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Should you Cache out your Browser Cache?

The browser cache is where your internet browser stores the web pages you have visited. These documents can be in form of HTML pages and images and that are then used by the browser to quickly reconstruct the majority of the page when you revisit the page. By storing a copy of your visited pages, the browser cache uses the copy to reconstruct all the parts of that web page that haven’t changed when you re-visit that same site. Otherwise the browser must completely download all the information again from the internet, which adds a lot of time and bandwidth.

Clearing the browser cache involves deleting all the previous files and folders that have been saved into your system automatically.

There are pros and cons of clearing the browser cache. Sometimes if you are having internet problems your ISP or a customer service rep of a company web page will ask you to clean out your cache. You may or may not want to do that. 

If you are using a public computer like at a library or cybercafe, then clearing your browser cache is essential for your personal security. By so doing, the next user on that computer will not be able to see what you have been doing or the websites you have visited. Some websites store passwords or if someone hits the back button on your browser they could see your email or other private content.

At home you will save your computer some of the risk of malware and virus attacks by clearing your browser cache.

The more time you spend surfing online, the more cache you build up. This is a two-edged sword. It can maximize your internet speed and performance. I have personally always loved this. I can type the first letter of a frequently visited page in the address bar, click on the web site name, and voila! I’m there. If I’ve forgotten the name of a web page I’ve been to and it is not in my recent history, or I am unable to find it again through a search, I can usually get there by going through the alphabet one letter at a time in the address bar and seeing what pops up. This really puts a lot of the work I need to do straight at my fingertips available in seconds, rather than having to dig through bookmarks, favorites, etc.


On the other side of the sword though, too much is too much, and too much will also slow down your browser drastically! In addition, if your hard drive capacity gets low, the oversized cache will affect your browsing speed and lower your computer’s performance.

Clearing your browser cache can sometimes open web pages that fail to open or that return error messages, or speed up websites that load very slowly and even hang. It can also prevent loading of old web pages and force the most recent page to load.

The best reason for not clearing your cache is that you can lose important data and important links, particularly if you forget to bookmark them like I do occasionally.

All in all, I personally prefer keeping the browser cache because for me, at least, it really keeps all I need for research and work quickly at my fingertips.

For other helpful hints please go to the ZookaWare Google+ page.

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