Saturday, April 9, 2016

Safari Browser Cache

I've always used Safari as my main browser because it was, and to what I know so far still is, the most W3C compliant and least robust browser, including Google Chrome (long story there where I've removed it and Google's Software Update software), Firefox, Chromium, Omniweb, Sea Monkey, etc.

Recently, after removing Google's instrusive software, I removed all of the other browsers except Ominweb which can mimic the others. I've always designed my Web pages for Safari, but tested them with Chrome and Firefox. I've always ignored Microsoft's Internet Explorer since it was the least compliant, most robust, and often used noncompliant, proprietary features.

What I want to say now is something I've done over the years because it helps when testing Web pages, and while I only use it for Safari, it should be used on the other browser if possible. That's turn off the browser's cache.

The cache is used to store Web pages so when you go back it simply reloads the page in cache than retrieves the page again. This is good for static pages, but bad for dynamic pages, or when you want to reload the page, and then have to force the reload to write a new version to cache.

In Safari you don't normally see this setting because it's defaults to storing cache. You have to set it each time you open Safari but it's a simple click before you load any Web page, but there is one thing you must do first.

You have to enable viewing the "Develop" dropdown menu and Safari's menu bar. This is a permanent setting so it will always appear when you open Safari. After that, just open the dropdown menu and click "Disable Cache". It will not store any cache for the time you have Safari open.

The downside is that you have to do this everytime you open Safari, but I do it out of habit. This is important if you don't clear the cache routinely if not before you close Safari. There is a command you can use in Terminal mode to remove the cache files anytime whether Safari is open or not.

Why is this important? It's not if it doesn't bother you or you don't worry about the cache files. They'll just keep piling up on the cache folder. The advantage is that no application can access them or use them because they aren't created in the first place.

Anyway, just a thought. It's the user's choice, but it simplifies my work and I'll always get a fresh version of any Web page.

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