I know in the past OS X did not support indexing network drives. Has this changed? Do more recent versions of OS X such as Yosemite support spotlight on network drives?

I am thinking of investing in a NAS storage device such as Synology and spotlight support is a requirement. Since I have lots of data on my external drives right now.

up vote 28 down vote accepted

Indexing of an AFP-network drive isn't a problem:

To enable spotlight indexing on a network drive open Terminal.app and enter:

 mdutil /Volumes/name -i on

To disable the indexing of a connected network drive:

 mdutil /Volumes/name -i off

To check the status of indexing on a connected network drive:

 mdutil /Volumes/name -s

Source

In the comments there, a Synology NAS has been mentioned explicitly:

MacHouis • a year ago
Thanks a lot, it works very fine :):):). I had to mount the volume (a Synology Ethernet server) in afp to start the Spotlight Indexing... thanks thanks thanks...

This also works for older Mac OS Xs (in the example below it's Lion). Make sure that you've switched to 'Shared' in the search window:

search

  • 2
    If I unmount a network volume and mount again does OS X start the index all over again or is it smart enough to only do an incremental scan? – Scott Walter Jan 1 '15 at 16:36
  • 1
    @ScottWalter I think it's smart enough to just perform an incremental scan. I just tested it with a Mac Server share (Mavericks) and since the (shared) drive already has been indexed by the Server itself nothing happened at all after entering 'mdutil /Volumes/ShareName -i on' on the client side (Lion)... – klanomath Jan 1 '15 at 16:49
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    Trying to index my filetransporter, which is a FUSE mount. No joy so far: "Error: invalid operation. Error: unknown indexing state" – Andrew Wolfe Oct 14 '15 at 2:40
  • @AndrewWolfe I also get that for NFS mounts – Michael May 26 '16 at 23:47
  • 1
    @Michael Indexing only works with AFP and SMB shares – klanomath May 26 '16 at 23:53

To enable spotlight indexing on a network drive:

mdutil /Volumes/name -i on

To disable the indexing of a connected network drive:

mdutil /Volumes/name -i off

Source

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