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Vanguard - FAQs - browser help

Help Center  »  Technical information  »  Browser FAQs

Technical FAQs—Adjusting web browser settings

Web browser basics:

Which browsers and operating systems work best with Vanguard's website?

What are cookies and why must my browser accept them?

Web browser troubleshooting:

How do I clear my browser's cache and cookies?

How do I disable my popup blocker?

Web browser basics

Which browsers and operating systems work best with Vanguard's website?

Currently, our site is optimized for the following operating systems and web browsers:

Microsoft Windows operating systems:

  • Windows Vista
  • Windows 7
  • Windows 8

Microsoft Windows web browsers:

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.x or higher
  • Firefox 24.x or higher
  • Google Chrome 31.x or higher

Macintosh Operating Systems

  • 10.5 (Leopard)
  • 10.6 (Snow Leopard)
  • 10.7 (Lion)
  • 10.8 (Mountain Lion)
  • 10.9 (Maverick)

Macintosh web browsers:

  • Safari 5.x or higher
  • Firefox 24.x or higher
  • Google Chrome 31.x or higher

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What are cookies and why must my browser accept them?

Cookies and other similar data files are tiny pieces of information that we ask your browser to store. If your browser doesn't accept cookies, you won't be able to view your account information online. Vanguard.com uses two types of these data files:

Session cookies. These data files are temporary cookies that are deleted when you shut down your browser, when you log off, or after your computer is inactive for 15 minutes. These cookies let us know that you've logged on and they allow us to maintain your privacy as you move from page to page. They also act as timers, logging you off after prolonged inactivity to prevent unauthorized account access.

Permanent or persistent cookies/data files. These types of data files are stored on your hard drive and are read by your browser each time you visit our website. They're used to remember which investments you entered in your Watch List, which funds you're tracking through Outside Investments, the results from your last visit to our Narrow Your Fund Choices tool, and to help verify your identity when you try to access your account information or initiate an online transaction. We also use them if we need to send you important messages while you're online.

Important notes:

  • We use data files such as cookies only when alternative means are not practical or available.
  • We disclose all uses of these data files on this page.
  • We limit the size of our cookies to 4 kilobytes. (It would take about 20 million cookies to fill a 2-gigabyte hard drive.)
  • You may receive multiple cookies or similar data files during each visit to vanguard.com. For example, when you navigate within a secure area, temporary cookies may be created each time you leave a page.

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Web browser basics

How do I clear my browser's cache and cookies?

To clear your browser's cache (temporary internet files), locate your browser below and follow the instructions:

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.x (Windows)

  • Click Tools in the enhanced browser toolbar and select Internet Options.
  • In the Browsing History section, click Delete.
  • Click Delete Files in the Temporary Internet Files section of the Delete Browsing History window. Do not click Delete All. The Delete All feature will remove all cookies, passwords, and history from all other websites as well as Vanguard's.
  • Click Yes in the Delete Files window and click Close.
  • Click OK to close the Internet Options window.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.x or higher

  • Click the Tools menu, then select Internet Options.
  • Under the Browsing History section, click Delete.
  • Place a check only next to Temporary Internet Files. Uncheck all other boxes in the list.
  • Click Delete.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 10 Metro

  • From any webpage in Internet Explorer, place cursor in the bottom right corner.
  • Click on the Settings or the gear icon.
  • Choose Internet Options.
  • Under Delete Browsing History, choose Delete. (Please note: Clicking Delete will remove all browsing data and won't give you the option to choose specifics.)

Google Chrome 31.x and higher (Windows or Mac)

  • Click the paper icon in the upper-right corner.
  • Select Settings.
  • Click Show advanced settings at the bottom of the page.
  • Under the Privacy heading, click Clear browsing data.
  • Under the Obliterate the following items from, set the dropdown menu to the Beginning of time.
  • Uncheck all options except Empty the cache. Under Clear data from the period, set the dropdown menu to Everything, then click Clear browsing data.

Firefox 24.x (Windows or Mac)

  • Click the Tools menu and select Clear recent history.
  • Under Time range to clear, set the drop-down menu to Everything.
  • Uncheck all options except Cache.
  • Click Clear now.

Safari 5.0

  • Click the Safari menu, then choose Empty Cache.
  • Click Empty to confirm. For best results, quit Safari and relaunch it.

Safari 6.x or higher

  • Click the Safari menu, then choose Preferences.
  • Click the Privacy tab.
  • Click Remove all website data.

To clear your browser's cookies, follow the instructions for your browser below.

Internet Explorer 7.x or higher

(Please note: If you're using Internet Explorer 8 or higher, you may need to press the Alt key to view your menu bar.)

  • Under the Tools menu, select Internet Options.
  • On the General tab, under Browsing history, click Settings.
  • Select View files.
  • Hold down the Control (Ctrl) key and select the Vanguard cookies you want to delete. (They will be .txt files that start with "Cookie:.") 
  • To delete the cookies, drag them to your Recycle Bin, hit the "Delete" key, or select Delete under the File menu.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.x or higher

  • Under the Tools menu, select Internet Options.
  • Under Browsing History, select Delete.
  • Place a check only next to Cookies. Uncheck all other boxes in the list.
  • Click Delete.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 10 Metro

  • From any webpage in Internet Explorer, place your cursor in the bottom-right corner.
  • Click Settings or the gear icon.
  • Select Internet Options.
  • Under Delete Browsing History, select Delete. (Please note: Clicking Delete will remove all browsing data and won't give you the option to choose specifics.)

Google Chrome 31.x or higher

  • Click the paper icon in the upper-right corner.
  • Select Settings.
  • At the bottom of the page, click Show advanced settings.
  • Under Privacy, click Content settings.
  • On the Cookies tab, click Show cookies and other site data.
  • In the Search box, type "Vanguard." Then select all your Vanguard cookies and click Remove.

Firefox 24.x or higher—Windows

  • Click the Tools menu and select Options.
  • Click the Privacy icon. 
  • Click Remove individual cookies.
  • In the Search box, type "Vanguard."
  • Select the cookie you want to remove and click Remove cookie. To remove multiple cookies, hold down the Control (Ctrl) key on your keyboard while selecting the cookies you want to remove. Then select Remove cookie.

Firefox 24.x or higher—Macintosh

  • Click the Firefox menu and select Preferences.
  • Click the Privacy icon. 
  • Click Remove individual cookies.
  • In the Search box, type "Vanguard."
  • Select the cookie you want to remove and click Remove cookie. To remove multiple cookies, hold down the Command/Apple key on your keyboard while selecting the cookies you want to remove. Then select Remove cookie.

Safari 5.0

  • Click the Safari menu, then choose Preferences.
  • On the Security tab, select Show cookies.
  • Type "Vanguard" into the search box.
  • Hold down the Command/Apple key on your keyboard and select the Vanguard cookies you want to remove.
  • Select Remove.

Safari 6.x or higher

  • Click the Safari menu, then choose Preferences.
  • Click the Privacy tab.
  • Click Remove all website data.

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How do I disable my popup blocker?

In order to use our site you may need to disable your popup blocker(s). First, you need to locate the applications, then disable the popup blockers. There are three major types of popup blockers that may be installed on your system:

  1. Blockers built into your web browser: Internet Explorer 6 and higher, Firefox, Safari, and Google Chrome all have popup blockers built into the applications. See below for instructions for specific web browsers.
  2. Blockers you add through a toolbar: Some of the most popular web browser toolbars, such as Google Toolbar and Yahoo! Companion include popup blockers you can control in the toolbar window. We recommend that you check the toolbar manufacturer's website for instructions for disabling the popup blocker, as most manufacturers keep this information in their online help files.
  3. Stand-alone blockers: You can also purchase or download applications that block popup windows and other advertisements as part of an overall security package. These include applications such as Popup Stopper, Ad-Subtract, and Ad-Aware, as well as firewall or antivirus applications including Norton Internet Security and Zone Alarm. We recommend that you check the manufacturer's website or the help files for the application for instructions for disabling the popup blocker.

Note: Most popup blockers running on Windows computers can be temporarily disabled by holding down the Control (Ctrl) key and Alternate (Alt) key on your keyboard while clicking a link. This is the fastest and easiest first step.

To disable a popup blocker on your web browser, follow the instructions for your browser below.

Windows users:

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 or higher

(Please note: If you're using Internet Explorer 8 or higher you may need to press the Alt key to view your menu bar.)

  • Click the Tools menu.
  • Click Popup blocker.
  • Click Turn off popup blocker.

Mozilla Firefox 24.x or higher

  • Click the Tools menu, then select Options.
  • Click the Content icon at the top of the Options window.
  • Uncheck the Block popup windows option.

Google Chrome 31.x or higher

  • Click the paper icon in the upper-right corner.
  • Select Settings.
  • Click Show advanced settings at the bottom of the page.
  • Under Privacy, click Content settings.
  • Under Pop-ups, select Allow all sites to show pop-ups.

Macintosh users:

Safari 5.0

  • Click the Safari menu.
  • Uncheck Block popup windows.

Safari 6.x or higher

  • Click the Safari menu, then choose Preferences.
  • Click the Security tab.
  • Uncheck Block popup windows.

Mozilla Firefox 24.x or higher

  • Click the Firefox menu, then select Preferences.
  • Click the Content icon at the top of the Options window.
  • Uncheck Block popup windows.

Google Chrome 31.x or higher

  • Select the paper icon in the upper-right corner.
  • Select Settings.
  • Click Show advanced settings at the bottom of the page.
  • Under Privacy, click Content settings.
  • Under Pop-ups, click Allow sites to show pop-ups.

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Need technical assistance?

Contact Web Technical Support Services at 888-353-0547, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Eastern time.

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