Troubleshooting Unexpected Issues: Clearing Cookies and Cache

Troubleshooting unexpected issues can be stressful. One of the most common fixes our Support Team members have found in solving unexpected issues is to clear the cache and/or cookies from a customer’s Internet browser.

We understand why this might come off as a slightly more technical version of "have you tried turning it off and back on again?" However, it's actually an important first step for almost any troubleshooting procedure.

What is my cache?

The 'cache' is a tool used by your Internet browser to speed up the page loading process. Any element that appears on multiple pages within a single site will be placed in the browser's cache. This is really just a local folder on your hard drive that stores a copy of frequently-accessed page resources. Because it's faster to load an image from your hard drive than it is to download it from a remote server, the browser just goes back to the cache every time it needs to display the file when you surf to a new page. This saves not only the time needed to download the image file, but it also conserves network bandwidth. Caches are a very effective way to make browsing the Web faster, more convenient and less aggravating.

What are cookies?

Cookies are also files that are saved on your hard drive. Instead of representing content that's displayed on a Web site, though, they represent settings selected by the individual person who is using the browser. For instance, if a user browses to a Web site, signs into their account, and selects the "remember me" option, then the next time the user visits that site, they won't have to type in their username - the site will 'remember' it because the user's preference to do so was written into a 'cookie' file that was saved on their computer's hard drive. Any time a site asks a user to select preferences, there's a good chance those preferences will be saved in a cookie.

How can I clear this up?

To help guide you in ways to clear your cookies and cache for your browser type* and restart your browser, we recommend clicking on the following links to applicable resources:

Refreshing Your Cache

Deleting Cookies

Tip! *Preferred browsers for our solution are Chrome and Firefox

By clearing cookies and cache and restarting your browser, you have successfully completed an important first step in almost any troubleshooting procedure 

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