How to Clear a Browser Cache

By learning to clear the cache, you are freeing up space on your computer’s memory. Thus, enabling it to perform well and also safeguarding your system against security and privacy threats. Your browser stores all the information you access with it and sometimes an overload of this data can cause the browser and machine to slow down. Information regarding web pages, downloaded content, images, texts, and other files are stored in it and it needs to be cleared on a regular basis. Typically, this information is stored in a folder called ‘Temporary Internet Files’. Here are some of the browsers and steps to clear cache from them.

Internet Explorer

  • Open Internet Explorer and click on the ‘Tools’ menu. Choose the ‘Delete Browsing History’ menu.
  • Alternately, open Internet Explorer and press ‘Ctrl + Shift + Delete’. This will open the ‘Delete Browsing History’ window.
  • Tick against the option that says ‘Temporary Internet Files’.
  • Now click on ‘Delete’ to clear the cache.

Mozilla Firefox

Follow these instructions if you are using version 3.6 or higher

  • Open Firefox and click on the ‘Tools’ tab. Select ‘Clear Recent History’.
  • Alternately, you can also open the ‘Clear Recent History’ window by opening Firefox and pressing ‘Ctrl + Shift + Delete’.
  • You need to select ‘Everything’ from the box beside the option ‘Time Range to Clear’.
  • Click on ‘Details’ and then select ‘Cache’.
  • By pressing ‘Clear Now’ you are clearing the cache from Firefox.

Note that this method will only work for version 3.6 or higher. For older versions follow these instructions.

  • Open Firefox and click on the ‘Tools’ tab. Select ‘Clear Private Data’.
  • You can also open the ‘Clear Private Data’ window automatically by opening the browser and then pressing ‘Ctrl + Shift + Delete’.
  • Select the box next to ‘Cache’ and then click on ‘Clear Private Data now’.

Google Chrome

  • Open Chrome and click on the Tools menu.
  • Click on ‘Options’. In the new window that opens, select the ‘Under the Hood’ tab and then select ‘Clear Browsing Data’.
  • Select the box next to ‘Empty the Cache’ and then click on ‘Clear Browsing Data’.
  • You can also set the time period for deletion by selecting the appropriate option from the drop-down box.

Macintosh

If you are using Mac, the process will be slightly different.

  • If you are using Safari 3.0 or higher, go to a non-LexisNexis page on Safari.
  • Click on ‘Safari’ menu and then on ‘Empty Cache’.
  • You will see a window to confirm your decision. Click on the ‘Empty’ button.

If you are using Safari 4.0, you must follow the same steps. But, instead of ‘Empty Cache’ option you will see ‘Reset Safari’.

  • If you are using Firefox 3.5 or higher on Macintosh, go to a non-LexisNexis page and click on ‘Tools’ in the menu bar.
  • Select ‘Clear Recent History’ and select ‘Everything’ from the drop-down box beside the ‘Time Range to Clear’ option.
  • Open the drop-down box under ‘Details’ and select ‘Cache’.
  • Click on ‘Clear Now’ and then click on OK.

How to Make Firefox Load Pages Faster

Mozilla Firefox is the best web browser on the web currently, with the largest user base in the world. Though it’s facing competition from new web browsers like Google Chrome, it has still managed to stay ahead in popularity. There are ways to make this browser work faster, than it already is. Making a few ‘under-the-hood’ changes in the browser’s settings can really make it load pages quickly and even accelerate downloads.

Tips For Making Mozilla Firefox Work Faster

Just like fine tuning a car engine makes it run faster, changing some under-the-hood settings can make a web browser like Mozilla Firefox, work efficiently. To make it start quickly, set its priority to ‘high’, through the task manager.

You might know about clearing history and other basic stuff, but what I will now show you, is going to change its working at a deeper level. Here are some tweaks that can reduce web page loading time and accelerate download speeds.

Pipelining Trick
A web page loads after the browser has sent a request to the server that hosts it. Normally any browser, including Firefox, waits for a considerable time before it sends another request for a web page, if the answer to a previous one is delayed.

This delays the loading time of web pages. If a feature called ‘pipelining’ is enabled, the browser sends multiple requests to the server and increases the chances of the pages getting quickly loaded. To enable pipelining, do the following. Type ‘about:config’, (without single quotes) in the web browser and press enter. A message will pop up, warning you of system instability, if changes in settings are made through the ‘about:config’ function. Don’t worry about it and just click ok.

You will see a list of settings in front of you. Type ‘Ctrl + F’ and locate the following settings: ‘network.http.pipelining’ and ‘network.http.proxy.pipelining’. Double click on both and set their boolean values to ‘True’. Next, locate ‘network.http.pipelining.maxrequests’ and set its value to 8 by double clicking on it. In most cases, enabling pipelining decreases loading time.

Reduce Web Page Rendering Delay
To reduce the rendering time of web pages, there is a change that you can make in the ‘content notify interval’, which is normally set to 0.12 second. This is the interval after which the browser updates whatever new data it has received from a web site. This may delay the web page rendering due to frequent updating. If the content notify interval is made longer than usual, rendering will become faster. Here is what you will need to do.

Again type ‘about:config’ in the address bar and right click to create a new integer variable. Name it as ‘content.notify.interval’ and set it’s value to be 500000. Since these values are in microseconds, you are changing the interval to 0.5 seconds effectively. Then, again right click on the page, to create a boolean variable named ‘content.notify.ontimer’ and set its value to ‘true’.

Block Out Flash
Flash animations of advertisements can greatly delay the loading of a web page. To make Firefox work efficiently, you can install an extension tool called Flashblock, that can block out the loading of flash animations by default and gives you the option of loading only those flash applets, that you find useful.

Make Firefox Load Faster
Another hack that can improve performance is tweaking the content switch threshold loading time. Type ‘about:config’ in the address bar again and right click to create an integer variable named ‘content.switch.threshold’ and set its value to 250000 and you are done. After a quarter of a second, the browser will go into a low frequency interrupt mode, in which it gives top priority to page loading.

Increase Browser Cache Size
Firefox, like any web browser, stores certain pages in its cache while browsing. Once those pages are stored, it can load them quickly next time. To increase cache size, again go through ‘about:config’ and create a new integer variable by right clicking and name it ‘browser.cache.memory.capacity’ and set the value to ‘65536’. On restarting your browser, the larger cache will make it work faster.

Other than this, refrain from adding unnecessary add-ons and themes, as they can delay page loading. Keep the browser as lightweight, as possible.

If these tweaks do not work, you always have the option of reverting back to default settings. Implementing these techniques will definitely help speed up your work online. These minor changes in the Firefox settings will definitely help in reducing loading delay. Ultimately of course, greater Internet bandwidth will definitely make your browser run at lightning speed. There is no substitute for that.