At the end of the workday, many people lock the computer - or walk away and let it lock itself. This seems pretty handy at first glance - when you return, you log in and everything is just as you left it - ready for your next session. But just as you shut down, rest and recharge every day your computer - Mac or PC - benefits from the opportunity to shut down and rest, too! But why? And it benefits who?

Ag IT recommends closing all applications and choosing to restart the computer at the end of every workday. There are many good things that happen when a computer restarts - you often hear that a reboot is the first troubleshooting step when things go wrong! A restart can clear all of the contents of your RAM in the most efficient manner possible, giving you full use on restart, and a restart closes all background processes that should have closed themselves and didn't. In essence, a restart gives you a fresh slate to start the next workday.

One of the strongest reasons for a restart is that software developers world-wide release updates to their products on a continuing basis. Rarely would a day pass without the release of some update to some product that is in use in our College. Many of these updates fix bugs or vulnerabilities that can impact your work. Microsoft and Apple regularly release updates to critical applications and to the operating systems that also safeguard and improve your computing experience. Although many application updates can be applied when you launch the application or completely in the background, updates to your operating system software (Windows 10 or OS X) are typically only applied when the computer restarts. If you don't restart your computer very often you increase the opportunity for compromise.