How To Troubleshoot Firefox And Safari For Mac

Firefox and Safari for Mac are the two most popular web browsers for Mac users. At times, both of them can act up and not perform properly. When this happens, here are a couple of basic troubleshooting steps you can take.

In Safari, go to the menu named Safari and select “Empty Cache”. This will remove the local (cached) copy of recently visited web sites. This might be all you need to do to fix your problem. [Update October 2014: The “Empty Cache” option is no longer available in Safari.] If not, you can continue by going to the Safari menu and selecting¬†“Reset Safari.” This is a very handy feature that lets you easily remove some of the saved information which can get damaged and cause Safari to misbehave. By default, all of the options are checked in the Reset Safari window. Typically, I recommend that you only select and reset the following since they seem to cause the most problems:

  • Remove all webpage preview images
  • Remove all website icons

If your Safari problem is not resolved, you can go ahead and select other items to reset. Be aware that removing saved names, passwords and AutoFill data can mean that you’ll be prompted to re-enter this information down the road. Consequently, I try to reset these items last.

[Update February 2017: As of Safari 9, the Reset Safari command is no longer available.]

Firefox doesn’t have a handy reset feature the same way as Safari. However, you can empty its cache by doing the following. Open Firefox and go to the Firefox menu. Select Preferences, click on Advanced, then click on Network. Click the “Clear Now” button in the Offline Storage section. To do more advanced troubleshooting in Firefox, I recommend checking out this helpful troubleshooting article written by the makers of Firefox.

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