How to Clear Internet Cache on Popular Mac Browsers

Technology and computing have introduced the term ‘cache’ which, at this point, everyone who owns a computer has heard of. A surprising number of users, however, have never been properly introduced to the purpose and meaning of cache.

What is Cache?

Cache is place on your computer where active data is temporarily stored to shorten access times.

In other words, cache keeps data that is frequently requested and accessed by the system. It is, therefore, saved in dedicated quick-to-access storage to reduce the time taken to retrieve the data. Results? Better latency and improved I/O (input/output). This has a direct impact on app performance as most applications are dependent upon input and output operations.

Web Browser Cache

In web browsers, for example, frequently visited webpages are cached to improve performance. To load a webpage, your browser will then be able to access locally stored data, instead of having to request it be sent again. To see cached data at work, try clicking “return” to go back to the previous page. Your browser will be able to recover most of the files it requires from cache. It will also read cache at a far quicker rate than reading the files from the webpage again.

Why Do You Need to Clear Cache?

While cache is beneficial by design, it isn’t perfect. Its imperfections can lead to an opposite effect and cause issues with forms, logins or even entire webpage data. This happens when cached data gets outdated or altogether corrupted. The browser then wastes time trying to fetch corrupted data or reading an old item from the cache. An immediate solution to the issue is to clear out cache and let your browser rebuild a new one. With the help of MacFly Pro you can erase all browser data regardless of which one you’re using. The long way around, however, is to do things manually.

How to Clear Cache in Safari

clear cache safari
  • Select and open Safari browser
  • Click on Safari menu in Mac menu bar and choose Preferences (or hold Command-,)
  • Switch to Advanced tab and check the box next to Show Develop menu in menu bar
  • Have Safari selected and get back to menu bar
  • Choose Develop menu and click Empty Caches (or hold Command-Option-E shortcut to delete Safari cache)
  • Refresh your webpages for Safari to rebuild cached data

How to Clear Cache in Google Chrome

erase cache google chrome mac
  • Select and open Google Chrome browser
  • Click on Google Chrome menu in Mac menu bar and choose Clear Browsing Data (or hold Command-Shift-Delete)
  • Choose Basic or switch to Advanced tab and check the box next to Cached images and files
  • Optional: Select other values you want to remove
  • Click on Clear Data empty cache in Google Chrome

How to Clear Your Cache in Firefox

clear cache mozilla firefox mac
  • Select and open Mozilla Firefox browser
  • Click on Firefox menu in Mac menu bar and choose Preferences (or hold Command-,)
  • Switch to Privacy & Security tab and scroll down to Cached Web Content
  • Hit Clear Now to erase browser cache
  • Optional: Check the box next to Override automatic cache management and set value to limit Firefox cache size

How to Clear Cache in Opera Browser

opera mac clear cache
  • Select and open Opera browser
  • Click on Opera menu in Mac menu bar and choose Clear Browsing Data (or hold Command-Shift-Delete)
  • Check the box next to Cached images and files
  • Optional: Select other temporary items you want to remove
  • Click Clear Browsing Data to erase Opera cache

How to Clear Cache in Internet Explorer

clear cache internet explorer mac

This one goes out to those of you using Parallels, Boot Camp or any other way of running Windows on your Mac. If you happen to use Internet Explorer and need to clean up your browsing history, follow these steps:

  • Open Internet Explorer
  • Click on the Gear Icon to access Tools, select Safety > Delete browsing history (or hold Ctrl-Shift-Delete)
  • Uncheck Preserve Favorites website data and check Temporary Internet files
  • Optional: Select other temporary items that you want to remove
  • Click Delete and confirm you want to erase the data

On a Final Note

Caching is used by internet browsers to store copies of visited webpages. These copies are then used to render the pages when they are re-visited. It speeds up browsing speed a great deal. Therefore, clearing cache is only necessary when it snowballing to ridiculous sizes, or you start experiencing issues with frequently visited pages.

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