How to Delete Browsing History in Internet Explorer 7

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Cache, Cookies, History, Form Data and Passwords

delete browsing history IE7
Scott Orgera

This tutorial is only intended for users running the IE7 Web browser on Windows operating systems.

There are many things that Internet users want to keep private, ranging from what sites they visit to what information they enter into online forms. The reasons for this can vary, and in many cases they may be for a personal motive, for security, or something else entirely. Regardless of what drives the need, it is nice to be able to clear your tracks, so to speak, when you are done browsing. Internet Explorer 7 makes this very easy, allowing you to clear the private data of your choosing in a few quick and easy steps. First, open your IE browser. Click on the Tools menu, located at the far right-hand side of your browser's Tab Bar. When the drop-down menu appears, select the Delete Browsing History... option.

The Delete Browsing History window should now be visible, overlaying your main browser window. The first section in this window deals with Temporary Internet Files. Internet Explorer stores images, multimedia files, and even full copies of Web pages that you have visited in an effort to reduce load time on your next visit to that page. To remove all of these temporary files from your hard drive, click on the button labeled Delete files...

The second section in the Delete Browsing History window deals with Cookies. When you visit certain web sites, a text file is placed on your hard drive that is used by the site in question to store user specific settings and information. This text file, or cookie, is utilized by the respective site each time you return in order to provide a customized experience or to retrieve your login credentials. To remove all Internet Explorer cookies from your hard drive, click on the button labeled Delete cookies...

The third section in the Delete Browsing History window deals with History. Internet Explorer records and stores a list of all websites that you visit. To remove this list of sites from your hard drive, click on the button labeled Delete history...

The fourth section in the Delete Browsing History window deals with Form data. Anytime you enter information into a form on a website, Internet Explorer stores some of that data. For example, you may have noticed when filling out your name in a form that after typing the first letter or two your entire name becomes populated in the field. This is because IE has stored your name from entry in a previous form. Although this can be very convenient, it can also become an obvious privacy issue. To remove this stored data from your hard drive, click on the button labeled Delete forms...

The fifth and final section in the Delete Browsing History window deals with Passwords. When entering a password on a Web page for something such as your email login, Internet Explorer will usually ask if you would like for the password to be remembered. If you choose for the password to be remembered, it will be stored by the browser and then pre-populated the next time you visit that page. To remove these saved passwords from your hard drive, click on the button labeled Delete passwords...

At the bottom of the Delete Browsing History window is a button labeled Delete all... If you wish to delete all of your browsing history components (temporary Internet files, cookies, history, form data, and passwords) at once then click on this button. Located directly under this question is an optional checkbox labeled Also delete files and settings stored by add-ons. Some browser add-ons and plug-ins may store similar information to Internet Explorer itself, such as form data and login passwords. If you wish to delete this information as well, click on the checkbox to activate this option. Finally, click on the Yes button to delete all of your Internet Explorer browsing history information.

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