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

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9
votes
3answers
3k views

Spotlight makes repeated http requests

I'm running Little Snitch and every time I open Spotlight to find something it makes a bunch of http requests out to various websites, some I've visited in the past some I've absolutely no idea about. ...
4
votes
1answer
89 views

'mdls' and 'mdimport' interaction: good practice question

Am I correct to assume that, in order to ensure a query in the terminal such as: mdls -name kMDItemContentCreationDate /var/log/system.log always returns the actual creation date of said file (...
0
votes
0answers
9 views

Disable .Spotlight, .Trashes and .fseventsd on removable media [duplicate]

I am making removable media (USB drives) for distribution using my Mac. MacOS keeps adding "hidden" directories in the root directory, like .fseventsd, .Trashes, and .Spotlight-V100. How do I ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

To give priority to .tex files in Spotlight search?

I would like to search first my notes (.tex). How can you set priority to tex -files in Spotlight search?
3
votes
0answers
170 views

Using spotlight index on a file share on Server.app

I have a MacMini server (Server.app 5.0.15 on El Capitan 10.11.2), and connects to file share from another MacMini also with El Capitan 10.11.2. Spotlight indexes for the file shares are NOT ...
0
votes
0answers
52 views

Spotlight does not load mail from Outlook after upgrade from 2011 to 2016

I upgraded Outlook (whole Office) from 2011 version to 2016, and afterwards there is no results from imported mail. Only new messages get to the search results, and because Outlook is using Spotlight ...
85
votes
13answers
91k views

How to stop OS X from writing Spotlight and Trash files to memory cards and USB sticks?

When plugging a USB stick into a Mac, OS X creates a number of hidden files on the stick, including a Spotlight index and Trash folder. Example from the terminal for a USB stick "Untitled": $ ls -a /...
0
votes
2answers
21 views

Find the file that corresponds to a certain message in Mail.app?

Every message in Mail.app corresponds to a file in the filesystem (typically located somewhere here /Users/[username]/Library/Mail/V3/[account name]). Is there an easy way to locate the corresponding ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

How to search for documents on OSX that are NOT contained within a given folder using Finder, Spotlight or some other native tool?

I have a bunch of formatted spreadsheets scattered all across my computer. There are literally thousands of them. I want to get them all into a centralized folder and have mostly done that, i.e. most ...
1
vote
1answer
102 views

How to remove only News from Siri Suggestions

How do I remove only News from Siri Suggestions? I like the quick access to frequently used apps and contacts there. I don't like being informed of the latest murder spree, political news, or ...
2
votes
1answer
709 views

Apps keep crashing after OS X update

I've just updated my MBP 13'' mid 2010 to OS X 10.10.5 (14F27). I remember that the last update was iTunes 12.2.2.25. After this update, Mac rebooted and installed all the features. Now I'm unable ...
4
votes
2answers
488 views

Search files by size or star-rating using spotlight

I'm trying to search files by their size or star-rating using Spotlight. I know it can be done using finder's Command+F, but I cannot figure out which is the syntax I should be using in Spotlight's ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

Performance problems, possibly malware?

I have concerns about malware or something significantly affecting the performance of my iMac. As you can see from the screen shot below I have updated to OS X Yosemite Version 10.10.5, but I did ...
0
votes
2answers
245 views

QuickLook does not preview .txt files

I have the problem that QuickLook does not allow me to preview .txt files, despite being plain text. For instance here you see—no preview. Pressing Space does not help However, Spotlight does ...
1
vote
0answers
88 views

Why can't my spotlight open any application?

I can search and find anything on Spotlight, so I think my index works. However, when I try to open an application, even terminal, I just get a spinning beach ball until Spotlight disappears. Why am I ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

El Capitan - Weather search in Spotlight not working

I've just upgraded my Mac to OS X El Capitan and typed: weather in Sao Paulo, BR I got nothing. I'm actually in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Any ideas?
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Spotlight gets Last Modified date wrong on network share?

Not quite sure what's going on here, but see this image: Notice the foreground window is a "Get Info" and shows that the folder "Season 4" was last modified Yesterday. However the Finder window ...
37
votes
3answers
9k views

Applications Don't Show Up in Spotlight

Spotlight has stopped showing any results for my Applications. I've tried reindexing and removing the index so it rebuilds it. No change. I've tried adding Applications to the Privacy tab and removing ...
0
votes
4answers
3k views

How to get old Spotlight Search View back for Yosemite?

I do not like Yosemite's default Spotlight search. It is in the middle of screen and I can see very little outputs at once. It is so much helpful when it is full screen. Example of the window ...
0
votes
0answers
49 views

Look Up - AppleScript command

Is there an apple script command for the "Look Up" action/service? If not, what would be a decent way to mimic it? If you don't know what I'm talking about it's the popover when you three-finger ...
2
votes
0answers
19 views

Why does spotlight incorrectly calculate modular powers?

Spotlight does not calculate the correct result of (31^x) % 35 where x >= 11?. It shows for x=12 while the correct result is 1. How can this be? It works for all smaller powers of 31 modulo 35.
3
votes
1answer
653 views

cannot turn off spotlight indexing on external drive

I know this question has been asked before, but the solutions suggested are not working for me. I just finished attaching a brand new external hard-drive and waiting for 14 hours for Time Machine to ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Most of the time spotlight is showing nothing after upgrading to el capitan

I use spotlight a lot but after upgrading to el capitan most of the time its showing empty window. Its very annoying. How can i solve this problem?
1
vote
0answers
40 views

How can I find the pictures I uploaded from an iphone on Mac?

I uploaded all my photos on my photo album to my Mac. My Mac is OS X 10.9.5, I've searched under images, folders, photos, and I cannot find the entire album yet when I type image onto the spotlight ...
4
votes
1answer
160 views

Is there a way to turn Wi-Fi on/off using Spotlight?

Is there a way to turn Wi-Fi on/off using Spotlight, or do I always have to use the mouse and click on the Wi-Fi icon in the taskbar? Spotlight is pretty powerful, and I would love to have an easy ...
1
vote
2answers
10k 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

Spotlight custom dictionary search doesn't work

Since I upgraded to El Capitan, Spotlight has refused to look up for definitions in my custom dictionary (hungairan-english). Instead, it sticks itself with Apple's default English-English dictionary. ...
2
votes
1answer
197 views

Finding eBooks (.epub) via content on my Mac

I have a lot of eBooks on my Mac. But whereas I can find any PDF on my Mac by searching their content, this doesn't work with Spotlight when applied to .epub files. (The only clumsy way of doing this ...
0
votes
1answer
19 views

Search Spotlight for a file of specific type between two dates

I've had a hard time tracking down a way to search for documents of a specific type between two dates in Spotlight. Maybe it's not possible? I'd like to be able to type something like this in ...
3
votes
1answer
613 views

Why doesn't El Capitan Spotlight search in custom dictionary?

Since I upgraded to El Capitan, Spotlight has refused to look up for definitions in my custom dictionary (built by me). Instead, it sticks itself with Apple's default English-English dictionary. Note ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

How to list all files with Finder Comment using unix?

How i can get path of all files, folders which has Finder comment and also the comment. Like this: /path/here/file.txt TAB finder comment is here /path4/here2/folder TAB finder comment is here I ...
0
votes
0answers
49 views

kMDItemKind queries do not work under El Capitan?

I was trying to perform a query that I am sure it worked in the past: mdfind "kMDItemKind == 'Application' && kMDItemDisplayName == '*Firefox*'" This does not brind any results. The ...
0
votes
1answer
298 views

GUI applications installed with homebrew cannot be launched using Spotlight [duplicate]

I have installed cocoa versions of both Emacs and MacVim using homebrew. After the installation, the actual applications are installed in /usr/local/opt/emacs/Emacs.app and /usr/local/opt/macvim/...
0
votes
1answer
113 views

How can I search folder names from Open/Save Dialog in El Capitan?

When I switched from Windows to OS X Mavericks, it took me a few months to learn that the fastest way to open or save documents in an application was to search for the folder they should be in. Under ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Ghost contacts in spotlight

I have a strange situation, where I see multiple versions of a single contact. When I search for a name I see current version (from iCloud) old version (don't know from where) an even older version (...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How to locate a file in Spotlight using folder and file name?

I often want to navigate to a file or folder that does not have a unique name. Instead, the parent folder in combination with the file or foldern name makes it unique. Here are a few examples: I ...
12
votes
2answers
65k views

New iOS9 Spotlight search not finding contacts

I've just upgraded to iOS 9, and the new Spotlight search isn't finding contacts for me - it sometimes finds contacts, but not the one I'm searching for. I've turned off every app in Spotlight search,...
0
votes
0answers
7 views

Access spotlight from within apps

Is there a way to access spotlight from within apps on iPhone 6 iOS 9? I expected it to be something like drag down with three fingers, but I can't find a way to do it.
0
votes
0answers
25 views

Very odd problem with the “¨” character in Spotlight

I have a very odd problem, whenever I search for something in Spotlight, say, Safari, I often misspress "¨" instead of enter, if I then press enter again when it says "Safari¨" in spotlight, I can't ...
39
votes
3answers
11k 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

How to write ExifTool keywords which Spotlight can see?

I try to write keywords to PNG images using ExifTool but OS X's Spotlight cannot see these keywords at all. The developer of ExifTool does not know about Spotlight, so he cannot help: "I wouldn'...
0
votes
0answers
49 views

Spotlight Calculator Scientific Notation

I use Spotlight a lot to perform small calculations, often with very small numbers. Spotlight (cmd + space) is able to understand scientific notation input like 2.5E-1 = 0.25 but the output is ...
0
votes
0answers
87 views

How to reduce ways to access spotlight, iPhone 5S, iOS 9.1?

When I'm on the first pane of my home screen on my iPhone 5s, I can access spotlight by dragging down and also swiping right (going left another pane). Why are there two ways to access spotlight? Is ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Spotlight Euro Exchange rate seems stuck to 2 weeks ago

I use Spotlight to currency conversions several times a day. E.g. I type into Spotlight 100 EUR to GBP or 500 USD to CZK However I have just noticed that the exchange rate is stuck to that of 2-3 ...
-1
votes
1answer
180 views

What is Spotlight on iPad – where are Spotlight icons displayed?

I'm developing a Universal iOS game with Xcode and I have to supply 3 images for icons. An icon image for the home screen (app). An icon image for iPad in Settings. An icon image for iPad ...
4
votes
0answers
2k views

Spotlight not connecting to internet

My problem is that Spotlight shows no results from internet sources (Wikipedia, iTunes Store, etc.). I've reindexed my drive twice, cleared all the caches, and reset the NVRAM. Still not working. I ...
2
votes
0answers
5k views

Why is SpotlightNetHelp denied file-read-data for root?

I'm getting many of these two similar errors on my console. 10/21/15 11:06:29.737 AM sandboxd[140]: ([368]) SpotlightNetHelp(368) deny file-read-data / 10/21/15 11:07:11.000 AM kernel[0]: ...
7
votes
1answer
11k views

See progress of Spotlight re-indexing in El Capitan [duplicate]

Other Questions and Answers address how to check the progress of Spotlight rebuilding its index, previous to El Capitan: Click the Spotlight menu. The menu/panel that appears reports a progress bar if ...
0
votes
0answers
10 views

I can't access most Contacts from Spotlight in new iOS 9 [duplicate]

Can someone please help me figure out how to access all contacts from Spotlight? If I type Linda, I get a couple of Linda contact options, but not the one I'm looking for. This has never been the case....
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Is finder search supposed to work as “full text search” at all in OS X El Capitan?

Scenario: I am trying to find a picture (which is named DSC_2345.jpg) inside the Photos Library in Finder. When I type "234" (without quotes) directly in the finder search field, all the photos whose ...