Clearing Safari’s cache without deleting your history or cookies

September 3rd, 2015

I like to keep my browsing history and cookies intact for as long as possible. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve searched my browser’s history to find a site I viewed months ago. And, cookies keep me logged into the services I use most. The latest version of Safari keeps a single year of browsing history (since mine shows exactly a year’s worth currently though I’m positive I haven’t deleted my history in several years).

From time-to-time, especially as a web worker, I have the need for clearing my browser’s cache (the files the browser will store locally to load things quicker during subsequent visits) so that I can be certain I’m getting the very latest version of the web site or application I’m visiting.

It used to be that clearing or deleting your cache in Safari was a wholly separate action from deleting your browsing history and cookies. Recently, and I’m not exactly sure when since I don’t do this too often, these two actions have been combined into a single menu item “Clear History & Website Data”.

Well, I don’t want to do that! Fortunately, there is a way.

First, turn on Developer features in Safari by going to Safari > Preferences > Advanced > and choose “Show Develop menu in Menu bar”.

Now you’ll see a new “Develop” menu in your Menu bar and from there you can select “Empty Caches” which will clear your cache but keep both cookies and history intact.