This article is all about how to clear the cache on Mac explained in the most possible simple ways. You will get complete about clearing the app cache, browser cache, and system cache.
Almost all the applications on the Mac machine, for some reason, cache part of the data to a local disk. This often leads to complications in the system because the data may be damaged, and the application will start to work slowly or just occupy space on your hard drive.
The good news for you is that the caches can be removed without fear of breaking the application or doing any damage to the app. Since they are re-created when you first start up the app (they will be smaller and without errors if there were any).
What is Cache or Cached Data?
Cached data are a set of temporary files created when you use applications on your computer. Cache files are needed to help your computer run faster. So, generally, caches are files required for good program performance.
The cache is basically said as a technical data that is stored when an app, browser or system performs some task or any operation. Cache files serve a vital function as they contain a “shortcut” to a task in order to perform it faster the next time.
Cache files are basically temporary data stored on your hard drive and used to speed up processes. For instance, Safari will download images on a webpage into the cache so that next time you visit the site you don’t have to download the images again.
Why should you clear the cache on Mac?
Old cache files created when some applications perform a task will remain latent in the system do nothing but piling up, cluttering your system folders. What was initially useful becomes a drag, slowing down your Mac through all the wasted space it is taking up. To make it even worse, undeleted cache data also leads to task conflicts and other system issues.
Cache data works wonders for your Mac and system, but over time it can pile up and slow down your Mac’s performance, taking up the increasing amounts of space.
Your browser cache is essentially saved bits of the websites you have visited recently. That way, if you go back, your computer can re-use locally cached elements that haven’t changed, which speeds up load times versus reloading everything fresh from the remote server. Your cache will overwrite itself eventually, but you can clear your cache, history, and cookies anytime you want to gain a little bit of extra security and speed up your Mac.
What are main cache types?
There are roughly three main types of caches will be created and you can clean on your Mac:
User (or App) cache (including app cache and DNS cache)
User (or App) cache:
- These cache files are created by all the apps that you use on Mac.
- It includes apps that came with your macOS (like Mail) as well as 3rd-party apps (like Sketch).
- Every application creates a lot of cache – it would not be surprising for you to clear up gigabytes of space when cleaning app caches as a lot of cached data will be created.
These cache data created by the built-in macOS system services that run your Mac machine.
All browsers store your browsing history and cache data from websites you visit then & then.
You know how you shop for something online and then for weeks you are seeing it everywhere? That’s because your browser caches hundreds of files that make up the websites you visit.
Caches also include cookies and trackers that save information about your browsing history and report the data back to the site.
This works out in your favor when you return to a site without having to log in again, but it can also leave you feeling like your computer is spying on you.
How to clear the cache on Mac
In this article, we will share some simple steps on how to clear Mac cache.
Cache files are basically scripts, images, temporary files, and other data that are left on your Mac after you visit a website or use an app for the first time. There are system cache, user cache, which includes app and DNS cache, and browser cache that accumulates as you surf the web.
1. Clear browser cache in Safari, Chrome & Firefox browsers
How to clear cache in Chrome
Here are the simple steps that show you how to clear browser cache in Chrome manually:
- Click the 3-dot icon in the top right corner of the Google Chrome browser.
- Choose the Settings option from the list of options.
- At the bottom of the menu, under the settings, you can see the option ‘Privacy and Security’.
- Click on the ‘Clear browsing data’.
- A dialog window of ‘Clear browsing data’ will open with two tabs like ‘Basic’ and ‘Advanced’.
- Here you can select the ‘Time range’ option with a lot of values in it.
- You can see the options of ‘All time’, ‘Last hour’, ‘Last 7 days’, ‘Last 4 weeks’, etc.
- Choose and check the checkboxes as per your requirement.
- The option ‘Cached images and files’ will clear the amount of data.
- In the Advanced tab also, you have the options of Time range and a lot of other caches.
- Timewise, choose All time option in the Time range.
- Finally, click on the ‘Clear data’ button to clear the cache.
How to clear cache in Firefox
Here are the simple steps that show you how to clear or delete browser cache in Firefox manually:
- Click on the hamburger icon in the top right corner of Firefox.
- Choose ‘Privacy & Security’ on the left sidebar or from the main menu.
- Scroll to the section “Cached web content” menu item in some versions or search for ‘Cookies and Site Data’ option in some other browsers.
- Now, you can click on the ‘Clear Data’ button.
- A dialog window of Clear data will open and here you can see the option ‘Cached web content’ showing amount of data beside it.
- Select it and click on the ‘clear’ button.
- Exit or quit all browser windows and re-open the browser.
- In the same menu, checkmark Override automatic cache management and limit the cache size in MB.
- Go with the default amount of 350 MB, which is enough for most user’s needs.
How to clear cache in Safari
Here are the simple steps that show you how to clear or delete browser cache in Safari manually:
- Choose Safari from the top main menu.
- Click on the Preferences.
- Choose the Advanced tab.
- Enable Show Develop menu in the menu bar.
- Now go to Develop in the menu bar.
- Choose Empty caches option from the list of options.
- Make sure you close or quit the browser and restart it after clearing the cache.
- Note, that all your auto logins and predicted websites in the address bar will be cleared if you check again.
2. How to clear App cache using CleanMyMac
Clearing app caches manually is a tough nut to crack and it is some time-consuming process. To do the job in a fraction of the time (and without the risk of losing something important), you can fire up a dedicated cache cleaner app, CleanMyMac X.
It will find and clear all your app caches blazing fast.
Here are the simple steps that show you how to clear cache with CleanMyMac software.
- Download CleanMyMac X in your Mac (it’s free to download).
- Run the app and click on System Junk.
- Click on the big Scan button.
- When it’s done scanning, click on the Clean.
3. How to delete system cache and unwanted app data manually?
In your Mac’s user folder, there is a hidden Library folder, which itself contains a folder of caches left by the applications you have installed on your Mac.
- Open the Finder.
- Click on the Go tab on the top main menu in the Finder.
- Click on the ‘Go to Folder’ option from the list of options available.
- Now paste the navigation path as like this: ‘~/Library/Caches’ in the space available.
- Click on the Enter.
- This will take you to the window where all data and content related to Safari will be stored.
- You can make a backup of the folders if you are worried about something going wrong.
- Keep the folders, but go into each one and delete the files inside.
- Now make sure to delete all the contents of the folder.
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