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How to delete the contents of the Temporary Internet Files folder

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Summary
This article describes how to permanently remove the contents of the Temporary Internet Files folder from your computer.
More information
The Temporary Internet Files (or cache) folder is used by Windows Internet Explorer and by MSN Explorer to store webpage content on the computer hard disk for quick viewing. This cache lets Internet Explorer or MSN Explorer download only the content that has changed since you last viewed a webpage, instead of downloading all the content every time that the page is displayed.



Resolution

To delete the files in the Temporary Internet Files folder yourself, follow the steps for your version of Windows.
  • Windows 7 and Windows Vista
    1. Click Start Start button, click Control Panel, click Network and Internet, and then click Internet Options.
    2. Click the General tab, and then click Delete under Browsing history.
    3. Click Delete all, click Yes to confirm that you want to delete this information, and then click OK.


    Video: How to delete the contents of the Temporary Internet Files folder in Internet Explorer



  • Earlier versions of Windows
    1. Exit Internet Explorer.
    2. Exit any instances of Windows Explorer.
    3. Click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Internet Options.
    4. On the General tab, click Delete Files under Temporary Internet Files.
    5. In the Delete Files dialog box, click to select the Delete all offline content check box.
    6. Click OK two times.

Notes

  • If the Temporary Internet Files folder contains a?large amount of webpage content, this process may take several minutes to complete.
  • An administrator might have customized the settings for your Temporary Internet Files folder to prevent you from changing the settings. For example, the administrator can remove the General tab from the interface in the Internet Options dialog box. If you cannot access the Internet Options dialog box or the General tab, contact your administrator for more information.
  • Files that start with the word "Cookie" may remain in your Temporary Internet Files folder after you follow these steps. These files are pointers to the actual cookie files that are located in your Cookies folder. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    158769 Emptying Temporary Internet Files folder leaves cookies files
    For more information about how to delete cookies, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    278835 How to delete cookie files in Internet Explorer
  • In some cases, files that are downloaded from websites may remain in your Temporary Internet Files folder but will not be visible in Windows Explorer after you follow these steps.For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    301057 Temporary Internet files use more disk space than specified
References
For more information about the Temporary Internet Files folder, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
155353 How to adjust cache size for temporary Internet files
172949 How to change the location of temporary Internet files
263070 How Internet Explorer cache settings affect web browsing
175885 Cannot view temporary Internet files on shared computer
Properties

Article ID: 260897 - Last Review: 08/05/2016 06:41:00 - Revision: 22.0

Windows Internet Explorer 9, Windows Internet Explorer 8, Windows Internet Explorer 7, Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 7 Enterprise, Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Home Basic, Windows 7 Starter, Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Starter, Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Microsoft Windows XP Professional, Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 Update Rollup 2, Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition, Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server, Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition, Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition, Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition

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