How to View and Clear Safari Download History on a Mac

When using the Safari browser on Mac, it’s easy to see a list of files you’ve downloaded in the past and clear that download history if needed. Here’s how.

Start by opening the Safari app on your Mac. In any Safari window, look to the right of the address bar for an icon that looks like a downward-pointing arrow in a circle. If you see it, click it or press Option+Command+L. (If you don’t see the arrow icon, Safari doesn’t have a download history to display.)

When the download list opens, you’ll see a list of files you’ve recently downloaded. Somewhat confusingly, when you save certain media files like pictures, songs, and videos in Safari on Mac, Safari doesn’t include them in the download history list, so you won’t see them there.

To reveal the location of a downloaded file in the Finder, right-click the file in the list and choose “Show in Finder”. Or just click the little magnifying glass icon next to the file.

After that, a Finder window will appear on your Safari window. In it, you will see the downloaded file highlighted.

Point: By default, Safari automatically decompresses downloaded files and deletes the original ZIP files. To disable this option, open Safari Preferences, click “General” and uncheck “Open ‘safe’ files after downloading”.

An example of a Downloads folder on a Mac.

To remove a particular file from the list, right-click on it and choose “Remove from List”. To clear the entire list of downloads, click the “Clear” button in the upper right corner of the downloads pop-up window.

In the Safari downloads list, click the "Clear" button to clear your download history.

Safari will clear the downloads list and the downloads icon (arrow) in the toolbar will disappear. Whenever you need to review the list of downloads, if it hasn’t been recently cleared, click the downloads icon or press Option + Command + L on your keyboard. Happy downloading!

RELATED: What is the Finder on a Mac?

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