One of the geekier features in Safari is the cache. Safari stores all kinds of things in the cache history so that frequently visited web sites will load faster. What’s in the cache?
To get an idea of what’s inside Safari’s cache files, click on the Window menu in the Safari Menubar. Then, select Activity. What you see is a long list of all the files Safari has collected recently.
That list of files is just from your current Safari session and only covers open Safari windows and tabs.
The Activity window is a mucky mess that’s somewhat cryptic and not easily understood.
To dig deeper into Safari’s cache you need a tool. Safari Cache Explorer to the rescue with a way find and retrieve the valuable junk in Safari’s cache.
10 Ways To Dig It Out
Safari Cache Explorer is a Mac app that knows where the cache is, and gives you a Finder-like way to browse through all the valuable files.
#10 – Intuitive Filters and Search: SCEx has filters, custom filters and a standard search box so you can dig deep into the cache files to find hidden music, movies, photos.
#9 – Delete Cache Files: Safari doesn’t always delete files the way I like SCEx lets you delete individual files or everything at once.
#8 – Drag and Drop: Found a file or two or twenty that you want? Drag them from the cache to wherever you want; Documents, Desktop, et al.
#7 – QuickLook: Preview the cache files without exporting, dragging and dropping, or opening a corresponding app. Use the QuickLook Preview instead.
#6 – Open Original URLs: Also buried in the cache will be links. Click to open.
#5 – Not Just Safari: Yes, it’s Safari Cache Explorer, but the app works on other native Cocoa app caches.
#4 – Easy Extraction: Does more than drag and drop but finds harder to find cache files
#3 – Smart Filters: Let SCEx find the files you want by giving it hints.
#2 – Growl Notifications: SCEx lets you know when a search is done or incomplete.
#1 – Custom Previews: If SCEx and QuickLook are not quite sure what app a file belongs to, you can Preview as… to see.
Cache hunting is an acquired taste. It may seem geeky but it’s also plenty of fun. Exploring Safari cache files is a little like looking into your own trash. The difference is that Safari Cache Explorer makes it easier and cleaner to find files of value and you don’t have to wear gloves.