Does it work/ Is it working ?

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Senior Member
Hi all,

Can anyone please tell me how to use the following sentences correctly?

1. Is it working?
2. Does it work?

I think the first one is used when something that is currently being used.
For example: Is your computer working?

And then the second one is used when we are talking about a way of doing something.
For example: The computer isn't working. After you reboot the computer. I would ask "Does it work?"
And "it" refers to rebooting the computer.

Am I correct? Or can someone help me with this question

Thank you very much.
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    First ...
    A: Is your computer working? Mine isn't.
    B: Yes, my computer is working. Why don't you try rebooting?

    Second ...
    A: Ok, you've rebooted your computer. Is it working?
    B: No, it's still not working. Do you have a hammer?

    The "it" in the second example refers to the computer, not the rebooting process. For that, you'd need this conversation:
    A: Ok, you've rebooted your computer. Did it help? / Did it work?
    B: No, the computer's still not working.


    Senior Member
    Thank you Copyright,

    Now I understand the first one.
    What I don't understand is the second one. So are there any occasions that people would say " Does it work?" Because I remember that I hear it quiet often, but I just can't think of any.


    Senior Member
    American English
    I should have covered that -- yes, you can certainly say "Does it work?" In this case, where you've just rebooted the computer in the hopes of fixing a problem, a "time" word would help: "Does it work now?"

    Having said that, I still prefer "Is it working now?" but that may be a personal preference.
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