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Temporary Internet files
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Temporary files are located in C:\Windows\Temp. (In XP, it may be C:\Winnt\Temp) Files are placed there by Windows programs during various operations with the intent of deleting them when the job is done. Just as with the recycle bin, DO NOT USE THIS FOLDER TO STORE ANYTHING YOU WANT TO KEEP. You can also review the contents to see if there are any keepers, but most of it will be gibberish. Some temporary files are created when you open a program and begin a project. When you finish the project and close the program, the file is deleted. But if your computer freezes and you have to reboot, that file is still there and useless.
Note: In XP, the Temp folder hold 3 subfolders for Cookies, History and Temporary Internet Files. Do not delete these folders!!!
There are many ways to empty this folder. You can do it through the Properties dialog box for the C Drive (Not in 95) or you can open the folder in My Computer or Windows Explorer and delete the contents.
To use the C Drive properties box in Win 98/ME/XP, use My computer or Windows Explorer to display the drives. Right click drive C, click Properties. Click Disk Cleanup. Check the boxes of the items you want deleted and follow instructions. Notice this list includes other items discussed in this article as well. Fig 6 shows the selections. (XP may vary) Yours may be different depending on your setup. Notice if you have done a Windows upgrade, you can delete the files needed to uninstall the upgrade and open up the stated amount of space on your hard drive. NOTE: ITEMS DELETED FROM THIS BOX DO NOT GO IN THE RECYCLE BIN. ONCE DONE, IT IS NOT RECOVERABLE. If you use Go Back with 95/98 or Me, you can undo any damage. With XP, the system restore may not recover all mistakes.
Notice you can view a list of files in each item from this box. Select the item and click the button. Once you have determined to delete items, check the box on each item to delete and click OK. You will be asked if you are sure.
This dialog box can be accessed from the Start menu also in 98/ME. Start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools, Disk Cleanup. It is not available in 95. In 95 each of these items must be accessed separately.
Temporary Internet Files are located in C:\Windows\Temporary Internet Files. (In XP, C:\Winnt\Temp) These are files that are stored in your computer when using Microsoft Internet Explorer, AOL or CompuServe. This is called a cache memory. Netscape files this cache in the Netscape folder. If you use Netscape exclusively, do this once to review if anyone has left junk on your computer and then go to the Netscape Options to empty cache.
When you visit any site on the Internet, the browser saves copies of pictures, graphics and web addresses to make your browsing faster. When you return to a previously visited site, the graphics are already in your cache memory and the browser displays the graphic already in your computer making the display much faster.
Sounds like a good idea right? So what's the problem? Two things. First, these files take up hard drive space. Second, unless you do a lot of repeat surfing, you don't normally see any advantage from the cache.
So how do I get rid of it? There are two ways and I recommend using both. There is some redundancy, but I feel doing both gets rid of everything and doing only one leaves some junk. Maybe a Windows programmer can correct me on this if I'm wrong.
Method 1. Use the Disk Cleanup as shown in Fig 6. Check the box and click OK to delete.
Method 2. Access the Internet Properties dialog box from Control Panel or from IE (just as described under Cookies in the previous page). See Fig 7. Click the Delete Files button. In XP, the Delete Cookies button is here too.
The next dialog box that comes up asks if you want to delete Offline content. See Fig 8. The box is unchecked by default. Check the box unless you are doing offline jobs. Most new users do not even know how, so be sure to delete this also. Click OK and finish the job.
If you are using Netscape and want to delete the cache, open Netscape and select Edit, Preferences. Click the + to the left of the advanced tab (or double click it if you prefer) and select the Cache section. It should look like Fig 9. Then click the two clear buttons and answer Yes to the question box.
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