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How to clear the cache on your Mac computer

There are many reasons to remove old cache from your Mac and disk space issue is only one of them

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How to clear cache on Mac

You may have heard that it’s important to clear the cache on your various electronic devices every once in a while. But what exactly is caching, and why do our devices use it?

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 cache so that next time you visit the site you don’t have to download the images again.

Caching is especially important if your Mac is set up with wired ethernet, rather than relying on Wifi. And you’ll get the best performance out of it when it’s connected to your network using Gigabit Ethernet, according to Apple .

But as long as your Mac is set up to cache, that data needs to be cleared periodically to make your computer run more efficiently. That’s because clearing your cache can help protect your identity, make apps run better on your computer, and prevent you from using outdated forms that your Mac collected when you first visited a site.

How are cache files different from cookies?

Cookie files are tiny members of the big cache family. This form of cache is collected by your browser to remember previously visited websites. Cookies collect the details of your visit, its duration, actions on a page, etc. Advertisers also use these to follow you around the internet. However annoying they are, cookies are a part of internet reality that we cannot help but “Accept.”

There are many reasons to remove old cache from your MacBook and disk space issue is only one of them. So what are the other benefits?

  • Fixing issues with laggy web pages that load outdated content
  • Removing personal data stored by websites and applications.
  • You need to force-delete outdated cache from an app.

What are main cache types?

There are roughly three main types of caches you can clean on your Mac:

  • System cache
  • User cache (including app and DNS cache)
  • Browser cache.

Also read: How to Delete Bookmarks on Mac

How to clear the cache on your Mac using shortcuts

Shortcuts make the process of clearing your Mac ‘s cache extremely fast and easy. Here’s how to do it:

  • Press shift-command-G with your Finder window open.
  • Enter the following command into the search box: ~/Library/Caches
  • Click “Go.” This will bring you to the folder which contains all of your Mac’s cached files.
  • Press command-A to select all folders.
  • Click command-delete.
  • You’ll get a pop-up asking to confirm that you want to delete all of those files, and you’ll need to enter your Mac’s password to complete the action.

How to clear the cache on your Mac without shortcuts

If your keyboard is having issues or the command keys just aren’t reliable anymore, you can still clear the cache on your Mac. It just takes a little extra time. Here’s how to get it done:

  • Close or minimize all windows so that the toolbar at the top of your screen says “Finder.”
  • Select “Go,” and under that click on “Go to Folder.”
  • Enter the following command into the search box: ~/Library/Caches
  • Click “Go” to view the folder which contains all of your Mac’s cached files.
  • Go back up to the toolbar at the top of the screen and click “Edit” then “Select All.”
  • Under “File,” located in the toolbar at the top of the screen, select “Move to Trash.”
  • Enter your Mac’s password in the action confirmation pop-up to clear your computer’s cache.

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