How Do I Power off DigitalOcean Droplet

How do I safely power cycle (reboot) my server?

Restarting your droplet is a very simple process.

To safely shutdown your server

  1. Log in to your Droplet as the root user and execute:
    shutdown -h now

    This, will shut down your server down correctly and flush any pending changes to the disk and then terminate the droplet.

  2. Visit the control panel and select your droplet, then the option to power on your droplet.

To reboot in one command

  1. Log in to your Droplet as the root user and execute:

    This, will do the same as the step above without the need to login to DigitalOcean and manually boot the server.

How to force Shut down?

To force your droplet to shut down so you can reboot it log in to Digital Ocean and select the droplet you wish to shut down.  Press the “power off” switch.

important Warning: This will be similar to pulling the plug on a running computer and may lead to drive corruption. Always check the server is okay once powered back on. Only do this as a last resort.

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How do you restore a DigitalOcean Snapshot?

So the worse has happened and you need to restore your droplet to an older snapshot.  First, if you’re using SnapShooter make sure you pause backups.

Then you need to login to your DigitalOcean account. We don’t allow you to restore snapshots from SnapShooter as a added layer of security. Once you login you need to locate the correct droplet you wish to restore.

Once you’re on the droplets settings page you need to find Snapshots on the left menu.

You need to find the snapshot you wish to restore.

Once you have the correct snapshot use the more drop-down and select restore droplet

Once you confirm your droplet will be restored to your Snapshot. Once your happy don’t forget to resume backups on your droplet in SnapShooter.

Are DigitalOcean snapshots destroyed after restoring them?

No snapshots are not destroyed when a snapshot is restored. They are kept for as long as your retention policy is set for.

If you are using SnapShooter to manage your droplet and you need to restore your Digital Ocean it can be worth pausing backups to make sure your old backups are not destroyed until your happy you have fixed the issue.

How to pause backups

  1. Login to SnapShooter
  2. Select the droplet you wish to pause

  3. On the top right press the pause symbol
  4. You should see the confirmation message

    Your droplet snapshot schedule have been paused

  5. Your droplet is now paused and will have a status of paused. No more backups will be scheduled and no old backups will be removed.

How to unpause/resume Backups

  1. Login to SnapShooter
  2. Select the droplet you wish to resume
  3. On the top right press the play symbol
  4. You should see the confirmation message

    Your droplet snapshot schedule have been resumed

  5. Your droplet is now resumed and will have a status of activated. Backups will continue on scheduled and old backups will be removed based on your retention policy.

Does DigitalOcean shutdown the droplet to take snapshot or backup?

The simple answer is no, DigitalOcean does not require you to turn off your droplet to take a snapshot or backup.

In the past, DigitalOcean did require the server to be shutdown first. You used to have to shut down, take snapshot and reboot. Which is a process anyone running a server does not want to do, luckily now you can keep them running.

SnapShooter’s Process

At SnapShooter we do not turn on or off servers so we will take a snapshot in the current state your server is in. You may find a snapshot takes a little bit longer to take a snapshot while online. Snapshots also take a longer if your server is under heavy load. From experience, we don’t notice the servers performance drop while taking snapshots.


Can you download DigitalOcean Snapshots?


Sorry, you can’t download DigitalOcean Snapshots

Unfortunately, you are unable to download your DigitalOcean snapshots and backups outside of the DigitalOcean environment. They have not made this feature available. There has been talking about making it possible but we have not seen DigitalOcean make any steps towards making this possible.

You can do a lot with DigitalOcean snapshots within their network. Create new droplets from Snapshot, restore existing droplets to snapshot and moving snapshot across data centres.


We have a sister product called Backup Stream that can take downloadable snapshots of any linux using a streaming backing method. It’s in closed beta but you can join the waiting list here


Here at SnapShooter we find that snapshots are an extremely powerful way to protect droplets and volumes. Recovering a server is extremely fast compared to restoring from an external source, network lag is very real when your moving GB’s of data in a hurry (especially when uploading from a consumer ISP connection). We also value the importance of not putting all your eggs in one basket. We recommend to all our customers and DigitalOcean customers to also create off-site backups.

Here is our recommended a list of articles created by the Digital Ocean community to get you started.