MRED Blog

REinventing MLS . . .

Why should I clear my Temporary Internet Files (Cache) and will it harm my computer?

By:  Stephanie Abrams, Help Desk and Tech Support Manager 

Clearing your browsers cache is not harmful and is actually a good thing!  Clearing your browsers cache after connectMLS has had a major update is also a must!  This brief article explains what cache is, some important reasons why you should clear it (like the one just mentioned), and how to do so. 

What is cache? 

When you view a web page through your browser, the browser makes a copy of it and stores it in a special folder in your computer’s hard drive, so that it can display the page to you quickly the next time you visit the site.  It displays this copy of the page while the actual web page is being downloaded. This copy is called the cache

If it helps speed things up, why should I clear them?

In the cache folder of your computer’s hard drive, copies of all web pages that you visit, gets stored. These temporary Internet files or cache that the computer saves for quick viewing later, can grow rapidly if you surf the web a lot, and that means it uses up a lot of your hard drive space. This is one reason why you should clear cache regularly.

Another reason is that any sophisticated website (such as our powerful connectMLS system!)  you visit is actually a composition of dozens, hundreds or even thousands of files.  Updates to these files are made in order for us to push important changes to the system or new features live.  If we change a file that your browser has cached, it’s going to keep serving the old, cached version of the file and you may not be seeing our most recent changes. This is another very important reason to clear your browers cache regularly.   *Hint: if you experience any “weirdness” shortly after we have deployed an update to the system, you will want to clear your browsers cache. In most cases, this simple act will correct the problem.   Also, if you are using Internet Explorer, you will want to be sure that the browser is always looking for the latest version of pages by going to Tools→internet options→settings (within the browsing section) and choose “Every time I visit the webpage”.

How can I clear my Temporary Internet Files (Cache)?

Here is a good resource that provides step by step instructions for clearing cache in various Browsers.   http://www.wikihow.com/Clear-Your-Browser’s-Cache

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