Change Internet Explorer Cache Size In The Registry

There are a few configuration changes that I make on computers that need to be set in the Windows registry.

With having over 600 computers that I oversee, making sure certain settings are configured are needed.  Our System Admins do a good job at configuring most things – but there are other changes that I like to take on myself.

One of those changes is to set the maximum cache size in Internet Explorer 6, Internet Explorer 7, and Internet Explorer 8 via the registry.  Setting the Internet Explorer cache size in the registry is simple to do – and here is how you do it.

If you just need to set it for only the currently logged-in user account, it is much simpler to just open Internet Exploer, go to Tools – Internet Options, and click Seettings on the browser cache.

However, if you want to set the Internet Explorer cache size in the registry for all users, you need to open the ntuser.dat file in the C:\Documents and Settings\Default User directory.  Note that any users that have already logged into the computer, this technique will not work – it will only take affect for those users that will login to that computer for the first time after you update the ntuser.dat.

Open your Regsitry Editor (regedit.exe).  Click the “HKEY_USERS” key and then go to File – Load Hive.  In the box to open, you’ll open the C:\Documents and Settings\Default User\ntuser.dat file.  It will then ask for a name – so just enter ‘ntuser’.

After that is loaded, you will now need to navigate to this location:

HKEY_USERS\ntuser\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\5.0\Cache\Content

In this area, there already should be a “CacheLimit” REG_DWORD entry in there.  Now – the number you enter in this area needs to be a hex number.  So, here is what you do to get the hex.

Open your calculator on the computer and ensure it is in Scientific Mode (View – Scientific).  Now, type in the number you want the Internet Explorer maximum cache size set to.  For example, if you want 128 megabytes, you will enter 128 * 1024 (you multiply by 1024 because this is kilobytes).  This yields 131072 KB.  Now, click the Hex option.  This will yield “20000”.  This is the number you would then enter in the “CacheLimit” registry setting to set the maximum cache size for Internet Explorer in the registry.

All done!  The Internet Explorer cache size for all new users that login to the computer should be set at 128 MB.

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