
/l Log off. Note: The /l switch cannot be used with /m or /d options.
/s Shutdown the computer.
/r Full shutdown and restart the computer.
/g Full shutdown and restart the computer. After the system is rebooted, restart any registered applications.
/a Abort a system shutdown. But can only be used during the time-out period.
/p Turn off the local computer with no time-out or warning. Can be used with /d and /f options.
/h Hibernate the local computer. Can be used with the /f option.
/hybrid Performs a shutdown of the computer and prepares it for fast startup.
Must be used with /s option.
/e Document the reason for an unexpected shutdown of a computer.
/o Go to the advanced boot options menu and restart the computer.
Must be used with /r option.
/m \\computer \\computer Specify the target computer.
/t xxx Set the time-out period before shutdown to xxx seconds. The valid range is 0-315360000 (10 years), with a default of 30. If the timeout period is greater than 0, the /f parameter is implied.
/c "comment" Comment on the reason for the restart or shutdown. Maximum of 512 characters allowed.
/f Force running applications to close without forewarning users. The /f parameter is implied when a value greater than 0 is specified for the /t parameter.
/d [u] [p]:xx:yy

Provide the reason for the restart or shutdown.

Options:

p - indicates that the restart or shutdown is planned.
u - indicates that the reason is user defined.

If neither p nor u is specified, the restart or shutdown is unplanned.

Reasons:

xx - is the major reason number (positive integer less than 256).
yy - is the minor reason number (positive integer less than 65536).

Windows Vista and 7 syntax

Usage: shutdown [/i | /l | /s | /r | /g | /a | /p | /h | /e] [/f] [/m \\computer][/t xxx][/d [p|u:]xx:yy [/c "comment"]]

No args Display this message (same as -?)
/i Display the graphical user interface (GUI).
This must be the first option.
/l Log off. The /l switch cannot be used with /m or /d options.
/s Shutdown the computer.
/r Shutdown and restart the computer.
/g Shutdown and restart the computer. After the system is rebooted, restart any registered applications.
/a Abort a system shutdown during the time-out period.
/p Turn off the local computer with no time-out or warning. Can be used with /d and /f options.
/h Hibernate the local computer. Can be used with the /f option.
/e Document the reason for an unexpected shutdown of a computer.
/m \\computer \\computer Specify the target computer.
/t xxx Set the time-out period before shutdown to xxx seconds. The valid range is 0-315360000 (10 years), with a default of 30. If the timeout period is greater than 0, the /f parameter is implied.
/c "comment" Comment on the reason for the restart or shutdown. Maximum of 512 characters allowed.
/f Force running applications to close without forewarning users. The /f parameter is implied when a value greater than 0 is specified for the /t parameter.
/d [u] [p]:xx:yy

Provide the reason for the restart or shutdown.

Options:

p - Indicates that the restart or shutdown is planned.
u - Indicates that the reason is user defined.

If neither p nor u is specified, the restart or shutdown is unplanned.

Reasons:

xx - The major reason number (positive integer less than 256).
yy - The minor reason number (positive integer less than 65536).

Windows XP Syntax

Usage: shutdown [-i | -l | -s | -r | -a] [-f] [-m \\computername] [-t xx] [-c "comment"] [-d up:xx:yy]

No args Display this message (same as -?)
-i Display GUI interface, must be the first option
-l Log off (cannot be used with -m option)
-s Shutdown the computer
-r Shutdown and restart the computer
-a Abort a system shutdown
-m \\computername Remote computer to shutdown/restart/abort
-t xx Set timeout for shutdown to xx seconds
-c "comment" Shutdown comment (maximum of 127 characters)
-f Forces running applications to close without warning
-d [u] [p]:xx:yy The reason code for the shutdown
u is the user code
p is a planned shutdown code
xx is the major reason code (positive integer less than 256)
yy is the minor reason code (positive integer less than 65536)

Shutdown examples

Note: As may or may not be apparent by reviewing the above syntax, the earlier version of the shutdown command uses a dash (-) instead of forward slash (/) for the options.

shutdown -r -c "Rebooting for latest updates."

This would display a Windows System Shutdown window for 30 seconds, warning the user that the computer is going to shutdown and then restart the computer.

shutdown -i

Ran from either the command line or from the Windows run line, this option would open the remote shutdown dialog window.

shutdown /h

Place the computer in hibernation mode in Windows Vista, 7, or 8.

shutdown /l

Immediately logs off the current user in Windows Vista, 7, or 8.

shutdown /s /t 60

Shuts down the computer after 60 seconds.

shutdown /s /m \\PC123 /t 20

Will shut down remote computer name "PC123" after 20 seconds.

shutdown /s /t 45
 
shutdown /a

The first command will initiate a computer shutdown after 45 seconds. The second command will abort the computer shutdown, if executed within the shutdown timeout period, which is 45 seconds in this example.