How to reset Safari?

by Olivia Morelli - -

Safari is Mac’s built-in web browser. Like other web browsers, this one might lose its functionality and need resetting to the default state. It is usually required after malware attack or installation of the browser hijacker. When the browser is affected, it cannot perform normally.

Thus, it loads pages slowly, often crashes and freezes. Meanwhile, Safari reset helps to solve these problems. Earlier versions of the browser had a “Reset Safari” button that allowed to revert browser with one click. However, this function has been removed, and later versions of the browser no longer have this useful feature. Thus, users have to do it manually. Below you will find five methods how you can restore browser to the original state.

How to reset Safari?

Note. Resetting the browser leads to irreversible changes, such as deletion of installed extensions, themes, browsing history, cookies, saved login details and passwords, AutoFill text, etc. After the installation, your browser will look the same as it was when you first installed it. Thus, you will lose all your information. Please backup important data before you start.

Option 1. Clearing Safari’s history

The first and easiest method that helps to solve simple browsing-related problems is a deletion of the history. Safari has a feature that allows clearing website data and cookies. In order to do that, follow the steps below:

  1. Open Safari;
  2. On the top of the screen click the Safari menu;
  3. In the drop-down menu, look up for Clear history… option and click it: Option 1 Step 1Open 'Clear History...' option from the Safari menu.
  4. In the appeared box choose the period and click Clear History option: Option 2 Step 1In the appeared window, choose the time frame from which you want to clear data. Thus, click on 'The last hour' drop-down menu and choose your preferred period. Then click 'Clear history' button.

Option 2. Clear cache in Safari

The previous method did not help, and you are still dealing with the same issues, you should try to clean web caches by following these instructions:

  1. Launch Safari;
  2. Click Safari menu on the top of the toolbar and choose Preferences… Option 2 Step 1Click on Safari menu and open 'Preferences...' window.
  3. When Preferences window shows up, go to Advanced tab and near 'Show Develop menu bar’ option tick the checkbox. Option 2 Step 2In the appeared window click the 'Advanced' tab. At the bottom of the window look for 'Show Develop in menu bar' statement and check it.
  4. In the top of the screen, you should see a newly appeared Develop tab that allows clearing cache. In order to open Empty Cashes options, you have to click Develop tab and choose it from the drop-down list, or you can simultaneously clicking Option + Command + E keys. Option 2 Step 3In the top toolbar, you will see a 'Develop' tab. Click on it and go to 'Empty Caches' option.

Option 3. Removing extensions from the Safari

One of the main reasons why browsers start behaving oddly is an installation of suspicious or even malicious extensions, toolbars or plugins. It might happen either directly or indirectly. Potentially unwanted applications usually are capable entering the system and hijacking the browsers silently. Thus, if you are suffering from redirects to questionable sites, pop-ups and similar problems, you have to look through the list of Safari’s extensions and remove suspicious entries:

  1. Open Safari.
  2. Go to Preferences…
  3. In the appeared window choose Extensions tab. Here you will see the list of installed apps on the browser. If you find some unknown extensions, you have to disable or uninstall them. Option 3 Step 1Open the list of Safari extensions. Carefully look through it and remove all unknown entries.
  4. Then open Security tab. Look up for ‘Internet plug-ins’ option and untick the checkbox next to it. Safari also allows disabling plug-ins for particular websites only. You can configure the settings by clicking Plug in Settings… button. Option 3 Step 2Open Security tab. Untick pre-selected Allow Plug-ins option.
  5. Restore Safari to save the changes.

Option 4. Manual Safari reset

If none of the previous options helped to solve browser-related issues, you have to use heavy artillery and reset Safari manually:

  1. Close all the programs that are currently running on Mac. On the top of the screen click Go tab;
  2. You have to change Safari’s configuration folder’s location from Library to a desktop. In order to see Library option, you have to hold down the Option key. Once necessary folder appears, click on it. Option 4 Step 1Open Go tab. Press 'Option' key and hold it until Library folder appears. Then click it.
  3. From the appeared window, move Safari’s folder to the desktop. Option 4 Step 2In the appeared window find the Safari configuration folder.
  4. Open the Library folder again. From the folder’s list below you have to delete all indicated files:
  • From the Saved Application State folder eliminate com.apple.Safari.savedState folder.
  • From the Caches folder delete all com.apple.Safari folders.
  • From the Cookies folder terminate com.apple.Safari.SafeBrowsing.binarycookies file.
  • From the Preferences folder delete all files that feature com.apple.Safari.
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Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli

Malware analyst...

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