How To Delete Temporary Internet Files in Internet Explorer

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These instructions explain how to delete Temporary Internet Files. Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) uses the Temporary Internet Files feature to store copies of Web content on the local hard drive. This feature improves network performance but can fill the hard drive with large amounts of unwanted data. IE allows many aspects of the Temporary Internet Files feature to be controlled, including the ability to delete temporary files as needed.

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: < 1 minute

Here's How:

  1. Open either Microsoft Internet Explorer or the Windows Control Panel.

  2. In Microsoft Internet Explorer, open the Tools menu and choose the Internet Options... menu. In Control Panel. open the Internet Options list item. In either case, a new window titled "Internet Properties" appears.

  3. In the Temporary Internet Files section of the Internet Properties window, click the "Delete Files..." button. A new "Delete Files" window appears.

  4. In the "Delete Files" window, optionally check the "Delete all offline content" checkbox to also remove temporary files IE has saved for offline viewing. Click OK. A delay of up to several minutes may occur as IE proceeds to delete the temporary files it has cached. If the "Delete all offline content" checkbox is not checked, IE will not delete temporary files associated with offline content; otherwise, all temporary files will be deleted.

  1. Click OK to close the Internet Options window.


  1. Temporary Internet Files are different from Cookies and stored separately on the hard drive. Internet Explorer provides a separate feature to delete cookies.

What You Need:

  • Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer version 5.0 or newer