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

learn more… | top users | synonyms

6
votes
1answer
1k 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
269 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
2answers
349 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
936 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
2k 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
votes
0answers
50 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
500 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
2k 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
222 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
409 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
800 views

Add Spotlight Comments without tags on OS X Mavericks

I would like to add comments to files or folders. On previous OS X versions, there would be a text field to add comments that become searchable via Spotlight. Now, in OS X 10.9 Mavericks the text ...
0
votes
5answers
2k views

How can I launch a printer scanner from Spotlight?

I can go to the "Printers & Scanners" panel from Spotlight, but I cannot call the scanner directly. Is there any way to make Spotlight index a shortcut to the default printer's Scanner app? It ...
0
votes
2answers
250 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: ...
4
votes
1answer
468 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, ...
3
votes
1answer
6k views

Spotlight menu item on OS X 10.9 sometimes does not function (beeps instead)

I'm running into a situation now and then when the Spotlight menu on OS X 10.9 can't be activated. When I click on its magnifying glass icon I receive only an error indication (beep tone) but get no ...
2
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
300 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, ...
5
votes
1answer
4k 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
234 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
0answers
727 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. ...
1
vote
2answers
8k 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
1answer
520 views

How to enable missing tag search in Spotlight?

OS X Mavericks adds better support for tags. You can search tagged files using Spotlight with the query tag:tagname. However, this stopped working for me a few days after upgrading form OS X ...
6
votes
2answers
306 views

Trackpad (+ spotlight) semi-unresponsive, Mavericks on a 2010 MBP

Ever since I upgraded my 2010 Macbook Pro from Mountain Lion to Mavericks, an issue has been occuring at seemingly random moments. Without warning, my trackpad will no longer allow me to click or use ...
0
votes
0answers
30 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?
0
votes
1answer
324 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?
1
vote
2answers
2k 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
1answer
46 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 ...
4
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
835 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
129 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

Disable Spotlight Index on 10.8 on Specific Volumes

To switch off indexing in Terminal I use: sudo mdutil -a -i off This disables it with the -a switch across all volumes and the -i off part turns "off" the indexing. If connected to my iMac is the ...
1
vote
0answers
269 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
629 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: ...
1
vote
1answer
8k 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
221 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
402 views

Applications/Xcode vs Developer/Applications/Xcode

I have OSX 10.8 with Xcode 4.6.3 installed (it shows under App Store). When I Spotlight-search "xcode" I see two results: Xcode – Mac & Xcode – Developer. The first launches as expected, but with ...
0
votes
1answer
434 views

Why is Automator not working with Spotlight Search?

I'm running an Automator Workflow that searches a provided directory, and then does a standard Filter Finder Items in order to make sure it's only going to be working with aliases. Spotlight failed ...
1
vote
0answers
254 views

Draft emails on Spotlight Search

When I access my Drafts Gmail folder on my iPhone 4S, there are no saved mails in the draft. However, when I search under Spotlight Search, I get a bunch of emails I started writing once but never ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Find a specific file with automator

The basic question is: How can I pass a filename to the Spotlight search module in Automator? The essential problem: I have hundreds of broken aliases scattered throughout a particular ...
1
vote
2answers
117 views

Keyboard Shortcuts For Navigating Spotlight?

I find keyboard shortcuts very useful, and whilst I know quite a few of the "general ones", I don't know any concerning using Spotlight with the exception of Command-SpaceBar to launch it. What ...
1
vote
1answer
179 views

Why does Finder search not find my .c files?

My goal is, that the finder search finds .c files that have the search keywords in it. It seems to work for others but not for me: but searching for main doesn't yield any results: What do I ...
1
vote
2answers
312 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Exclude sub-folders from Finder search

How can I force Finder to only search the current folder, ignoring the contents of all the sub-folders? I don't want to exclude the sub-folders permanently from Spotlight, just for a certain search. ...
0
votes
2answers
101 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
506 views

Spotlight won't find apps after AppStore updates them

This started happening with Type2Phone, an app from Houdah Software. Every time after I would update the app via the AppStore, Spotlight would no longer find the app (I use Spotlight for app ...
2
votes
1answer
408 views

Why doesn't Spotlight show invisible files that I know exist?

I am running Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) and had to edit an invisible file as part of an Android project. While I eventually found it, Spotlight was of no help, since it could not find an invisible ...
2
votes
1answer
480 views

Prevent partitions from Spotlight indexing each other

I have a single MacBook Pro partitioned into two drives, each running a copy of Mountain Lion. In Partition X, I would like to disable Spotlight from indexing Partition Y. In Partition Y, I want to ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Does Spotlight normally index links in ~/Applications?

I have installed MacVim through homebrew, and this resulted in an alias in ~/Applications that points to /usr/local/Cellar/macvim/7.3-66/MacVim.app. Unfortunately MacVim does not show up in Spotlight ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

Why did some applications have to rebuild their database after a Time Machine rollback?

Recently my system (10.8) got totally borked, so I booted into recovery mode and rewrote the entire disk from a two day old Time Machine backup. When I started back up, I found that: Spotlight ...
1
vote
0answers
424 views

Trackpad, mouse will not click. Command+Tab switcher is invisible

I've had this issue come up about four times now on my 15" retina Macbook Pro, running Mac OS X 10.8.4. The trackpad will no longer click — neither right nor left click works. Regardless of whether I ...