Delete Internet Junk From Your Browsers

The data that accumulates in our Web browser’s history, such as cookies and temp files, is one of the biggest contributors to the “junk” files that slow down our computers. Fortunately, there are easy ways to lean out the browsing history in today’s Web browsers, and we’ll show you how.

Internet Explorer

In Internet Explorer 9, select the Tools button (it looks like a gear and is located next to the Home and favorites buttons) and click Internet Options. Click the Delete button under Browsing History and you’ll see a list of items that IE9 automatically saves, such as Temporary Internet Files, History, and Passwords. If you’re looking to save space, ensure that check marks are placed in the Temporary Internet Files, Cookies, and History checkboxes. Categories such as Form Data and Passwords save information that you’ve entered into previously visited websites, so they are designed to speed up your Web experience and may best be left unchecked. Similarly, IE9 also features a Preserve Favorites option that allows IE9 to retain the cookies and temporary files for those websites in your Favorites list to help those Web pages load faster. Consider checking this box to speed up your overall Web experience. Once you’ve made your checkbox selections, click the Delete button and IE9 will remove the files and information. Note that the temporary Internet Files folder may contain a large amount of data, so it could take a few minutes to finish the task.


To clear out Firefox 9, select the Tools menu (you may need to press the ALT button to temporarily bring up the Menu Bar) and click Clear Recent History. At the top of the resulting window, Firefox provides a Time Range To Clear drop-down box, where you can choose from Everything, Last Hour, Last Two Hours, Last Four Hours, and Today. Under Details, you’ll find checkboxes for the various types of data that Firefox saves. The key space hog categories in Firefox are the Cookies and Cache items, so you’ll want to ensure they are checked. Items such as Active Logins and Site Preferences help Firefox to expedite the loading of your most often-visited websites, so you may want to remove the checkboxes from those options. To delete the data, click the Clear Now button.

Google Chrome

With Google Chrome 16, you clear data by clicking the Wrench icon, which is located next to the Address bar on the browser toolbar. Click Tools and select Clear Browsing Data. The pop-up window offers you an Obliterate The Following Items From dropdown menu where you can delete data from the past hour, day, week, month, or all Chrome files. By default, Chrome places checkboxes in the Clear Browsing History, Clear Download History, Empty The Cache, and Delete Cookies And Other Site And Plug-in Data, which are wise choices for those who want to free up storage. The Clear Saved Passwords and Clear Saved Autofill Form Data are unchecked, and you may want to keep the data, because it helps to quicken the load times of your most commonly accessed websites. Click the Clear Browsing Data button to remove the files you selected.

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