This page will be about clearing a browser’s cache. I will give instruction concerning Edge, Chrome, and Firefox.
Table of Contents
Why Clear the Cache?
In short, clearing your cache fixes problems. It is one of those troubleshooting steps we use when users have trouble. More applications are cloud hosted these days and run from the browser. That means we need to understand troubleshooting browsers more than we had to in the past.
Your browser caches information in order to be efficient. This saves you time because it makes pages load faster. They load faster because the page does not download the resources every single time you access a particular site. So the cache is an area on your drive that holds this information for you. It can include pictures, logos, fonts, and code.
You clear the cache of the browser you are using when a basic operation of that browser fails. Why does it fail, you may ask? Well, it typically fails when those resources that have been cached are changed. When they are changed, there is a mismatch in information. Browsers don’t know what to do at that point. This is a simplistic explanation, but good enough for us.
Clearing the Cache in Edge
Press the <3-dot icon> in the upper right of the Edge browser page
Select <settings> near the bottom of the menu that pops up
Select <privacy, search, and services> near the top
Select <choose what to clear> tab
Select the buttons of <browsing history and cached images and files>
Those two selections will get most of the data cleared in order to fix issues. There are other interesting items on this menu which are useful for other activities but not required.
Clearing the Cache in Chrome
Select the <3-dot icon> in the upper right of the Chrome browser
Select <settings> which is toward the bottom of the menu that pops up
On the far left, select <Privacy and security>
In the middle of the window, select <Clear browsing data>
In the window that pops up, unselect <cookies and other site data>
Select <clear data> in the bottom right of that small window
We could have left <cookies and other site data> selected to remove it as well. However, this will often cause more issues for users. The main thing we wanted to do was clear the cache, which we did.
Clearing the Cache in Firefox
Select the <3-bar icon> in the top right of the Firefox browser
Select <settings> towards the bottom of the menu
On the far left menu, select <Privacy & Security>
On this page scroll down a little and find <Cookies and Site Data> in bold text
On the first line in this section, select the <Clear Data…> button
In the menu that pops up, unselect <Cookies and Site Data>
Make sure <Cached Web Content> is still selected
As in the previous section, we do not want to clear cookies unless the user is more advanced and does not mind. I leave this up to them, though. The main issue is in clearing cached web content.
In this article, examined what cached content is. Then we talked about why we would want to clear the cache on any browser. Last, we went over the steps in actually clearing the cache in the major browsers.