Clearing Cache and Cookies

What are Cache and Cookies?

Both cookies and cache are items that store information on your computer to make websites and apps you’ve visited more efficient, and also help to decrease the time it takes to load those websites and apps.

Cache Memory is the fastest memory in the computer

Cookies are small data files put on your computer that contain information such as a username and password and are used to identify your computer. Cookies are created when you connect to a site and can be used to make a shopping experience better, or to save data from a previous website visit. While most cookies are totally safe, they can also be used maliciously to spy on your online activity or even steal your personal information.

Cache (pronounced “cash”) is where a website or app adds temporary data to your computer’s memory, or to temporary memory files found on your hard drive. Your computer uses this temporary information to increase the efficiency and the speed of your computer. It does this by pulling this information from the CPU (Central Processing Unit) in your computer rather than having to load it again from the website.

Why do I need to Clear Cache and Cookies?

There are a few reasons to clear cache. One reason is that cache grows as you use your computer especially when you are on the web. When visiting an app or website for the first time cache can add files, images, and other information on your computer. The benefit is that cached data makes your computer, your browser, or your app run smoother and faster as it saves information for future visits. That might sound great, but what if you never go back to that site? Accumulating cached data can end up using a lot of disk space on your computer.

Person holding an eraser over a sheet that says Clear History, Clear Cookies, Clear Cache

What this means is that all that data can actually slow your computer down, and worse give your computer unexpected behaviors. Corrupt cache can cause glitches to happen, including making your computer crash.

A red flag to watch for is if your browser doesn’t load the new version of a website, even when you know that there have been changes on the site since your last visit. Another issue you may encounter is if a website looks like it has not been fully loaded or is formatted incorrectly .

Cache can make a site show outdated content. That is why many times if you need to get help from the helpdesk, they may ask you to clear the cache before investigating further. Deleting the cache data helps to troubleshoot and can increase the performance of your computer.

Clearing cache and cookies is something you might want to do every month to keep your computer operating at it’s best!

How Do I Clear Cache and Cookies?

If you are using Google Chrome:
• Please copy & paste this link in your browser: chrome://settings/clearBrowserData
• Check the boxes for “Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, and Cached images and files” and click “Clear Data”
• Completely close all tabs/windows and restart the browser

If you are using Firefox:
• Please copy & paste this link in your browser: about:preferences#privacy
• Under the “Cookies and Site Data” section, please click on “Clear Data.” And the click “Clear.”
• Completely close all tabs/windows and restart the browser

If you are using Safari:
• Please follow the steps here
• Click on “Manage Website Data.” Click “Remove All.”
• Completely close all tabs/windows and restart the browser

If you are using Microsoft Edge:
• Click on the “Settings and More” icon (ellipsis symbol). Click Settings.
• Under Clear browsing data, select Choose what to clear.
• Select “Browsing history, Cookies and saved website data, Cached data and files, and Tabs I’ve set aside”, and then select Clear.

If are you using Microsoft Internet Explorer:
• Select Tools (via the Gear Icon) > Safety > Delete browsing history
• Make sure to uncheck Preserve Favorites website data.
• Select Temporary Internet Files, Cookies, and History, then click Delete.
NOTE: Microsoft has announced that Internet Explorer will reach end of life on June 15, 2022. After this date the application will no longer be supported and security updates will not be available.

Do you still need help? In the event you need additional assistance, please visit the UAS Helpdesk!!

Thank you for reading the Faculty Learning Corner! Have a great weekend!