How To Use the Safari 14 Start Page

In Safari 14 the new Start Page replaces Top Sites. The Start Page has several sections, including your Favorites, Frequently Visited sites and more. You can customize the Start Page to act much like the old Top Sites page, while also including your Reading List and iCloud Tabs pages.

Comments: 30 Responses to “How To Use the Safari 14 Start Page”

    Chris Schram
    2 months ago

    We’ll have to agree to disagree whether the new start page is an improvement over Top Sites. I am already displaying Favorites above the tab bar, so sticking that on a start page is pretty redundant. I loved the way I could add, rearrange and pin up to 24 sites on the old Top Sites screen. The Frequently Visited “feature” has NONE of that functionality. I have submitted feedback to Apple, but I’m not holding my breath for a change of heart.

    Mac T
    2 months ago

    I could not agree more with Chris S. How does one leave feedback with Apple?

    Bob Schrock
    2 months ago

    The text size on my new Safari 14 is tiny. It looks as if I can’t go bigger than 14 but I can’t even get that. Please help.

    2 months ago

    Bob: The size of text would depend on the website and their styles. You an always use Reader View if a site’s text is too small for you to read.

    lali
    2 months ago

    Gary Is there a way to clear the Privacy Report on Safari 14.0? If so please le me know.

    2 months ago

    lali: No. Curious — why would you need to do that?

    nick
    2 months ago

    Gary, the “Show iCloud Tabs” is not showing up as an option in the Start Page. I’m using Safari 14.0 in Catalina.

    2 months ago

    nick: You need to be using iCloud on multiple machines, have Safari enabled in iCloud (it is by default) and also have some web page currently open on another machine to have anything there.

    mark
    2 months ago

    You can sort of reproduce the “Top Sites” functionality in Safari 14.0. Go to the Start Page, and click on the Settings icon in the lower right corner. Select only “Favorites”. Then open the Sidebar and select Bookmarks. Create a new Favorites folder. Name the folder “Start Page”. Load the folder up with the sites you want on your Start Page. Then go to General Preferences and select that “Start Page” folder from the “Favorites Shows” dropdown. Quit and restart Safari.

    2 months ago

    mark: I pretty much say that in this video. But I suggest using both Favorites and Frequently Visited, since Top Sites was essentially that. So, why is it important to have it named Top Sites instead of Favorites? It is just a name.

    Arthur
    2 months ago

    how do you both add to and delete websites from frequently visited; before it was so easy with top sites

    2 months ago

    Arthur: You can’t “add” them as it is a list off Frequently Visited sites. A site will appear there if you frequently visit it. If you want to add a site to the Start Page, use Favorites. You can remove a site from Frequently Visited, however, by Control+clicking on it.

    john
    2 months ago

    Since the only way to really get back the features from Safari 13 seems to be downgrading, I think I’ll try that route.
    You guys know if restoring a Time Machine backup from before Safari 14 should work?

    2 months ago

    John: That’s not a valid option. You’ll then be stuck with Catalina and Safari 13 for the rest of your life (until you get a new Mac) without new features or security updates. Eventually it will stop syncing properly with iCloud and website won’t work as new HTML features won’t be supported. What is so bad about Safari 14?

    john
    2 months ago

    Gary Rosenzweig: I don’t plan to stick with Safari 13 forever, this is meant to be more of a temporary solution while I wait and see if Apple will respond user feedback and bring back those features.
    The ones that I’m missing the most are the Top Sites start page, which was central to how i used Safari, and the old Tab System (being able to see both favicon and tab title, and also to close a tab while displaying another tab without having to right-click on it first).

    2 months ago

    John: Try using the Start Page with Favorites being the sites you had “pinned” previously, and Frequently Visited being the rest of “Top Sites.” You can see favicons and titles just like before, and you can close tabs without having to switch — just click on the X in the tab.

    john
    2 months ago

    Gary Rosenzweig: It’s not possible to edit the “Frequently Visited” section though, only to remove sites that are already there. And the Favourites icons are too small, not having enough space even for the site’s title.
    Moreover, you can’t have both favicon and tab title in the new Tab System, only one of the two, and when favicon are enabled you lose the ability to show the “X” on the tabs while hovering over them.

    2 months ago

    John: Right, so if you want a site to always appear, add it to your Favorites. You can definitely have the favicon and title. I’m looking at it right now. Maybe you have a ton of tabs open so there is no room? I see the Xs there too, if I move my cursor over them.

    john
    2 months ago

    I just tested now with a new window: yes you can have favicons+tab title, though the title disappears at the 15th tab… so pretty useless for me (and i guess the majority of people) since i have more than 15 open at all times

    2 months ago

    John: 15 tabs? I don’t know if that’s a majority of people. How would you even have room for the favicon and title with lots of tabs? I rarely have more than 3. Anyway, I doubt Apple is going to ever go back to Top Sites.

    john
    2 months ago

    Well, before the tabs closer to the currently displayed one had full titles and favicon, the others to the left we visible only by sliding horizontally on the tabs bar. Worked like a charm.
    And yeah, Top Sites is probably gone for good, and that’s the real dealbreaker for me, it was so central to using Safari…

    AJ
    2 months ago

    I don’t remember which websites I had in my top sites (some, not all). Does Apple have a way for us to retrieve this info? My laptop auto updated and I opened it up to this new mess about Start pages.

    2 months ago

    AJ: No, there’s no way to retrieve that. But you should still have your History and of course your Bookmarks.

    Brenda Pawloski
    2 months ago

    Mark, that worked! At first I could not figure out how to create a favorites folder so I looked that up. It was just a regular bookmarks folder that I dragged up to the Favorites section. Thanks!

    Peter
    2 months ago

    Really missing Top Sites! I was using it mostly for my leisure daily boomarks. It was so good to have this additional customisable Top Sites section as alternative to more complex Favorites section. ( I’m using my Favorites a lot for my pro research work in very complex way adding subfolders etc. )

    jan
    2 months ago

    A good example of Apples decline

    Norma
    1 month ago

    Anyone missing top sites use Mark’s suggestion. It worked! Thanks so much Mark.

    Dianne
    1 month ago

    I’d already done Mark’s suggestion, but it’s a poor substitute for Top Sites, which were easy to see. I agree it’s the only option, though. I wish Favorites could at least display in the same way as Frequently Visited; that would help. Frequently Visited often drops sites, even though I visit them daily! It’s not keeping track of what I do; today, there’s only one site! Why can’t it at least keep what’s recent? I can find no setting to manage this. I miss the functional simplicity of Top Sites.

    Sylvia
    4 weeks ago

    I too am missing the actual displayed images and easy functionality of Top Sites. The favicons that now appear in the Favorites listing are not the same as the actual favicons of many of my preferred websites. So it takes extra unnecessary time to identify them since there is no image displayed of the website. This feels like another Apple change that serves their technology without taking into consideration their customers. I’ll try the alternative mentioned for recreating faux Top Sites.

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