Since Lion still won't allow me to search the SMB volumes I need, I'm planning on syncing them to a local folder that will be indexed by Spotlight. What's the best way to sync folders automatically in the background? I don't want to open up an app and manually hit a button to capture the newly added files, so I'm hoping that there's something out there. Thanks for your help!


2 Answers 2


Have a look at the answers to this question: Auto sync local files to remote many of those suggestions are also relevant to you.

Another approach, if all you are trying to do is get Spotlight to index the SAMBA share, is to try running the commands:

mdutil /Volumes/x -i on mdutil /Volumes/x -p on

where x is the Volume name of the drive.

I have heard that this will enable Spotlight to index the network share.

More info and discussion here:


  • Thanks for your response. I'll look into your syncing suggestion. For the moment, I've got a couple automator actions running on folders when new files are added. This will be indexed by spotlight and seems to work ok for now.
    – Jared
    Aug 15, 2011 at 16:02
  • I tried using your terminal commands, and after the first one I get a response of "Indexing and searching disabled." After the second I get "Error: datastore publishing not implemented." It seems to be an issue pertaining to Lion and its new Samba engine. I'm hopeful Apple will implement searching again because without it network shares lose lots of value.
    – Jared
    Aug 15, 2011 at 16:04

Rsync will sync a folder in the background. Here is the Apple man page.

  • Be careful with rsync. People call it a sync tool, but it doesn't track operations (like e.g. Dropbox does). So it can't know if you deleted file X on computer A or added file X on computer B. Oct 13, 2011 at 7:29

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