Delete Flash Cookies
Flash cookies are not deleted when you remove your browser cookies, because they are stored independent of your browser, meaning Flash cookies from Safari are accessible via Firefox, and vice versa. The interesting thing about Flash cookies though is that they could technically track your web browsing long after you have left the site that originated the Flash cookie, this is particularly the case with some advertising networks that appear ubiquitously around the web. Flash cookies actually have another name, they are known as Locally Stored Objects, or LSO’s, but whatever you want to call them, here is how to delete and remove Flash cookies, or LSO’s.
Delete Flash Cookies in Mac OS X
* Flash cookies are located in two locations, shown as follows:
Note that ~ signifies the user home directory
* You can navigate to these directories by using the Finder or by hitting Command+Shift+G and pasting the above location one at a time into the Go To Folder box and hitting “Go”
* You’ll now see a directory with a bunch of randomly generated names like VDZJH1CX
* Delete all of these folders if you want to delete ALL Flash cookies
* Repeat with the other directory listed above to completely remove all Flash cookies from your Mac
Now if you’ve used an Adobe AIR application, you might want to delete those AIR cookies too since they can track things outside of their realm as well, these are a little more tricky to delete because they are in the following location format:
~/Library/Preferences/AIR App Name/Local Store/#SharedObjects/flash file.swf/flash object.sol
You’ll need to know the specific Adobe AIR application name to delete the AIR cookies.
If you want to read more about Locally Stored Objects (Flash Cookies) check out Wikipedia’s entry on LSO’s, it is informative and helpful in understanding the technology.
I want an easy way to delete Flash cookies!
If you don’t want to go mucking around in various Mac system preference folders, try out this application called Flush. Flush is very easy to use and will delete the Flash cookies itself, so you don’t have to do much except launch the app. Flush works with Mac OS X Leopard and Snow Leopard.
Another option is to use Kill Flash Cookies, the cross platform compatible LSO deletion tool discussed below:
I have a PC running Windows or Linux, how do I delete my Flash cookies?
Easy, try out the aptly named Kill Flash Cookies, it’s got the most simple GUI in the world and it deletes flash LSO files in an instant whether you’re running Mac OS X, Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, or Linux. Try it out!