2/5/10
8:03 am

MacMost Now 354: Searching Safari History

Go beyond bookmarks by using your Safari History as an endless bookmarking system. The trick is to learn how to search your history to find pages you have visited hours or days ago. This powerful feature of the Web browser is often overlooked by new Mac users and long-time users alike.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Hi. This is Gary with MacMost Now.
today I want to show you a simple tip in Safari that will make browsing a lot easier.
So if you have been using the web ,and web browsers for a long time,like I have, you tend to think things remain about the same.Browsers work about the same you have the back button, the forward button ,and you can go through your history by continuing to click back.
But,of course, if you look at Safari you can actually see that you can browse your history ,go back and, see all the pages by title or URL that you looked at today, yesterday and, back in time.
But did you also know that you can search through them? This makes it very easy to find something you were looking at the other day.
Let me show you. Here I am in Safari and , I've got the history menu here, and I can see the things I have been through recently. Here I can go ,and see where I was at yesterday,and the day before,etc.
But I can also just take a look at my history by choosing 'show all history' it's just down below here off the screen. When you do that you get a colorful ,which you don't have to look at,you can actually shrink that up there. And you have your history ,and you can open it up, and take a look at different days and,the sites you were at. You can see the name of the site and the URL.
Now if you browse a lot,you might not be able to find what you want just by looking through it,that's why there's this search here ,so you can search for something,in your history ,and it will bring up just those items that match your search results.
Now this seems pretty basic,but it is pretty powerful if you use start it a lot. For instance, instead of bookmarking things, just trust them to your history,knowing that you've got at least a weeks worth of history to go back to. Say you're shopping for a product, and you're looking for the best price, you can look around ,and say you see it for one hundred dollars,and after looking for a while, you determine thats the best price.You can just search for one hundred dollars,and the name of the product in your history, and go back to that page.It's a lot better than bookmarking every single price page for every single site you have been to.
A way to think of it is to think of your history as the same way you think of bookmarks,except every page you go to is automatically bookmarked.Which creates a huge file of bookmarks that you're not supposed to browse through,but you're supposed to search through them to find what you want.
Now of course searching will also search your bookmarks as well so when you do bookmark something it's kind of sticking around forever,as where your history sticks around temporarily.
In your Safari preferences,in the general tab you've got an item here, remove history items, and you can set it to after one month ,two week,one week, a day,or a year,or even have to do it manually, so that it always keeps the things you've been to. And of course with todays hard drives being huge, saving everything might not be a bad idea.
By the way, to clear out your history,just go to the history menu, all the way at the bottom you will see the item for clear history. Now you can use this whether or not you've set your history to clear manually ,or to be cleared every week or, every month.
I encourage you to try using your Safari browser history ,and see if it makes surfing the web easier for you.
Till next time ,this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now.