8 Linux Shutdown Commands with Examples

In this article, we will study the eight Linux shutdown commands with examples.

Also Read: 5 Best Linux Distros for Gamming

Linux Shutdown Command Tool

shutdown [OPTION]… TIME [MESSAGE]

Besides OPTION & TIME, the above syntax states that we can also print a MESSAGE in the command line through these commands.

Options used in the shutdown commands

-r: Request the system to reboot after being brought down.

-h: Request the system to freeze or shut down after being brought down.

-H: Request the system to an only halt after being brought down.

-P: Request the system to power off after being brought down.

-c: To cancel a running shutdown after being brought down.

-k: To send a warning message and disable the logins. (will not actually bring the system down.)

Note: We need root privileges for these command executions.

1. The Basic Linux Shutdown Command

The shutdown command can also be used in the following basic form.

$ sudo shutdown 5 [sudo] password for admin: 

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:44 ...
The system is shutting off for maintenance in 5 minutes!

2. Initiating Reboot Through -r option.

The command -r can also be used to reboot the system through the shutdown command.

$ sudo shutdown -r 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:49 ...
The system is shutting off for reboot in 5 minutes!

3. Initiating Power off/halt using -h option.

Once the -h option is initiated, the system will decide whether or not to shut down or halt the system.

$ sudo shutdown -h 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:51 ...
The system is shutting off for halt in 5 minutes!

4. Insisting the System to Shut Down using -P option.

We can let the user insist that the system power off once by using the -P option.

$ sudo shutdown -P 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:53 ...
The system is Insisted to power off in 5 minutes!

5. Linux Shutdown Command to Print a Message.

Through the Linux Shutdown Command, the user can also print a custom message, so for example, the user and the admin can use these custom messages to convey all the country users a reason to shut the system down.

$ sudo shutdown 5 "System is shutting down to install new updates"

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:56 ...
The system is shutting off for maintenance in 5 minutes!

System need to shut down to install latest updates.

6. Insisting the System to Halt using -H Option.

-H option provided by the shutdown command can let the user or/and admin insist the system halt once initiated.

$ sudo shutdown -H 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:58 ... 
The system is initiating for halt in 5 minutes!

7. Using -c to Cancle the Shutdown Operation.

If the shutdown command needs to be cancelled for any scenario, you can set the time in the prompt and initiate the cancellation using the -c command.

$ sudo shutdown -c

The below way shows the command in a separate window shell affecting the shutdown.

$ sudo shutdown 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 19:59 ...
The system is initiating down for maintenance in 5 minutes!

Shutdown cancelled

8. Sending Warnings & Disable Logins through -k Option.

-k Option is used to send a warning to the system and disable it for an appointed period. Please note that this option does not actually shut down or halt the system but warns the user.

$ sudo shutdown -k 5

Broadcast message from [email protected] (/dev/pts/2) at 20:04 ...
Warning: The system is initiating down for maintenance in 5 minutes!

So, you can see the warning is printed regardless of the actual shutdown taking place in 5 minutes.

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