Many reasons exist for why you might want to check the web pages that have been viewed on your computer, such as monitoring children's Internet use, remembering a forgotten web page you visited or maybe even sheer curiosity. There are a couple methods you can use to check these viewed web pages: the browser's history itself or the cookies and cache (temporary copies and records of websites) stored by your Internet browser.
- Skill level:
Open the Internet browser you want to check. Click on the browser's shortcut icon on your computer desktop to open the browser program. Or, click the "Start" button and click on the Internet browser from the "All Programs" list.
Open the list of recently visited websites in your Internet browser. Using Internet Explorer 8 or earlier, click "History" from the "Explorer Bars" section under the "View" menu.
Using Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or later, click "Show All History" from the "History" menu.
In Google Chrome, click "History" in the Tools menu portrayed by a "wrench" icon in the top-right corner of the program.
Review the history in your Internet browser. Scroll the list of visited sites to recognise sites that you visited and those which may have been viewed by other people on your computer. Click the links to individual web pages to view them in the browser.
Open an Internet browser program.
Open the browser's cookies and cache location. Using Internet Explorer 8 or earlier, go to the "Tools" menu and click "Internet Options." Select the "General" tab and click the "Settings" button in the browsing history section. Click "View Files" to open the cookies location.
For Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or later, click "Options" from the "Tools" menu and select the "Privacy" section. Click the "remove individual cookies" link to open the cookies box.
Using Google Chrome, click "Options" under the "Tools" menu. Select the "Under the Hood" section and click the "Content Settings" button. Select the "Cookies" tab and click the "show cookies" button.
Review the cookies. Scroll through the list to see the cookies automatically stored by your computer after sites are visited. Look at the list to recognise any familiar domain names and websites. From the list, type individual website addresses in your browser's address bar to go to those sites which you've found or are unfamiliar with.
Tips and warnings
- Individual cookies often appear as a combination of a website's domain name and a series of numbers or letters.
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