What to do with “Safari Can’t Open the Page” message

You may have been browsing your favorite site on Safari when suddenly, and the message “Safari Can’t Open the Page”appeared.

There are a number of reasons why this message may have come up — and, luckily, just as many ways to fix the problem. From simple solutions, like restarting Safari, to reinstalling macOS if all else fails, here’s our complete guide to troubleshooting when Safari can’t open a web page.

How to fix “Safari Can’t Open the Page”?

Check the URL

One of the most common reasons a web page may have trouble loading is a typo in the URL. Check the address you’ve typed in and make sure you haven’t made any mistakes. If you have, simply correct the mistake, and your page should load correctly.

Use a different browser

If you continue to have difficulties with Safari no matter what you do, you may need to switch to another browser, like Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.

Reload the page

Refreshing the page that can’t be opened is the quickest and easiest fix to this issue. This is especially effective when the error results from an interrupted internet connection.

There are three ways you can reload a page in Safari:

  • Press the circular refresh button on the right of the page’s URL in the address bar.
  • Go to View > Reload Page.
  • Use the keyboard shortcut [COMMAND] + [R].

That’s it! Your page should reload as usual.

Restart Safari

As with many Mac issues, a simple restart is often all you need to do to remedy the problem. If reloading a page in Safari doesn’t solve the issue, try quitting and relaunching the browser. After reopening Safari, your desired page should load normally.

Clear DNS cache 

Some websites may be unreachable because their domain details have changed. While your Mac still remembers the website name correctly, the domain information (which is coded in numbers) could be outdated or incorrect. It’s usually solved by clearing the DNS cache (Domain Name Server).

You can use a free tool that comes with CleanMyMac X:

Download the app for free (this version is notarized by Apple)
Launch the program and click on Maintenance.
Check Flush DNS Cache in the menu that appears.

Generally, the errors like this are solved by clearing browser caches. And while you are still in CleanMyMac X, you can run the cache-clearing tool. Just click on the System Junk in the sidebar and follow the instructions on screen.

After you’ve cleared Safari cache with CleanMyMac X, the issue will hopefully be resolved.

Clear Safari cache and website data

Your Safari cache and site data can sometimes be to blame for errors like this one. Emptying your cache is the best way to see if this is the culprit. (You can check out our in-depth guide on how to clear your cache in Safari here.)

To quickly clear your Safari cache and site data:

  1. From the Menu bar, go to Safari > Preferences (Hint: You can also access Safari preferences with the keyboard shortcut [COMMAND] + [,])
  2. Go to the Privacy tab and click Manage Website Data
  3. You can remove data from each site individually or select Remove All to clear the data from all websites.

Keep in mind that when you clear your cache and site data, saved information like passwords will be cleared, and you’ll have to re-enter them when signing in to websites.

Check your internet connection

An interrupted internet connection is often to blame for browser issues. If you receive a message that “Safari Can’t Open the Page” every time you try to access a website (no matter which website it is), chances are, your internet connection is to blame.

Make sure that your internet connection is active and turned on. You can check whether you’re connected to a network by clicking the Wi-Fi icon at the top right of the Menu bar

Hint:

If you’re having trouble connecting to your Wi-Fi, check out our troubleshooting article here.

Make sure your software is updated

If you haven’t updated Safari in a while, now is a good time to do so! Any bugs in your current version of Safari that may cause issues when loading web pages have likely been fixed in the most recent update.

To check for available updates:

  • Open App Store menu and go to Preferences tab.
    1. To turn on automatic updates, check the boxes marked Automatic Updates
    2. To manually check for updates, click Updates in the App Store sidebar.

      Once you’ve updated Safari to the latest version, you should be good to go without any issues. If you still have trouble…

      Reset Safari

      As a last-ditch effort, you may reinstall your Safari altogether. But for now, we’ll try a lighter approach. We’ll reset the browser to its default state.

      The reset is once again possible with a free version of CleanMyMac X. This step doesn’t erase your user-created data and only re-writes Safari’s preferences.

      Once you’ve downloaded a free version of CleanMyMac X, launch the app and go to the Uninstaller tab.

      1. From here, select Safari and click on a triangle button that says “Show”
      2. In dropdown menu under “Uninstall” choose Reset.

      Now check Safari-related items you’d like to reset.

      Reinstall the macOS and Safari

      When all else fails, you may need to take somewhat more drastic measures. If you’re still unable to load any web pages on Safari, you may have to reinstall the browser, which requires you to reinstall macOS — remember that Safari is the default application that cannot be deleted.

      To reinstall macOS:

      1. Restart your Mac (Apple menu > Restart).
      2. Press and hold [COMMAND] + [R] as soon as your Mac starts up. Hold the keys down until the macOS Utilities window appears.
      3. Select the second option, Reinstall macOS, and follow the instructions to reinstall your operating system.

      Once you’ve done that, you shouldn’t experience any more issues with Safari refusing to load sites. Hope this article was helpful to you.

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