How to Clear the Cache on Xbox One Consoles

Speed up your console and get rid of pesky problems

Your Xbox One is a lot like a very specialized computer, and it has a cache just like computers do. The cache is a type of storage that the Xbox One uses for data that it needs to access very quickly on a regular basis. When the cache gets full, the Xbox One is no longer able to efficiently store and retrieve important data, which can cause the console to slow down significantly. If you've noticed performance issues with your Xbox One, then you should try clearing the cache.

An unplugged Xbox undergoing the cache clearing process.
Jeremy Laukkonen 

What Does Clearing the Cache Do?

Clearing the cache on your Xbox One removes temporary data that games and apps use to speed up operating. When this data accumulates over time, it can cause the console to start slowing down. In some cases, you may even receive an alert that your cache is full. In order to restore your Xbox One to its full operational capacity, you have to clear the cache.

While clearing the cache removes temporary data, it doesn't touch game data, save data, your achievements, or anything like that. Any games, apps, movies, and shows you have downloaded will remain untouched. You can safely clear your cache without worrying about losing any important data. In fact, playing with a full cache can actually prevent you from earning achievements and placing on leaderboards in some cases.

How to Clear the Cache on Your Xbox One

Clearing your Xbox One cache is an easy process that only takes a few minutes. It's similar to turning your Xbox One off, but with a few extra steps. You won't need any special tools or expertise, but you will need access to both the front and the back of the console.

Here's how to clear the cache on your Xbox One:

  1. Press and hold the Power button on the front of your Xbox One until the console turns off.

    Turning off an Xbox One console.
     Jeremy Laukkonen
  2. Unplug the power cord from the back of your Xbox One.

    Removing the power cord from an Xbox One console.
     Jeremy Laukkonen
  3. Press and hold the Power button on the front of your Xbox One several times.

    Pressing the power button of an unplugged Xbox One console.
     Jeremy Laukkonen
  4. Wait a minute, and then plug the power cord back in.

    Plugging in an Xbox One console.
     Jeremy Laukkonen
  5. Wait another minute, and then press the Power button on your Xbox One to turn it back on.

    Powering on an Xbox One console.
  6. Your cache should be clear at this point, allowing your Xbox One to perform the way it used to.

What to Do if Your Cache Won’t Clear

In most cases, following the previous steps will clear your cache. In the few cases where that doesn't do the trick, there are a couple of other things you can try. The first has to do with a secondary cache, known as persistent data, that's used for things like DVDs and Blu-rays that don't get cleared along with the main cache using the method described above.

To clear persistent data on your Xbox One:

  1. Press the Xbox One button on your controller, and select Settings.

    A screenshot of the Xbox guide menu.
  2. Navigate to Devices & connections > Blu-ray.

    A screenshot of the Xbox one devices & connections menu.
  3. Select Persistent Storage.

    A screenshot of the Xbox One Blu-ray menu.
  4. Select Clear Persistent Storage.

    A screenshot of clearing the Blu-ray persistent storage on an Xbox One.

Resetting Your Xbox One Console

If you still have cache problems after trying both of those fixes, then you will have to reset your Xbox One. This is also referred to as restoring the Xbox One to factory settings, and as a soft factory reset. Rather than completely wiping the Xbox One, which is known as a hard factory reset, performing a soft factory reset leaves all of your games and apps in place while fully clearing the cache and restoring the Xbox One itself to a pristine state.

While this does not delete your games and apps, it does remove your Xbox Live account from the console and delete your locally-stored save game files, screenshots, and videos. If you are normally connected to the internet when you play games, your saved game data will be available to download from the cloud after resetting.

Here's how to do a soft factory reset:

  1. Press the Xbox Button on your controller, and select Settings from the menu.

    A screenshot of the Xbox guide menu.
  2. Select System > Console Info.

    A screenshot of the Xbox One System menu.
  3. Select Reset Console.

    A screenshot of the Xbox One console info screen.
  4. Select Reset and keep my games & apps.

    A screenshot of the soft factory reset option on Xbox One.

    It's very important that you select the Reset and keep my games & apps option. If you don't, all of your games and apps will be removed from your console, and you will have to download them again.

  5. Wait for the console to reset, and log back in using your Xbox Live username and password.