Do you think Spotlight will really work?

sigamy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Mar 7, 2003
1,300
2
NJ USA
Is Spotlight going to be the next File Vault? I'm not sure how well it is working now but right after Panther's release there were tons of issues with File Vault. Most of the resoultions boiled down to simply turning it off.

I'm wondering how well Spotlight will work? I've just searched a 2,000 page PDF inside Acrobat on my windows machine. It took over 10 minutes. How in the world is Spotlight going to search my entire hard drive? I guess everything will be indexed when I'm sleeping? But what happens when I change a few documents thru the day--there has to be incremental indexing, right?

I just can't see Apple pulling this off. The technology isn't ready yet.
 

jsw

Moderator emeritus
Mar 16, 2004
22,819
41
Andover, MA
Spotlight has already proven itself effective in indexing over 500GB of files (690GB of disk total) on my dual-2.0 PM G5 and connected external drives. It did take some serious time to finish the initial index, but it is lightning fast once done. Truly amazing. And this is months prior to the public release. And yes, it does incremental indexing.
 

maxterpiece

macrumors 6502a
Mar 5, 2003
729
0
jsw said:
Spotlight has already proven itself effective in indexing over 500GB of files (690GB of disk total) on my dual-2.0 PM G5 and connected external drives. It did take some serious time to finish the initial index, but it is lightning fast once done. Truly amazing. And this is months prior to the public release. And yes, it does incremental indexing.
That's hot!

It's funny... right now itunes searches are instantaneous, but you search a 500 song library in windows media player and it takes a solid 5 seconds on an avg machine. It's basically a matter of taking hte time to implement the tech I guess.
 

jsw

Moderator emeritus
Mar 16, 2004
22,819
41
Andover, MA
maxterpiece said:
That's hot!

It's funny... right now itunes searches are instantaneous, but you search a 500 song library in windows media player and it takes a solid 5 seconds on an avg machine. It's basically a matter of taking hte time to implement the tech I guess.
Yes, it's vastly better to incorporate searching into the OS itself as a dynamic thing than it is to do it on-the-fly. Spotlight isn't instantaneous, but it sure feels that way. My favorite Tiger feature so far.
 

BornAgainMac

macrumors 603
Feb 4, 2004
6,352
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Florida Resident
In defense for File Vault, it really is best used with a separate user account for a limited set of files that you don't want people to see like your financial information. Don't use it to secure porn pics, videos, or your iTunes library.

I don't use File Vault but if I did, it would just be for financial information, passwords, sensitive company information.

After I install Tiger I'll just kick off the indexing feature and let it run for a couple of days if necessary. I can see the only problem of it would be if you searched for some files with someone looking at your screen and it brings up documents that you don't want people to see on your machine.
 

edesignuk

Moderator emeritus
Mar 25, 2002
19,077
1
London, England
BornAgainMac said:
I can see the only problem of it would be if you searched for some files with someone looking at your screen and it brings up documents that you don't want people to see on your machine.
You can specify directories that you don't want indexed ;)
 

BigDogg

macrumors member
Feb 21, 2005
75
0
TN
I think spotlight will be very fast. In the demo that Steve uses the spotlight program I do not recall it being slow at all, but of course this was probably on a supped up PM. :rolleyes:
 

dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
15,725
447
The Centennial State
maxterpiece said:
That's hot!

It's funny... right now itunes searches are instantaneous, but you search a 500 song library in windows media player and it takes a solid 5 seconds on an avg machine. It's basically a matter of taking hte time to implement the tech I guess.
Reminds me of doing a "Find In Files..." on Windows. Using the OS solution it's painfully slow. But when I do it from within TextPad, it's pretty damn fast! Seems like the TextPad coders used some kind of "grep" approach, whereas the Windows OS coders opted for the "anti-grep"...
 

GFLPraxis

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,091
404
sigamy said:
I just can't see Apple pulling this off. The technology isn't ready yet.
On the contrary, after Apple started working on Spotlight (back in 2000) several copycats emerged.

Microsoft will have WinFS in Longhorn, and Google ALREADY released a Spotlight-like tool for Windows that lets you search through your entire HD in a split second.
 

jaw04005

macrumors 601
Aug 19, 2003
4,369
15
AR
How long is going to take to index my hard drive? I forced an index on my iMac because finding any file became incredibly slow. After 2 days of non-stop indexing, I had to stop due to having to use the iMac for something else.

Is Spotlight going to take 2+ days to index a 80GB drive too? I hope not.
 

SteveC

macrumors 6502
Jul 7, 2003
438
0
sigamy said:
I'm wondering how well Spotlight will work? I've just searched a 2,000 page PDF inside Acrobat on my windows machine. It took over 10 minutes. How in the world is Spotlight going to search my entire hard drive? I guess everything will be indexed when I'm sleeping? But what happens when I change a few documents thru the day--there has to be incremental indexing, right?

I just can't see Apple pulling this off. The technology isn't ready yet.
Of course Spotlight is going to work. It already DOES. It IS working. NOW. TODAY. This very minute. This instant. It WORKS.

Using Windows as the basis of your theory that Apple's "technology isn't ready yet"? *laughs until throat is sore*

Here's the problem with that:

Mac OS X is NOT Windows! (!!!!!) and a few more !!!!!!!s

Windows is practically junk in many instances for many uses.

Mas OS X Rules.

There's your answer on "why" and "how" it works so well. :p

Playfully stated of course... ;)
 

IDANNY

macrumors 6502a
Dec 26, 2003
776
0
Las vegas
sigamy said:
Is Spotlight going to be the next File Vault? I'm not sure how well it is working now but right after Panther's release there were tons of issues with File Vault. Most of the resoultions boiled down to simply turning it off.

I'm wondering how well Spotlight will work? I've just searched a 2,000 page PDF inside Acrobat on my windows machine. It took over 10 minutes. How in the world is Spotlight going to search my entire hard drive? I guess everything will be indexed when I'm sleeping? But what happens when I change a few documents thru the day--there has to be incremental indexing, right?

I just can't see Apple pulling this off. The technology isn't ready yet.
The first thought that I had was but steve said. I think that it will work well. Apple probably wont release tiger until spotlight is somewhat ready.
 

SteveC

macrumors 6502
Jul 7, 2003
438
0
IDANNY said:
The first thought that I had was but steve said. I think that it will work well. Apple probably wont release tiger until spotlight is somewhat ready.
Oooo kudos to me. I know I really provided some valuable insight with my post. ;)

Edit: I don't have the name of Apple's CEO for nothing. LOL Just playing/kidding there... :D
 

killergator

macrumors newbie
Oct 7, 2003
8
0
orlando
Spotlight works great

I have 500 gigs of hard drive space to index . It took a while for the space to be indexed, but now its quicker than greased owl poot. It works flat out. Dashboard would be my guess as the next file vault unless they get some better apps in it. Right now its a glorified apple menu.
 

jaw04005

macrumors 601
Aug 19, 2003
4,369
15
AR
killergator said:
I have 500 gigs of hard drive space to index . It took a while for the space to be indexed, but now its quicker than greased owl poot. It works flat out. Dashboard would be my guess as the next file vault unless they get some better apps in it. Right now its a glorified apple menu.
How long did it take to index?
 

SteveC

macrumors 6502
Jul 7, 2003
438
0
killergator said:
I have 500 gigs of hard drive space to index . It took a while for the space to be indexed, but now its quicker than greased owl poot. It works flat out. Dashboard would be my guess as the next file vault unless they get some better apps in it. Right now its a glorified apple menu.
User-created apps should solve that big time.
 

andrewm

macrumors regular
Apr 2, 2004
132
3
Los Angeles, CA
Enter the Dashboard

SteveC said:
User-created apps should solve that big time.
I have a feeling that this could easily prove a good combination/replacement for Sherlock. Sherlock's nice in some regards; the third-party Watson (link, someone) is also highly-respected by many. Apple's Dashboard preview page for Tiger, however, indicates two things: single-key availability and their 'widgets' (things such as dictionary/thesaurus, stocks, weather, telephone directories, airline tickets, et cetera). If one likens widgets to Sherlock channels, then news RSS feeds can be handled by their new Safari (also linked-to from that page).

I personally find it tiresome to press a key to bring up a dictionary, weather, or Stickies, despite that I do not find such tools irreplaceable. Granted that I prefer the Oxford English Dictionary (which I doubt will be included), but this is far better than naught, and (provided decent graphics are allowed-for) one might easily envision the eventual removal of aging Sherlock from the system. My haypenny.
 

bennetsaysargh

macrumors 68020
Jan 20, 2003
2,367
0
New York
well, dashboard is going to be good because it's going to be limitless. you have no idea how many times i need to convert things, or do something quickly in calculator, and the calculator app takes a few seconds to load on my aging pb.
 

BornAgainMac

macrumors 603
Feb 4, 2004
6,352
3,214
Florida Resident
killergator said:
I have 500 gigs of hard drive space to index . It took a while for the space to be indexed, but now its quicker than greased owl poot. It works flat out. Dashboard would be my guess as the next file vault unless they get some better apps in it. Right now its a glorified apple menu.
I bet Quicktime files will index quick since it will just look at the Metadata. Index speeds will be dependent on the type of files (PDF vs simple JPEGs) and the number of files. The more complex files, the longer the search.
500 gigs probably would index quick if you had 10 huge Quicktime DV files.

I hope it handles file & email deletions because the google desktop index search didn't do very well on my Windows box at work. It finds deleted links or files that were just moved to another location. If Apple handles this well then I'll be happy.
 

rendezvouscp

macrumors 68000
Aug 20, 2003
1,526
0
Long Beach, California
Spotlight has been working well since Apple released the first copy of Tiger to the developers. The searching is incredibly fast, always up to date, and very thorough. Not only that, it's incredibly easy to use and customize. Spotlight is nothing short of spectacular.

Dashboard definitely won't be dying. It's very, very cool, very expandable, and very customizable. You know, I should be in the PR department, shouldn't I ;). It's pretty easy to write your own widgets if you know enough code to do what you want. It's very fast too, and lightweight.

These features in Tiger just work, like the Mac itself. I can't possibly explain how incredible Spotlight really is. It's like getting a whole new Mac ;).
-Chase
 

bubbamac

macrumors 6502
Dec 24, 2003
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0
I'm currently using Quicksilver, which I don't think I can do without anymore. I'm assuming that Spotlight is similar. Correct?
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
So if you have Office documents on your computer, will it search all the words in them, or just indexed words? How do the words get into the index? Ditto, I guess for pdfs? That is, if I download a PDF from the web that wasn't particularly designed for Spotlight or for desktop search, it will be searched as effectively in Spotlight as a file I create on my computer?

I seem to remember a while ago reading that Office would have to be upgraded to get Spotlight compatibility, but I don't see that on Apple's site anymore.
 

jsw

Moderator emeritus
Mar 16, 2004
22,819
41
Andover, MA
bubbamac said:
I'm currently using Quicksilver, which I don't think I can do without anymore. I'm assuming that Spotlight is similar. Correct?
If by similar, you mean "vastly faster and more complete", then yes. ;)