There are certain computer maintenance and privacy concerns that every MacBook Pro owner should be aware of. Some of these issues can be easily addressed after learning a few steps that aren’t very complicated. Knowing the basics can help you increase the life of your computer and ensure that it functions to the best of its ability over its lifetime.
Cookies, when it comes to computers, are not the delicious, fresh-baked variety that makes everyone smile. We will take a look at what cookies are exactly in more depth below, but you should know what cookies are and how to clear them off of your computer for a few different reasons. You might already know what cookies are, but knowing what to do about them can help you further make the most out of the power of your MacBook Pro.
What Are Cookies?
Cookies are small files that are stored on your computer that can build up over time, sometimes without the user even knowing that they exist. Cookies are intended to watch and track specific data that a company or website can then use to make predictions on what further data to send your way. They are basically a type of coded marketing tactic that will create a specific webpage that is designed towards your browsing habits.
Have you ever done some online shopping and then noticed that the shoes or vitamins you were looking at happen to be ads on a completely unrelated page? That is because of the cookies now stored on your computer. Each cookie stores a bit of data that can be used by other servers to cater to the content and information that you see online.
Some cookies are coded to expire once you have left a webpage while others may last on your computer until you manually get rid of them. Many of these cookies can build up over normal browsing usage so it’s a good idea to know how and when to clear and get rid of them.
How to Clear Cookies on a MacBook Pro
Clearing the cookies off of your MacBook Pro is an easy task, but if you don’t know how to do it, many of them can build up over time. The method to clear cookies depends on your internet browser but most methods are fairly similar. We will take a look at the way to clear cookies off of several common browsers here, but if you use an uncommon one just run a search on that browser and how to clear cookies.
How to Clear Cookies on Safari
Safari is a commonly used browser on many Apple devices, including your MacBook Pro so we will take a look at how to clear cookies off of here first:
- Open your Safari Browser.
- Click on the Safari menu option on the top-left of your screen.
- Click on Preferences.
- Click on the Privacy tab.
- Click the Remove All Website Data button.
- Click Remove Now when the confirmation pop-up appears.
This will remove all of the stored cookies in Safari from your MacBook Pro. You also have the option of only clearing cookies from specific sites:
- Follow steps 1 & 2 above.
- Click on the Details button next to the Remove All Website Data button.
- Select which cookies and/or data you want to remove.
- Click Remove.
- Click Done.
How to Clear Cookies on Firefox
- Click the Menu button on the top-right side of your Firefox browser.
- Click Preferences.
- Click Privacy & Security on the menu on the left.
- Go to Cookies and Site Data.
- Click the Clear Data button.
- Click Clear to permanently clear the data.
How to Clear Cookies on Google Chrome
- Open the Google Chrome browser.
- Click on Chrome from the top menu.
- Click on Clear Browsing Data.
- From here you can select to clear out the cookies and/or cache from your browsing history.
Why Clear Cookies
There are a few different reasons to clear cookies and it is a good basic habit to have. Every once in awhile, you may want to clear these out for any of these reasons:
I personally don’t like knowing that other websites are tracking my habits and history online. It feels like an invasion of privacy and so I usually clear my cookies often unless it’s from sites I am familiar with and use on a very regular basis. You probably aren’t doing anything weird or suspicious online, but it still just might feel strange to know that companies or websites may be tracking your behavior with cookies.
It Can Improve Performance
Sometimes cookies can have an effect on formatting or loading issues with web pages. If a website you visit often isn’t loading properly on your computer but it is on another device, like your phone, deleting your cookies can fix the issue. Similarly, if you notice that formatting or other layout aspects are off or weird on your computer, cookies may be affecting this. It’s an easy fix to simply try and delete cookies to fix these issues.
Sometimes deleting cookies can also speed up your computer as you are getting rid of unnecessary files and data that may be eating up RAM or CPU. Deleting cookies could just speed up your browser but it also might speed up your entire computer as well.
Now that you know how to clear cookies off of your MacBook Pro, give it a shot and see if you notice any differences. While the purpose of cookies is understandable from a marketing perspective, I like to delete them often. You can also prevent your browser from allowing cookies in the first place or set up your settings to approve specific cookies each time it is requested.
How often do you clear your cookies?