Why Does Safari Quit Unexpectedly?

by Kefa Olang ; Updated September 28, 2017

Safari will crash, freeze and quit unexpectedly for a number of reasons, such as network connection problems and damaged or erratic plug-ins. When some of these issues interfere with the browser's files, it will close when you visit a certain page or play multimedia content such as videos. Apple provides several solutions to maximize Safari's performance.

Add-ons and Plug-ins

Third-party add-ons and plug-ins can include software such as toolbars and download managers. While they can make Safari more interactive, they can also cause problems if they're damaged or incompatible with the version you're using. You can view your installed plug-ins by clicking the "Installed Plug-ins" option found on the "Safari" menu. Updating your plug-ins can decrease unexpected Safari crashes. In addition, disabling plug-ins from the Security tab on the browser's preference window can be helpful. If a specific plug-in is problematic, opening the Library folder in the Finder window and then opening the Internet Plug-Ins folder will display installed plug-ins. From there, move the plug-ins to a different location. Enabling the plug-ins from the browser's preferences can help you determine which ones are problematic and need to be uninstalled.

Network Connection

Safari will also quit unexpectedly if your networking connection fails. If your modem or wireless router is no longer connecting to the network, sometimes pressing the reset button on the device will restore connectivity. If that doesn't restore your network connection, refer to the modem or router's manual for specific troubleshooting guidelines for your device. The problem can also originate from your Internet Service Provider, which can offer instructions about resetting your modem and router to restore the signal as necessary.

Resetting and Reinstalling Safari

If the browser is still closing unexpectedly, one or more of its files is probably corrupt or damaged. Resetting Safari can restore the browser to the default state because it clears content such as browsing cache, cookies, saved names and passwords. The browser's cache refers to your Web history, which includes content such as the websites you visit, searches you perform and content you download. Cookies are small text files that websites download on your computer to keep track of your browsing tendencies so they can deliver specific content to you. To reset the browser, click the Safari menu and click the "Reset Safari" option to bring up the "Reset Safari" window. From there, select the components you want to clear and click the Reset button to reset the browser automatically. the browser will reboot. When the browser reboots, your browsing history will be cleared, the top sites will be reset and all cookies will be removed. However, saved bookmarks will not be lost. You can't undo this operation once it's done. If the problem persists, Apple recommends downloading and reinstalling Safari.

Tips and Recommendations

Installing the latest system updates by clicking the Apple logo and clicking the "Software Update" link will install available updates and improve your computer's performance. If the browser continues to quit unexpectedly, Apple recommends creating a new administrator account to determine whether the problem is with the browser or the current administrator account. If the browser performs optimally with the new account, the issue is with the old administrator account. If you created Web clip widgets, Apple says, some of those Web pages used to create widgets can cause Safari to close unexpectedly, so go into the Dashboard and delete the widgets to improve the browser's performance.

About the Author

Kefa Olang has been writing articles online since April 2009. He has been published in the "Celebration of Young Poets" and has an associate degree in communication and media arts from Dutchess Community College, and a bachelor's degree in broadcasting and mass communication from the State University of New York, Oswego.