As a Mac user, you may encounter situations where your icons appear distorted or not displaying correctly. This can be due to a corrupted icon cache, which stores icon information to enhance the performance of your system. In this article, I will guide you through the process of clearing and resetting the icon cache on both Intel and M1 Macs. Additionally, I will show you how to boot into Safe Mode to clear other caches on your Mac, providing you with a comprehensive solution for optimizing your system’s performance.
The icon cache on your Mac is a database file that stores the icons of applications and files, allowing your system to display them quickly and efficiently. However, if this cache becomes corrupted, you may experience issues such as missing or distorted icons. To resolve this, you can clear and reset the icon cache on both Intel and M1 Macs by following these steps.
First, you will need to access the Finder’s “Go” menu by clicking on the desktop and selecting “Go” from the top menu bar. Then, choose “Go to Folder” and type in the following path:
~/Library/Caches and press Enter. Here, you will find a file named “com.apple.finder” – this is the icon cache file. You can delete this file by dragging it to the Trash or right-clicking and selecting “Move to Trash.”
Once the file is in the Trash, you will need to empty it by right-clicking on the Trash icon in the dock and selecting “Empty Trash.” After doing so, restart your Mac, and the icon cache will be cleared and reset, resolving any issues related to distorted or missing icons.
Boot into Safe Mode to Clear Other Cache on Mac
In addition to clearing the icon cache, you may also want to clear other system caches to improve the overall performance of your Mac. One effective method to achieve this is by booting into Safe Mode, which allows your system to perform a basic check and clear various caches and temporary files.
Boot into Safe Mode on M1 Mac
To boot your M1 Mac into Safe Mode, start by shutting down the computer. Once it is powered off, press and hold the power button until you see the startup options window. From here, choose “Options,” then click on “Continue” under the “Startup Security Utility” section. Next, select “Utilities” from the top menu and click on “Startup Security Utility.” You can then choose “Security Policy” and click on “Reduced Security,” followed by “OK” to confirm. After this, restart your Mac, and it will boot into Safe Mode, clearing various caches and temporary files in the process.
Boot into Safe Mode on Intel Mac
If you are using an Intel-based Mac, the process of booting into Safe Mode is slightly different. Begin by shutting down your Mac and then turning it back on. As soon as you hear the startup chime, press and hold the Shift key. Continue holding the Shift key until you see the Apple logo and a progress bar. Once the progress bar disappears, your Mac will have booted into Safe Mode, where it will perform a basic check and clear various caches and temporary files to optimize performance.
By following these steps, you can effectively clear and reset the icon cache on your Mac, as well as boot into Safe Mode to clear other system caches and temporary files. This comprehensive approach will help enhance the performance of your Mac and ensure that your icons display correctly, providing you with a smoother and more efficient user experience.