boot my laptop

  • liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    I think we say "boot up" rather than simply "boot" but I'm no computer expert. Usually I turn my laptop on, sometimes I have to reboot if it goes wrong.


    Senior Member
    USA English

    Ooo, a question about computers. I love that.

    I think it is perfectly ok to boot, boot up, and reboot (restart) a computer. It doesn't need to be a personal computer, the term started with other computers.

    The terms boot, comes from bootstrap. In the early days of computers it was a big deal to get the operating system software (operational software) into the device (computer hardware) to make it do something useful. You would manually enter a small program, that would allow the computer to load a larger program from some storage device. The small program was called a bootstrap loader. Eventually the small bootstrap loader was built into the computer hardware.


    Senior Member
    Yes, and the reason the small program was called a bootstrap was an allusion to the phrase "pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps", as far as I know. (I started work in the days when the bootstrap program was launched using a sequence of switches on the front of the computer, each switch represent one bit in a byte-long address. We've come a l-o-n-g way. :) )
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