How do I clear my web browser's cookies, cache, and history

About cache, cookies, and history

Each time you access a file through your web browser, the browser caches (i.e., stores) it. By doing this, the browser doesn't have to newly retrieve files (including any images) from the remote web site each time you click the "Back" or "Forward" buttons. You should periodically clear the cache to allow your browser to function more efficiently.

A cookie is a file created by a web browser, at the request of a web site, that is then stored on a computer. These files typically store user-specific information such as selections in a form, shopping cart contents, or authentication data. Browsers will normally clear cookies that reach a certain age, but clearing them manually may solve problems with web sites or your browser.

A browser's history is a log of sites that you visit. When you press a browser's Back button, you are moving back one entry in the history log. Browsers will normally clear their history at regular intervals, but you may want to clear it manually for privacy reasons.

For help clearing your cookies, cache, and/or history, please see the following browser specific instructions:

Internet Explorer 9, 10, 11

  • Click Tools (via the "Gear" icon) > safety > delete browsing history
  • Deselect Preserve Favorites website data, and select Temporary Internet files, Cookies, and History:
  • Click Delete

Firefox 3.5 and above for Windows

  • From the Tools menu, select Clear Recent History. Alternatively, in Firefox 4 and above, you can also click the orange Firefox button, and then select Clear Recent History from the History menu.
  • From the Time range to clear: drop-down menu, select the desired range; to clear your entire cache, select Everything.
  • Click the down arrow next to "Details" to choose what history elements to clear (e.g., check Cookies to clear cookies). Click Clear Now.

Chrome for Windows and Mac

  • In the browser bar, enter: chrome://settings/clearBrowserData
  • Select the items you want to clear (e.g., Clear browsing history, Clear download history, Empty the cache, Delete cookies and other site and plug-in data).
  • From the clear the following items from: drop-down menu, you can choose the period of time for which you want to clear cached information. To clear your entire cache, select the beginning of time.
  • Click Clear browsing data.

Safari

  • From the Safari menu, select Reset Safari
  • From the menu, select the items you want to reset, and then click Reset. As of Safari 5.1, Remove all website data covers both cookies and cache.

Firefox 3.5 and above for Mac OS X

  • From the Tools menu, select Clear Recent History.
  • From the Time range to clear: drop-down menu, select the desired range; to clear your entire cache, select Everything.
  • Click the down arrow next to "Details" to choose which elements to clear. Click Clear Now.

Mobile Safari for iPhone OS (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad)

  • To clear cache and cookies:
  • From the home screen, tap Settings, and then tap Safari.
  • At the bottom of Safari's settings screen, tap the buttons for Clear Cookies and Clear Cache. To confirm, tap Clear Cookies or Clear Cache again.
    To clear history:
  • From the home screen, tap Safari.
  • At the bottom of the screen, tap the Bookmarks icon. 
  • In the lower left, tap Clear.
  • Tap Clear History.

Android

  • To clear cache, cookies, or history:
  • Start your browser.
  • Tap Menu, and then tap More.
  • Select Settings.
  • Under "Privacy settings", select Clear cache, Clear history, or Clear all cookie data as appropriate, and then tap OK to accept (or Cancel to cancel) the deletion.


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