How-to: Clear your browser cache
During your website development process – or later, if you are making updates or changes – it can be frustrating to view your site and still see the old content or issues. Many times, the updates have been made or posted, but you are still seeing old content due to caching, a process by which your computer browser saves certain website information on your computer’s hard drive. The browser cache helps speed up your web browsing experience by eliminating the need to download the same resources over and over for the same web page. However, sometimes your browser will continue to show the cached version of a site even after changes have been made. For this reason, it is a good idea to clear your browser cache when you encounter issues on your site or anyone else’s. It won’t always fix the issue, but it is a quick and simple step that can eliminate many headaches.
Force refresh a single page
Before you clear your entire browser cache, try a “force refresh” to bypass the cache using simple hotkeys:
- Windows and Linux browsers: CTRL + F5
- Apple Safari: Shift + Reload toolbar button
- Chrome and Firefox for Mac: Command + Shift + R
This option helps if you are experiencing issues with a single page and not an entire site or multiple web pages.
Clear browser cache for major browsers
To clear the browser cache for Google Chrome, get started by clicking the Three Dots icon in the top right of your browser window. Then, find the More Tools option and select Clear browsing data from the submenu.
To clear the browser cache for Mozilla Firefox, get started by clicking the Hamburger icon in the top right and selecting History. Then, in the menu that appears next, select Clear Recent History.
To clear the browser cache for Safari, you have two options. If you’re ok with clearing your entire browsing history (including cookies and visited pages), you can take the easy approach and just go to Safari → Clear History.
In addition to your browser cache, this will also clear your browsing history, cookies, etc. To only empty Safari’s browser cache, you’ll need to enable the Develop menu by going to Preferences → Advanced and checking the Show Develop Menu in Menu Bar box. Then, you can go to Develop → Empty Caches to clear Safari’s browser cache.
To clear the browser cache for Internet Explorer, get started by clicking the Gear icon in the top right to access the Tools menu. Then, find Safety and select Delete Browsing History from the submenu.
To clear the browser cache for Microsoft Edge, click the Three Dots icon in the top right of your browser window. Scroll down and click on Choose What to Clear. Make sure to only select the Cached data and files box to avoid clearing important information. Then, click the Clear button at the bottom.
And that’s it! Your browser cache is now empty.
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