Clear your Internet Browser Cache

Microsoft refers to the cache as “Temporary Internet Files.” It is a folder containing copies of Web pages you’ve recently visited. When you open a new Web page, it is sent to the cache on your hard disk, so that the next time you visit the page, if it has not changed, the contents are retrieved from your hard disk rather than the Internet. The purpose of the cache is to speed up your access to Internet content.

All those files stored in your cache take up space, so from time to time, you may want to or need to clear out the files stored in your cache to free up some space on your computer or to improve the performance of some software. This is called "clearing the cache." Each browser provides its own steps for clearing the cache, as follows.

Internet Explorer 11

  1. Open Internet Explorer 11.
  2. On the very right-hand side of the browser, click on the gear icon, also called the Tools icon, followed by Safety, and finally Delete browsing history...
  3. Note: If you have the Menu bar enabled, you can instead click Tools and then Delete browsing history....
  4. In the Delete Browsing History window that appears, uncheck all options except the one labeled Temporary Internet files and website files.
  5. Click the Delete button.
  6. The Delete Browsing History window will disappear and you may notice your mouse icon go busy for a few moments.
  7. As soon as your cursor returns to normal, or you notice the "fished deleting" message at the bottom of the screen, consider your temporary Internet files deleted.

Internet Explorer 8

  1. Click the Tools menu, then click Delete Browsing History... Or you can press Ctrl+Shift+Delete to open the Delete Browsing History window.
  2. Select Temporary Internet Files.
  3. Click the Delete button on the bottom of the screen.
  4. Click OK twice to return to your browser session.

Internet Explorer 7

  1. Click the Tools menu, then click Internet Options.
  2. The Internet Options box should open to the General tab.
  3. On the General tab, in the Browsing history section, click the Delete... button. This will bring up the Delete Browsing History box.
  4. Select the "Delete files" button to delete Temporary Internet Files.
  5. After you select box(es), click the Delete button; it will prompt you to confirm you would like to delete the files. Select Yes.
  6. Confirm Internet Explorer Cache Delete.
  7. Click Yes, and then click Close and OK again.

Internet Explorer 6

  1. On the Internet Explorer Tools menu, click Internet Options.
  2. The Internet Options box should open to the General tab.
  3. On the General tab, in the Temporary Internet Files section, click the Delete Files button. This will delete all the files that are currently stored in your cache.
  4. Click OK, and then click OK again.

Google Chrome 4.x

  1. Select the Tools menu. Click the "wrench" symbol in the upper-right corner and select Options.
  2. Select the "under the hood" tab.
  3. Click the "clear the browser cache" button, making sure that "empty the cache" is checked.
  4. Click the "clear browsing data" button.
  5. Click the Close button to return to your browser.

FireFox 3.x

  1. Click Tools, which is on the top just below the title bar.
  2. Click "clear recent history."
  3. Under "time range to clear," it should show Everything.
  4. Make sure Cache box is checked.
  5. Click "Clear NOW".

Opera

  1. Select the Tools menu and click "delete private data". If your menu is not present, click the "O" and select "show menu bar".
  2. Click the Detail button.
  3. Press the Delete button.

Safari

  1. From the Safari menu, click "empty cache".
  2. When asked "Are you sure you want to empty the cache?", click Empty.
  3. Close and reopen the Safari Web browser.