How to Clear Your Browser’s Cache and Cookies
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(Pocket-lint) – If you’re having a problem with your browser, clearing your cache can be a quick and easy way to fix it, with some minor inconvenience.
You can clear your cache in all browsers, whether on a desktop, Mac or laptop, or even on your phone. This logic applies to Chrome, Edge, Firefox and more.
In the following guide, we will explain how to clear your cache and delete cookies to overcome the problems you may have encountered.
What happens when you clear your cache and delete cookies
When you visit a website, your browser automatically records certain information. If you visit a site regularly, this can be useful because this caching can help the site load quickly and give you a better user experience. Images, videos and certain parts of a site can be cached to speed up loading.
At the same time, cookies save your particular user data, which can be useful if you use a site that allows you to log into an account. Cookies are also used to show you relevant advertisements and personalize your experience on the site you are on and across the web.
If you clear your cache and delete your cookies, this information is deleted and this may have repercussions. Sites you’ve visited previously may load more slowly, and you’ll have to re-enter your login information, even on sites that remembered you.
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Force refresh your browser
If you’re having trouble with a particular page, there’s a much simpler solution than clearing your cache.
It’s basically forcing a full refresh of the page you’re viewing. You already know that you can reload the page you are on by clicking the reload button on the browser bar. But that probably won’t solve your problem. So you need a complete refresh. This operation allows you to completely refresh the page you are on, including emptying the cache of this page.
This operation does not apply to the entire site. It will therefore only be useful for one page and not for the whole site if the problem is more important, but in most cases it works perfectly.
There are several ways to do this:
- On Windows – if you are using a Windows machine, press CTRL and click the reload button or press CTRL+F5 at the same time. If that doesn’t work, press CTRL+SHIFT+R.
- On Mac – when using Safari on a Mac, click SHIFT and the reload button or, for other browsers, press CMD+SHIFT+R.
How to Clear Chrome Cache
If you’re using Chrome, it’s very easy to clear your browser’s cache in seconds. The fastest way is to click CTRL+SHIFT+DEL simultaneously. This will give you direct access to the settings needed to delete your cache and cookies.
Alternatively, you can access cache settings from the Chrome menu:
- Click on the three-dot menu icon at the top right of the screen.
- Look for the option labeled “Other Tools”.
- Open it and click “Clear browsing data”.
- You then have access to the tools you need to clear the cache.
From these settings, you can erase various things within a specific time range. The default is 24 hours, but you can also choose to clear the last seven days, the last four weeks of browsing history, or all the time. You can also choose to only clear browsing history, cookies, cached images and files, or all of these.
If you need a more aggressive cleaning, click on the advanced tab to remove other items such as autofill form data, site settings, etc.
It should be noted that if you use your account to sync data across multiple browsers and machines, this process will also delete them. You will therefore need to log out of your Chrome account before proceeding with this operation.
How to Clear Firefox Cache
The procedure for clearing the Firefox cache memory is quite similar to that of Chrome. The option to clear your cache is in the browser settings.
To access these settings:
- First click on the “burger” menu of the browser, then on “Settings”.
- Look for “Privacy and Security” in the left menu.
- Then look for the section called “cookies and site data”.
- Click “Clear Data”, then select what you want to clear.
- Click “Delete”.
You can also configure Firefox to automatically delete your cache each time you close it. The settings for this can be found under “privacy and security”, then under “history”. Select this option and you will have no more saved history.
How to Clear Your Microsoft Edge Cache
Clearing cache in Edge is a bit different, as it hides a bit behind other settings. To find it:
- Click on the three-dot menu button at the top right.
- Click on “History”.
- Then click on the three-dot menu in the new history window.
- Then click on “Clear browsing data”.
- You then have the option to delete various things
Like Chrome, this browser gives you the option to choose different time periods, including last hour, last 24 hours, last seven days, last four weeks, and all time.
You can then choose to clear your cache, cookies, browsing history, passwords, etc. Select what you want to delete, then click “Erase Now”.
Written by Adrian Willings.