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How To Refresh MacBook Air (2023 Guide)?

How To Refresh MacBook Air intro picture
How To Refresh MacBook Air
Photo by JÉSHOOTS:

Have you just migrated from windows to Mac? Then, How to refresh a MacBook air or simply a MacBook is more relevant to you. You are waiting for a shock. Nevertheless, let us dive in.

How to refresh the Mac desktop?


How to refresh in MacBook air?

The Simple answer is you cannot. Yes, you cannot refresh the desktop on Mac. You’re used to right-clicking the mouse and clicking the refresh button whenever you’re on your desktop, Don’t you? 

Even after days of owning a MacBook, Aren’t your fingers still itching to do a quick refresh of your desktop?

We know the tragedy. We, too, felt it. 

You will find it hard to digest the fact that you cannot refresh the desktop of a MacBook.

But, Why can’t you refresh on mac desktop?

You cannot refresh the desktop of a MacBook Air, MacBook Pro or any Mac simply because you don’t need it at all.

Your brand-new Mac does it all on its own.

Back in windows, especially on windows 7 and lower, to do a fast rendering of the desktop on your Pc, the operating system takes snapshots. Your computer might miss a snapshot sometimes.

For example, you were copying something on a desktop and after copying, you might not see that object on the desktop. You will do a quick refresh on Mac, and that item appears now on the desktop. This is because the snapshot of the desktop wasn’t the latest one, and refreshing the desktop gives the renderer the newest image of the desktop. 

In Mac, this is a different process. It doesn’t have registries to constantly refresh on Mac. Also, the image of the desktop is rendered in real-time, so you will always see the latest state of the desktop.

Hence, refreshing the desktop of a Mac is not required.

With windows eight or later, the os always fetches the latest state of the desktop on its own, and you will always see the latest render.

So, why is there still a Refresh button on a windows PC? 

It is because it was always there, and you feel good to refresh the desktop.

So, How To Refresh MacBook Air? You cannot.

However, there are places in Mac where you can do a refresh. Browsers are one of those.

How to refresh the web browsers on Mac

Yes, we have now come to a point. Refresh is possible in the web browser. It is similar to reloading. On doing a refresh, the Mac will reload the page. Let’s see how to refresh in various browsers and Mac apps.

On Apple Safari Browser

Screenshot of safari browser showing its refresh button
Refreshing Safari browser

You can refresh the browser in three ways. Punch in the URL of choice on the safari address bar, which is the place where you usually put the URL. Once the page is loaded, a refresh button appears on the right side of the address bar. See the image above for reference. I have circled the refresh button. Clicking it will refresh the page.

The second way to refresh Safari on a MacBook is by holding the comment button and pressing the key ” R.”

The third way could be more convenient. You need to go into the menubar and click ‘view.’ There you can see an option to refresh the page. Hence, most stick to the first or even second ways.

If the refresh function fails, there is also a way to hard refresh your web browsers. To keep the clutter away, I have discussed the same in the later part of this article.

How to refresh Firefox

Screenshot of Firefox web browser showing its refresh button
Refreshing in Firefox

Again, there are two methods to refresh a page in Mozilla Firefox on Mac. There is a refresh button right next to the navigational button near the address bar, as circled in the above image. Click it to refresh the page.

The second way is to press ‘command’ + ‘R.’

How to refresh Chrome/edge/ brave or other chromium based browsers?

Screenshot of a Google Chrome browser with refresh button highlighted.
Refreshing Chrome browser

Like Safari, there are three ways to refresh the google chrome browser and its relative chromium browsers. You can click the ‘Refresh’ button sandwiched between the navigation and home buttons. Please check the above image. I have marked the refresh button with a red circle.

The second way to refresh google Chrome is to use the obvious shortcut.

Hold the ‘command’ button and ‘R.’ This keyboard shortcut will work on most browsers.

The third way is to go into the menu, click the View menu, and find ‘Reload This Page’ there.

What to do if refreshing doesn’t work.

Refreshing the page didn’t work?

Dont worry.

There is a ‘hard refresh’ to save you.

What is a Hard Browser Refresh or hard refresh?

Hard refresh is basically a better version of ‘Refresh’, where it deletes the history and cache of this page and reloads the page once again fully.

  • To hard reset Safari, hold the keys ‘Option’ + ‘command’ and press ‘R.’

  • To hard refresh Chrome and related browsers, Hold the ‘Shift’ Key and click on reload button or hold the ‘Shift’ and ‘Command’ keys and press the ‘R’ key.

  • To hard refresh the firefox browser, like the chrome browser, you can either hold the ‘Shift’ key and click the reload button or hold the ‘Shift’ and ‘Command’ keys and press the ‘R’ key.

    Hard refresh will solve most of the issues.

How to refresh the Mail app?

Don’t you receive the latest emails on your Mac? You can refresh mail app to receive new messahes. Mail refresh is going to be very easy.

All you need to do is open the mail app, find the ✉️ button (also called the envelope button), and click it. This way, you will be connected to the servers, and the computer will synchronise the mail.

Alternatively, you can go to the ‘mailbox’ menu and choose ‘Get New Mail’ or ‘synchronise’ based on your need to refresh mail on which account. ‘Synchronise’ will synchronise the inbox, sent messages, drafts etc.

How to refresh Messages on Mac?

It is easy to refresh the iMessage on the Mac by forcing sync. All you need is to follow the below steps.

  1. Open the iMessage or ‘Messages.’

  2. Click on ‘Messages’ on the menu bar (This is next to the apple menu)

  3. Click on settings

  4. Click on iMessage

  5. Click on Sync now.

Your Mac will start synchronising the messages. This way, you can refresh your messages on Mac.

Note: You need to enable messages on iCloud on your phone to sync messages on your phone to the messages app of your MacBook.


The bottom line is that you cannot refresh your desktop on Mac as you did on your Windows desktop. We have also seen how to refresh the web browsers and a few other apps on Mac. I hope it was helpful. 

FAQs or Frequently Asked Questions.

Is it true that clearing my browser cache will resolve all my issues?

Yes and No, Clearing caches will resolve most of the issues in browsing but not all.

Is deleting my cache going to save up space on my hard drive?

Yes. Deleting cache and temporary internet files on a PC or Mac will save up space on your hard drive.

What F key is a refresh on Mac?

There is no keyboard shortcut on Mac, and there is no way one could refresh the Mac desktop.

Thanks for reading.

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