How to set Spotlight to search the library folder

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Diatribe, Feb 10, 2008.

  1. Diatribe macrumors 601


    Jan 8, 2004
    Back in the motherland
    Does anyone know how to set Spotlight so it searches the library folder by default? It drives me nuts that it doesn't and that I have to go into the folder, search and then select the library.
    Is there any easier way to include the library folder into the Spotlight searches?
  2. mediaguru macrumors regular

    Nov 4, 2006
    The middle of BentFork, TN
    There's some good information on this situation in this thread. Apparently there have been some changes in Leopard.
  3. Diatribe thread starter macrumors 601


    Jan 8, 2004
    Back in the motherland
    Ah, thanks a lot. Glad to know I am not the only one. Too bad there isn't a solution.
  4. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus


    Jan 15, 2006
    The Kop
    Tell me about it, I literally spent ages trying to find some reference somewhere where it specifically ignores the Library files but alas I couldn't.

    Hopes 10.5.2 has fixed this and that no one has noticed so far.

    If not hope 10.5.3 sorts it out.

    At times like this I always go and fill in feedback just so they know what people feel.
  5. fnabdog macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2011

    Erm...I don't think so. You spent 'ages' only in a metaphorical sense and not at all in the literal sense; unless of course you really did spend many thousands of years. Now that would literally be an age.

    Yours, in pure pedantry,


    PS -Christ - this is 3 years old and I'm commenting - how profoundly sad.
  6. mattstrange macrumors newbie


    Apr 7, 2011
    Mansfield, PA
    Yeah, but it's a good comment.

    BTW, the problem still exists as of 10.6.7.
  7. Spikestrip macrumors member


    Apr 1, 2011
    I'm not sure I'd call the OS preventing us (average users, aka, the source of the problem) from searching the Library folder a problem. Most of us don't belong in there. I'd like to have a command to give it to make it search library folders, but I don't see that as a shortcoming.

  8. ebobster, Apr 12, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2011

    ebobster macrumors newbie

    Apr 12, 2011
    simple solution to augment list of spotlight directories

    There's at least one solution to enable directories that Snow Leopard automatically excludes from the spotlight. I say at least one because I believe that you can actually create custom database indexes with apps such as quicksilver, path finder, total finder, etc. and then create your own hot key trigger that launches the apps built-in finder. I use quicksilver all the time, but I have never liked it's spotlight search design/interface.

    Anyway, if you just want to be able to access the folder /Users/[user]/Library then simply create aliases for the top level directory and all its subfolders.

    Spotlight's default index includes 'Folders' so they will be automatically added the next time it rebuilds its index. I would recommend, however, moving the folders to a different location and also changing the icon of both the library alias folder and all its subfolders folders so that it can easily be identified when the spotlight window appears.

    One other thing:

    The /Systems/Library folder cannot have an alias made of both itself and its contents, so I think you'd have to fudge around with it's ownership and/or it's permissions by changing adding another user (yourself) to have custom access as the super user. But for most people the contents of the systems' library folders is best left unaltered.
  9. musselrock macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2012
    Came looking for info, but will leave some instead

    Spotlight can search entire computer including libraries if you form your search term in a window's search box like so:

    to find Archive Utility:


    or, if the filename has spaces:

    filename:"archive utility"

    kind:aperture library

    Works also.

    Anyone have more?


Share This Page