Clear DNS Cache on Mac, Windows, and Chrome

clear dns cache chrome mac
clear dns cache chrome mac

Introduction

Have you ever encountered the frustration of visiting a website, only to find that it’s not loading correctly or showing outdated information? This issue might be related to your DNS cache. DNS (Domain Name System) is like an address book that your computer uses to find websites on the internet. It stores the IP address associated with each domain name you visit, making it faster for your browser to access websites. However, sometimes the information in the DNS cache can become outdated or incorrect, leading to website issues. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process of clearing the DNS cache on Mac, Windows, and Chrome, so you can refresh DNS records and troubleshoot website problems effectively.

Understanding the DNS Cache

Before we dive into the clearing process, let’s understand the DNS cache better. Think of it as a local storage of website addresses on your computer. When you visit a website for the first time, your computer looks up the DNS information to find the website’s IP address. Once it obtains this information, it stores it in the DNS cache. The next time you visit the same website, your browser checks the cache first to retrieve the IP address quickly. This saves time and makes browsing more efficient.

Why Clear the DNS Cache?

There are instances where clearing the DNS cache becomes necessary. For example, when you’re moving a WordPress site to a new domain or changing hosting providers, the DNS information on your computer might not update immediately. Consequently, you might be directed to the old website or encounter a “not found” error. By clearing the DNS cache, you can force your computer to fetch the latest DNS information and avoid such issues.

How to Clear the DNS Cache on Windows

Clearing the DNS cache on a Windows computer is a straightforward process:

  1. Click on the Start button and search for “Command Prompt” or “CMD.”
  2. Right-click on “Command Prompt” and select “Run as administrator” to open it with administrative privileges.
  3. In the Command Prompt window, type the following command and press Enter: ipconfig /flushdns
  4. You will see a message confirming that the DNS cache has been flushed.

How to Clear the DNS Cache on macOS

Clearing the DNS cache on a Mac is also simple:

  1. Launch the Terminal app from the Launchpad or go to Applications » Utilities folder and find Terminal.
  2. In the Terminal window, enter the following command and press Enter: sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder
  3. You will be prompted to enter your macOS account password. After entering it, press Enter.
  4. The DNS cache on your Mac will be cleared.

How to Clear the DNS Cache in Chrome

Google Chrome maintains its DNS cache separately from the operating system. To clear Chrome’s DNS cache, follow these steps:

  1. Open a new tab in Google Chrome.
  2. In the address bar, type chrome://net-internals/#dns and press Enter.
  3. Click on the “Clear host cache” button to clear Chrome’s DNS cache.

The Difference Between DNS Cache and Browser Cache

It’s important to distinguish between the DNS cache and the browser cache. While the DNS cache stores IP addresses and domain names, the browser cache stores temporary website data, such as images, scripts, and stylesheets. If you’re not seeing recent updates on a website, clearing the browser cache might be necessary.

Monitoring DNS Changes

After making DNS changes, it takes time for those changes to propagate across the internet. Online tools like DNS Checker can help you monitor how DNS changes are propagated globally. Once all locations show the same IP address with a green checkmark, it indicates that your DNS changes are updated everywhere.

Conclusion

Clearing your DNS cache is a valuable troubleshooting step to ensure you’re accessing the latest versions of websites and resolving potential issues. Whether you’re using Windows, macOS, or Google Chrome, the process is simple and can save you time and frustration. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily clear the DNS cache on your devices and enjoy smoother browsing experiences.

QnA

What is a DNS cache?

A DNS cache is like an address book saved on your computer. It contains the DNS (Domain Name Server) information of each website you visit. DNS is a technology that tells your computer the IP address associated with a domain name. Saving the DNS information in a local DNS cache helps your browser quickly find a website.

Why should I clear the DNS cache?

Clearing the DNS cache can be necessary in certain situations, such as when you are moving a WordPress site to a new domain name or a new host. The DNS information may not get updated quickly on your computer, and you might end up visiting the old website or seeing a ‘not found’ error. By clearing the DNS cache, you can force your computer to fetch the latest DNS information and avoid such issues.

How do I clear the DNS cache on Windows?

To clear the DNS cache on a Windows computer, follow these steps: 1. Click on the Start button and search for ‘Command Prompt’ or ‘CMD.’ 2. Right-click on ‘Command Prompt’ and select ‘Run as administrator’ to open it with administrative privileges. 3. In the Command Prompt window, type the following command and press Enter: ipconfig /flushdns 4. You will see a message confirming that the DNS cache has been flushed.

How do I clear the DNS cache on macOS?

To clear the DNS cache on a Mac, follow these steps: 1. Launch the Terminal app from the Launchpad or go to Applications » Utilities folder and find Terminal. 2. In the Terminal window, enter the following command and press Enter: sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder 3. You will be prompted to enter your macOS account password. After entering it, press Enter. 4. The DNS cache on your Mac will be cleared.

How do I clear the DNS cache in Chrome?

To clear Chrome’s DNS cache, follow these steps: 1. Open a new tab in Google Chrome. 2. In the address bar, type chrome://net-internals/#dns and press Enter. 3. Click on the ‘Clear host cache’ button to clear Chrome’s DNS cache.

What’s the difference between DNS cache and browser cache?

The DNS cache stores IP addresses and domain names, while the browser cache stores temporary website data, such as images, scripts, and stylesheets. Clearing the browser cache is necessary when you’re not seeing recent updates on a website.

How can I monitor DNS changes?

After making

DNS changes, you can use online tools like DNS Checker to monitor how the changes are propagated globally. Once all locations show the same IP address with a green checkmark, it indicates that your DNS changes are updated everywhere.