Disable Indexing but still able to use Spotlight?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by ayeying, Feb 8, 2010.

  1. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Yay Area, CA
    #1
    So in Windows, if you were to disable Windows Indexing for search (but leave search on), you'll still be able to search for files, just at a extremely slower rate because theres no index available. Having an SSD, this is faster and I like that feature but in OSX, I can't figure out if there's anything to disable indexing but still have spotlight be able to find/search for files.

    It's not being done out of paranoia or such, but for some reason, MDS always goes off whenever the system is started, any minor file is changed and such, it's actually being a huge drain on system resources. The MDS runs for about 10 minutes each time, taking up 30-70% cpu usually and i really want to disable it but still have spotlight searching available.

    Can this be done? or is something that only windows' would have?
     
  2. r0k macrumors 68040

    r0k

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    #2
    I found a site that might help here. There is also a program called spotless that you can purchase (for around 10 bucks if I remember correctly) to turn spotlight indexing on and off. I prefer to keep my hands off spotlight. I never reboot except when system update forces me. I then walk away and do something else and usually when I return, spotlight is finished indexing.

    I find spotlight to be a welcome replacement for the awkward start menu approach that windows uses and I don't want to do anything to break (or impede the performance of) one of my favorite aspects of OS X.
     
  3. arogge macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #3
    I have the same problem with Spotlight. I only want OS X to do basic file searches, not indexing. The problem is that every time I plug in my external hard drive, OS X starts the drive clicking away incessantly. I finally figured out how to see what it was doing, and it was Spotlight trying to index a drive that it claimed would take about 20 hours to finish. Ejecting the drive takes much longer, because I have to wait for Spotlight to slow down and stop hogging the drive. The only way to stop it was to turn on the Privacy option to block Spotlight from searching that hard drive, but now I'm locked out of doing a search at all.

    It's too complicated! :mad:
     
  4. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    Solon, OH
    #4
    Totally with you there. I wish there was a way to SELECTIVELY use Spotlight. Say, enable it for my internal drive(s) but disable it for everything else, and use the older find and/or locate UNIX commands for searching - just with a GUI frontend ;)
     
  5. P Mentior macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    Location:
    Ohio
    #5
    Couldn't you just prevent Spotlight from indexing you external drives under the privacy tab in Spotlight's settings?
     

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  6. arogge macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #6
    That's what I tried doing, but Find is locked out if Spotlight is told not to index the drive. There's no more simple Find function available.
     
  7. P Mentior macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2008
    Location:
    Ohio
    #7
    Sorry, That was more of a solution for wrldwzrd89 who just wanted to disable Spotlight for external drives altogether.
     

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