Questions tagged [spotlight]

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

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Is there a way to invoke a Spotlight search from another Mac app?

I'd like to be able to do something like spotlight://tag:Red from other apps to open a Spotlight search in Finder. Is it possible, somehow? EDIT: I found and tried AppleScripts/AppleScript applet for ...
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Configure Spotlight to follow symlinks in directory tree

When using the search box in a Finder window, I would like to configure Spotlight so that a search will follow symlinks in the directory tree below the present folder. For example, I symlinked several ...
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How do I type "X feet Y inches" so that Spotlight suggests unit conversions?

I use the metric system, and when I want to convert imperial distance units of feet and inches, e.g. "5 feet 6 inches", I try to type it into Spotlight in iOS 15.5. If I use the format 5' I ...
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Monterey mail search not working

I upgraded from an old (~10 years) Mac running Mojave to a new M1 mac running Monterey. The upgrade was ok, but Mail does not return all possible results when I search it (I know this to be a fact ...
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Change Spotlight web search default keybindng

The default keybinding to search the web from Spotlight (⌘ CommandSpace) is ⌘ CommandB. Is it possible to change it? I haven't even found this keybinding documented on official website. (macOS Mojave ...
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How did I accidentally summon this helpful Finder search feature, and what is it called?

In MacOS Catalina (10.15.7) I somehow inadvertently turned on this very nice search feature in a Finder window. I can select several search criteria in pulldown menus and build a search via GUI rather ...
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How can I search a specific type of file on a macOS with a condition?

I want to search only files created by Fl Studio but if I search in Spotlight for files with the .flp extension I get also the autosaved versions of the files. Is there any way to search only the .flp ...
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Unnecessary locations for Spotlight indexing?

I've noticed Spotlight using a lot of processor time and when I review where it's digging about via sudo fs_usage mdworker mds, I see that most of the time is being spent in /System/Library/ and /...
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How to add/classify extensions for Spotlight searches?

When add query something trip kind:image to search by kind in Spotlight, it seems to be just a extension to the extension-type search. If so, how can I add new document types to the the definition of ...
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Stop Spotlight from indexing Time Machine during certain hours?

It seems from reading other posts that it's impossible to stop spotlight indexing Time Machine, even when you put Time Machine in the privacy tab, because it's necessary for Time Machine's ...
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Cannot remove startup volume from Spotlight exclude elements in Spotlight Preferences

In System Preferences > Spotlight > Privacy lately my MBP startup Volume is being added to the list of folders and volumes to be excluded from indexing. No matter if I remove it from the list: ...
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Spotlight: Unknown indexing state for newly created folders

I'm getting an "unknown indexing state" error on newly created folders at the root of an external volume. Error: % sudo mdutil -s /Volumes/DPPRaid/test2 /System/Volumes/Data/Volumes/...
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Spyware in MacOS: Spotlight Search Privacy

I have Macbook Pro 14.2 from 2017. I don't have Apple ID and I don't own Iphone or any other apple products. I wanted to know are Spotlight search private? Or, in my case is it possible to mask my ...
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2 votes
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Search for files that are NOT a specific kind on my Mac

I am trying to work out which fonts I have on my machine that are Type 1 Postscript fonts so I can avoid problems when Adobe stops supporting them next year. I have used kind:”type 1 outline font” ...
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Problems with searching in finder, spotlight and file-management on Mac

I got some problem with indexing of disk, Spotlight, searching in finder and file-management.(MacBook m1 2020) Finder is loading a lot of time, searching in it does not work, Spotlight does not work ...
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Is there a default setting for mdutil in macOS Monterey?

This question came up today after reindexing a directory with mdutil. At first I ran: ➜ ~ sudo mdutil -sav Password: /: Indexing enabled. /System/Volumes/Data: Indexing enabled. Scan ...
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Spotlight does not work on a volume. Big Sur

I have partitioned my hard drive into two volumes: BigMarc and Yo. I have a PowerBook pro 16 and OS Big Sur 11.6.5. I tried first the System Preferences and then a lot of commands in the terminal. But ...
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1 answer
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Folder in external SSD not found by Finder Search even though it exists

I have two folders in an external SSD with the name "sumatera": "REGION SUMATERA" and "REGION SUMATERA 500". However, when I search for it with the Finder's Search ...
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Folders disappearing from search result list after consulting them

We have a customer that is experiencing a strange behavior when he searches folders on his MacBook (Catalina 10.15.7, i7 2.2Ghz, 16GB Ram). For example : he searches for "2022-D00170" which ...
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Resetting drive data to test com.apple.TimeMachine DoNotOfferNewDisksForBackup

I'd like to be able to test automated disabling of TimeMachine asking to use a new drive. It's also made me curious about how macOS/OSX identifies "New Disks" vs ones it's seen before, and ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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mdfind using -name option

I get this result: user@10 $  mdfind kind:application -name "Seashore" -onlyin /Volumes/WD\ Elements /Volumes/WD Elements/backup 2018/Desktop/Seashore.app /Volumes/WD Elements/backup Juli ...
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Finder search doesn't work when searching individual folders in iCloud Drive

A few months ago I switched from backing up to an external drive using Time Machine to just having everything on my iCloud Drive and it automatically backing up any changes I make. Since then, I've ...
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Why would Spotlight be using lots of CPU when only a few things are being indexed?

I've been trying to diagnose hangs and bad perf on my 2015 MBP running MacOS 12.2.1. One thing I noticed was various md* processes running and taking up a lot of CPU, e.g. mds, mdworker, ...
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How do I fix hung indexing of Messages?

I've always assumed that all of the indexing on a Mac is done via Spotlight. But when I hit ⌘-Space and start typing, the "indexing" bar does not appear at this point. mdutil -s / shows ...
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The action “Find Finder Items” encountered an error: “Unable to search with Spotlight.”

EDIT: Ok I give up using Automator actions, probably it has something to do with my external drive being ExFat not indexed or something. If anyone has an AppleScript code or whatever workaround to ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Is there any search tools like "everything" on MacOS?

Now I want to search a file exists or not on my mac, when I am using Windows, I can using the everything tool that searching any files less than 50ms on the disk, I was wonder if there is any tool ...
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**Spotlight Search** does not see all the apps

It seems that recently my Spotlight indexing is broken. I noticed that it does not see/offer R and some other apps too. It does give me RStudio (and even R Kelly 😱 ). I need constantly to do the ...
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Spotlight Autocomplete Suggesting the Wrong App

I recently downloaded GoodNotes and now whenever I try to open Notes via Spotlight, I accidentally open GoodNotes because GoodNotes is strangely the first result when I type "notes"! (A ...
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2 votes
0 answers
235 views

Stop Spotlight from indexing Time Machine volume

The following processes are running more or less constantly and are starting again after each Time Machine backup: mds mds_stores mdworker_shared Terminal command mdutil -s -v /Volumes/Backup ...
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Why are foreign items appearing in my Spotlight?

I accidentally put in @_ in my search bar in my iPhone Spotlight and all kinds of strangers' accounts appeared. All mostly specifically from Ukraine, about Ukraine, Ukraine news, and also about ...
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1 answer
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How to bind Cmd+Space to Launchpad

I'd like to bind Cmd+Space to open Launchpad because I can't remove web suggestions from Spotlight. In Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts, I've unchecked the box next to the Spotlight shortcut ...
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Does Dropbox automatically add itself to the Spotlight privacy list?

I have recently got a new mac (macOS 12.2) and configured it manually, without importing my data from my old one. One of the apps I've installed on the new mac is Dropbox. Recently I noticed that ...
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1 answer
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Finder search shows no Email results - Spotlight preview does

Very strange ... I setup a new MBP 2020 Intel coming from an old MBP 2010 with High Sierra. I transferred everything to the new system, all now on 12.2, and everything is running - except one problem ...
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How to open new instance of applications from spotlight every time on Mac m1 (Big Sur & above)

Instead of directing to the application, how to make spotlight open a new instance/window of the application. Tried flashlight solution but it won't work for recent Mac OS Versions.
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3 votes
1 answer
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MacBook Air update to Big Sur broke my Spotlight search

I have been experiencing multiple issues since upgrading to Big Sur. My zsh terminal takes upto 30s to open (never happened before) My Firefox tabs crash when I wake my Mac from sleep Spotlight ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Is store.db an SQL database?

Is /.Spotlight-V100/Store-V2/${STORE_UUID}/store.db an SQL database that can be queried with a normal SQL client? The format is here: https://github.com/libyal/dtformats/blob/main/documentation/Apple%...
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162 views

Spotlight integration with Google Drive for Desktop?

With previous versions of the Google Drive app for Mac (Google Drive, Drive File Stream) it was possible to search the filenames using Spotlight. After installing the current Google Drive for Desktop, ...
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1 vote
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Spotlight cannot find any files. How can I fix this? Update: Problem persists after disk-wiping and fresh-reinstalling macOS

tl;dr (10 January 2022): Spotlight can no longer find any files except applications. It's been using a lot of %CPU for days to reindex but has not made any progress. tl;dr (2 March 2022): To my horror,...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Can Finder / Spotlight search for files by a specific time of day?

I have thousands of JPG images from a GoPro timelapse recorded in 5 minute increments throughout the day. I need to grab just the 12PM images, but i have to scroll down so far to get to the next file. ...
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Mac Not Sleeping In Clamshell "PreventUserIdleSystemSleep"

Whenever I put my mac in clamshell mode, it doesn't sleep. I've tried resetting: Reset NVRAM or PRAM Prevent Sleep Tab on Activity Monitor Removed Automatic Log in Applications & Extensions ...
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2 answers
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Spotlight doesn't index network drives on macOS Monterey

It looks like the indexing of network drives in Monterey is not working properly. All Search Results categories are checked in Spotlight settings and nothing is in the Privacy exclusion list. My ...
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2 votes
1 answer
167 views

How do I get mdfind to look in /opt?

mdfind does not seem to find files in /opt. e.g. $ mdfind -onlyin /opt -name Dockerfile $ find produces the expected result $ find /opt -name Dockerfile /opt/homebrew/Dockerfile /opt/homebrew/Cellar/...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Edit Smart Folder savedSearch manually for command line

I have a set of Smart Folders in High Sierra that index documents on a USB hard drive. The Smart Folders are saved on the USB drive and they work. I have moved the whole content including therefore ...
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Can I stop revisiond from accessing my external drive?

I have an external RAID drive and its kind of noisy when in use. Many mornings it makes a lot of noise because something is accessing it. At first I thought it was spotlight so I configured spotlight ...
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How to make spotlight more characters wider?

How can I make the spotlight search box wider so that more of the text I type into it will be visible at once?
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Unexpected Look Up and Dictionary popping up when I try to click buttons; System Preferences won't open

I'm trying to use my wife's 2020 MacBook runing Monterey and I feel like it's suddenly playing tricks on me and I can't figure out how to make it behave properly. When I click on a particular button ...
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2 votes
2 answers
224 views

Spotlight search useless for basic core apps

Why is the Spotlight search index not finding what seems to me to be the most obvious result for a core app? I search for the Calendar and it gives me a bunch of useless results. I did a fresh OS ...
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4 votes
1 answer
466 views

How do mdfind and mdls derive what metadata a file has and where is it stored?

The man page of mdfind says the following: The mdfind command consults the central metadata store and returns a list of files that match the given metadata query. The query can be a string or a query ...
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Open custom URL from spotlight

I'm trying to build an automation where I could type in Spotlight something like "open 234" and it will open a web browser to "https://myweb.com/234". Is this possible in to do ...
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1 vote
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Show Kindle books in iPhone spotlight search

Is it possible to search for specific Kindle books in iPhone spotlight search. For example say I have To Kill a Mockingbird ebook in Kindle. Can I search for ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ in spotlight ...
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