Questions about Spotlight, a system-wide desktop search feature of Apple's Mac OS X operating system.

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1
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0answers
38 views

Correct Way to Check if Spotlight Has Indexed a Folder's Contents

Okay, so I've written a script that uses mdfind to more quickly match files, however, I need to find the best way to check whether a target directory is indexed or not, so I can fall back to using ...
0
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0answers
25 views

Best Way to Add Metadata to a File

Okay, so I have a fairly simple script that uses mdfind to quickly find files matching certain criteria so that I can run some operations on them. However, I don't want to run these operations again ...
0
votes
0answers
11 views

The source of frequent crashes that require rebuilding the Spotlight index?

My early-2009 Mac Pro has taken to freezing relatively frequently, I think always when Safari is running. The machine must then be power-cycled, and when it comes back up, the Spotlight index is hosed ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Spotlight doesn't find the contents of at least one file

Goal - find a clever way to discover what Spotlight has (or hasn't indexed). I have an xls spreadsheet that has the names and emails addresses of people who attended a recent course of mine. In the ...
2
votes
1answer
153 views

Decimal separator setting for the Spotlight calculator

I use the Spotlight calculator a lot but since the upgrade to OS X Mavericks the decimal pointer has changed to a , instead of the . as in a previous release. Probably it now respects some locale ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

How do I make applications open on the primary display and not the active display?

I love the improvements that Apple made to multiple displays in Mavericks, but there is one thing that really gets on my nerves. If I'm using an application on my secondary display, and I use ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Weird behavior of spotlight & program icons

My spotlight is acting a bit scatchy, it shows every program as a rar? archive. Did a rebuild of the index file. Did a repair permissions. Who can Help me?
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Locating an app by its bundle identifier from the command line

I am looking for a way to find an app's location on the system from the command line using its bundle identifier. I can open it like this: open -b 'com.zerotier.ZeroTierOne' ... where ...
2
votes
1answer
752 views

How can I fix the Spotlight index for an encfs-mounted directory?

Until recently, on OS X 10.8, I was using Alfred (which in turn uses Spotlight) to search files and directories on an encfs-mounted partition (which is mounted off a folder in my Dropbox directory). ...
0
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0answers
31 views

How can I prevent “Open With…” from accessing external drives?

Frequently, when I try to open the (10.9) Finder's "Open With..." menu, I experience a delay that appears to be due to connected FireWire drives. This delay is very long when the drives need to spin ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

Include files from secondary hard drive in spotlight searches

I have an SSD as my boot partition and a HDD for all my documents on my Mac (OS X Mavericks). I have noticed that I am unable to search for files on Spotlight that are located on my HDD. I suspect ...
1
vote
1answer
102 views

Search in a particular folder and subfolder through Spotlight

As the titles indicates, I would like to search a file in a particular folder, and its subfolders, through Spotlight. Is it possible to do that in Spotlight? If so, how can that be done?
3
votes
1answer
71 views

Spotlight keeps forgetting not to index BOOTCAMP partition

For special needs, I must mount BOOTCAMP partition as read-writable. I also add BOOTCAMP partition into Spotlight Privacy because it needs not to be indexed. But once every few days, Mac forgets ...
0
votes
2answers
81 views

Search a folder that is excluded from Spotlight

I have excluded a folder from Spotlight, because this folder has a lot of files so it often fills up the results, no matter what I'm searching for. However, sometimes I still want to search this ...
2
votes
1answer
106 views

Exclude all .git or .svn folders from Spotlight index

I would like to exclude all the .git and .svn folders on my hardrive from the Spotlight index. I know I can manually add them through the GUI but since they are many of them, and often new ones, it ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

Why would you choose Alfred over Spotlight?

Mac OS X is already loaded with Apple Spotlight, why use Alfred? What does Alfred bring to the table that Spotlight doesn't?
0
votes
0answers
44 views

Why does preview always open the first page, when spotlight is beeing used?

When I open a PDF by searching it in Spotlight, preview opens its first page. It makes the option in Preview to "Start on last viewed pages" quite useless, I have to find my previous page again. When ...
0
votes
2answers
142 views

How is font metadata stored?

Right after downloading a font, you can see it has a lot of metadata. For example, if you download the Sansation font and run mdls Sansation_Regular.ttf you will get this output: ...
2
votes
0answers
128 views

Find symbolic links (’s names) with Spotlight (Finder)

underwhelmed by the fact that OS X’s Aliases got really big with Mountain Lion (Lion?) I basically switched to using symbolic links instead. Now I’m just learning the hard way that Spotlight (or, ...
1
vote
3answers
5k views

Spotlight doesn't work anymore in OS X Mountain Lion

I can't get Spotlight to search for any documents. When I search the Finder for documents, nothing happens and the Spotlight search through the menu bar only shows up web searches.
2
votes
0answers
660 views

Spotlight does not index folders or subfolders

After upgrading to OS X 10.9, spotlight only show result for files but not folders. I have checked the preferences and also reindex the parenting folder by adding and removing it to the privacy tab. ...
3
votes
1answer
169 views

Remove past versions from Spotlight searches?

Is there a way to prevent Spotlight from indexing past versions of documents (see attached image). On my system it seems to always recommend an old version as the top hit, requiring me to scroll ...
2
votes
1answer
219 views

Finder Search (spotlight) not finding all relevant results

I'm trying to remove an application manually by deleting it and any extras using the search function in Finder. As a backup, I also ran the app through AppCleaner to see if it caught anything as ...
8
votes
6answers
2k views

How can I create a Saved Search that excludes a specific folder from the results?

I'm trying to set up a Saved Search of my Mac that will exclude files in a folder called 'XYZ' from the search results. The reason is because I'm getting a ton of false positives from that folder that ...
1
vote
0answers
187 views

Spotlight integration of Thunderbird 24.1.0 in Maverick

I have Thunderbird 24.1.0 running on Maverick and it works nicely. I am wondering about the integration of spotlight and thunderbird. I can search in spotlight for my emails, which is what I want, ...
2
votes
1answer
261 views

Quicksilver and Spotlight

I have found that I need to run both Quicksilver and Spotlight. I consider this to be a waste of CPU and memory and would like to eliminate one of them probably Spotlight. The reason I would like to ...
2
votes
2answers
740 views

LaunchBar/Quicksilver as a replacement of Spotlight?

I asked about the usefulness of spotlight here, as I don't like the drag that spotlight causes all the time. What I found useful in Spotlight is those two. word lookup : spotlight opens ...
3
votes
1answer
548 views

How do I change Spotlight search engine?

when I use Spotlight, it offers to "Search web for: " (something like that, my system is german). When I use this feature, Chrome pops up and searches with the Yahoo search engine. Chrome is the ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

mdworker process always at 100%, even when not indexing

I'm trying to understand why mdworker is always at 100% even when (apparently) not indexing. If I open Spotlight, there's no message telling me that a drive is being indexed. If I run fs_usage -w -f ...
1
vote
2answers
684 views

Spotlight and Alfred can't find alias to Emacs.app

I installed Emacs.app with Homebrew, and used brew linkapps to create an alias in my /Applications directory. Since I updated to OS X Mavericks yesterday, Spotlight and Alfred can no longer see this ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

How to use spotlight for system commands such as shutdown? [duplicate]

I want to type in Spotlight commands such as shutdown, reboot, suspend or lock and make it execute it, just like Alfred does. How to make this possible with Spotlight?
12
votes
7answers
13k views

Why does Spotlight keep reindexing my system after updating to Lion?

Since I installed Lion, the Spotlight database keeps reindexing (which is taking several hours). It does this at least every second day. Are any other users experiencing this problem with Lion (i.e. ...
0
votes
1answer
257 views

Why does my iPhone Spotlight (Springboard) search show a little poop emoji in the corner?

It's kind of cute, but why is it doing this and how can I change it?
32
votes
3answers
5k views

How to place Dictionary definitions higher up in spotlight results

I used to use spotlight fairly frequently to quickly look up words in a dictionary. With Lion, I've noticed that my dictionary results have dropped down much lower in the list of results: I'd like ...
4
votes
4answers
382 views

Spotlight, please don't show mail, but still let me search in Mail app

When I search for stuff, even constraining with name:whatIwant, the majority of results are old e-mail messages and Safari history items. How can I get rid of these results, but still search my email ...
4
votes
3answers
278 views

Non-recursive spotlight search?

When using the Spotlight search at the top right of a finder window, I often want the search to be non-recursive, i.e. only look at files in that specific directory, not any directories within it. Is ...
0
votes
1answer
24 views

Spotlight hangs on ical item

My iMac (early 2009) is super slow and spotlight and timemachine doesnt work at all. I am suspecting the the spotlight index (which never seem to finish) is behind some of the performance issues. I ...
1
vote
2answers
165 views

How does Spotlight determine which category a file belongs to?

In Spotlight you can enable and disable file categories that will appear in search results. How does Spotlight determine that a certain file belongs to a certain category? The following specific ...
0
votes
0answers
113 views

iOS7, ability to search web via Spotlight search

Prior to iOS7, if someone wanted to search the web, generally the easiest way to do so was by entering your query into the spotlight, and then just clicking 'Search Safari/Wikipedia'. After upgrading ...
0
votes
1answer
3k views

How long should Lion take to set up Spotlight?

I updated my Mac from Snow Leopard 10.6.8 to Lion. Everything went well. The computer restarted when the OS setup finished. Now, Spotlight setup has been running for more than two hours. Is something ...
0
votes
2answers
213 views

Is there a way Spotlight indexes my Skim bookmarks/notes ?

I find Skim is a great pdf file reader and want to spend a great deal of time adding notes and bookmarks to some of the pdf files I have. I know Spotlight indexes pdf files but it doesn't seem to ...
0
votes
0answers
200 views

How can I restore Spotlight to menu bar?

I removed the Spotlight icon from the menu bar. I would like to restore it. I tried the recommended method: sudo mdutil -a -i on sudo chmod 755 ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

If swipe down on iOS7 gives Notification Centre, where's Spotlight?

I just upgraded to iOS 7 on an iPhone 4S. When I swipe down on any screen, I get Notification Center, not Spotlight. Anyone know which setting is wrong? My Google search results are riddled with ...
3
votes
1answer
538 views

Why do some app spotlight results show the “.app” extension, but not all?

Even though I've explicitly set the Finder preference to display all file extensions, I'm still finding that some apps do not show the file name extension in their Spotlight result. Here are some ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Disable Spotlight Index on 10.8 on Specific Volumes

To swtich off indexing in Terminal i use: sudo mdutil -a -i off This disables it with the -a swtich across all volumes and the -i off part turns "off" the indexing. If connected to my iMac is the ...
1
vote
0answers
124 views

Force Spotlight Comments to be written to .DS_Store

I've come to understand that in order for Spotlight comments to be viewable in the Finder, the extended attributes have to be written to the appropriate .DS_Store file. The problem is, every time I ...
1
vote
1answer
274 views

What does the undocumented switch, -t, do for the mdutil utility?

In the process of troubleshooting why my Time Machine was not completing and hadn't finished backing up since 4PM today - It's now 11:49PM -, I saw two console suspicious log entries as follows (btw: ...
5
votes
1answer
271 views

Why is mdfind only returning my most recently accessed files?

I've imported most of a javascript code base via mdimport (using the packaged SourceCode.mdimporter provided by Xcode) and it succeeds. However, mdfind only ever returns to me at most two results, ...
2
votes
1answer
399 views

Rules for Spotlight search (on osx 10.8)

I absolutely do not understand the rules that Spotlight (osx 10.8) uses to search my files. If I enter the query sbml and select filename from the dropdown menu, these are the results that come up: ...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

How do I stop OS X from treating an SuperDuper image on an external drive as part of my current installation?

Every night, I have SuperDuper! create an image of my hard drive to an external drive. This works great, and has saved me from system failures a number of times. However, OS X is constantly treating ...