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 Mountain Lion. Whatever I search for, no results. My tagged files are still tagged and I can use them via OS X’s “smart folders“ and third-party tools. It even works in Finder windows when entering only tagname and choosing the proposed tag. I use OS X 10.9 (13A603).

Is there any switch to enable it in the Spotlight dialogue again or could it just be a bug or even a known issue? I haven’t found anything so far.

Thank you for your help.

1 Answer 1


I don't know the definitive answer, but we could usually solve these issues by rebuilding the spotlight index. Takes a couple of hours, but most issues are fixed that way:

sudo mdutil -E / #deletes the spotlight index
sudo mdutil -i on / # starts the reindexing process

Additionally, you can use the commands here for an even more lowlevel approach

  • Thank you for your answer. Rebuilding the Spotlight index did not help in my case.
    – lejonet
    May 18, 2014 at 18:21

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