Spotlight, File Vault and privacy

Discussion in 'macOS' started by nagromme, Apr 25, 2005.

  1. nagromme macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    I understand that Spotlight uses ONE system-wide index--and that index (well, set of indices) tracks all the stuff belonging to ALL users. But it obeys permissions and simply doesn't show you other people's stuff in the results.

    Anyone know how this all works with File Vault? If your data is encrypted, then you don't want an unencrypted index TO that data, including your files' text contents!

    Spotlight could use a separate index files, stored within your encrypted account--but I'm guessing it doesn't, because if it was built that way then it would just have separate indices for ALL users, and supposedly it does not.

    So does Spotlight work with File Vault or not? And does it compromise your data protection if so?

    With Tiger now encrypting virtual memory, it seems like Apple must have solved this also in some way.

    Just wondering.
  2. sparkleytone macrumors 68020


    Oct 28, 2001
    Greensboro, NC
    As has been shown in another thread...each volume has its own Index. Your system probably keeps an "Index of Indeces" as well as its own Volume index, but there would be no access to the actual data if the Volume isn't mounted. As you probably know, FileVault makes your home directory into an image that is mounted. I'm pretty sure your files are safe.
  3. nagromme thread starter macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    If your home folder is considered the same as any other "volume" then that makes sense.

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