Spotlight only shows files I've opened

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Arkangil, Aug 20, 2009.

  1. Arkangil macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    #1
    So I am a recent convert from PC to Mac. I run a business, so with me I brought over a series of Word and Excel files. Specifically, I use Word templates created from Avery templates to print labels and bar codes for my products.

    I do have Word on my Mac. It seems that when I try to use spotlight to find a particular Word document, only those that I have already opened at least once show up. It does not find all that match the criteria of the search.

    Is this something others have encountered? Is the only way to get spotlight to function the way I'd like is to open all of the files at least once? There are a lot of them!

    It's frustrating learning a new OS when I could do anything I needed on Windows, but I am a happy convert so far! A fix for this would make me much more so.

    Thanks for all the help!
     
  2. uaecasher macrumors 65816

    uaecasher

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2009
    Location:
    Stillwater, OK
    #2
    check this video:

    http://mozymac.com/forums/f6/how-disable-spotlight-30/

    this one will show you how to disable spotlight, just reverse the method to make sure spotlight is indexing everything.

    or if you want disable it then reenable it. This will make it reindex your computer, although i never had this problem. Spotlight finds anything i have even if it was in external HD and never opened it. It might take time for new doc.

    Since your new mac user, 1st welcome to mac community :D

    here are bunch of video tutorials to get you started:

    forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=744582
     
  3. Arkangil thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    #3
    That's great. I'll check these out when I get home tonight. No use watching them at work where I can't try them out anyway!

    Much appreciated.

    For the record, I did use the forums search first!
     
  4. uaecasher macrumors 65816

    uaecasher

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2009
    Location:
    Stillwater, OK
    #4
    It's ok :D, even if you didn't I'm happy to help any mac user.

    Enjoy
     
  5. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #5
    I have the impression that spotlight gives preference to things that you have recently opened. Whatever you are looking for _should_ be there under "Show All" (first item in the spotlight menu), if it is not directly in the Spotlight menu.

    If "a lot of files" is just hundred or so: In the Finder, select them all, "Open" in the File menu, don't panic when Word opens one document after the other, then Quit Word when they are all opened.
     
  6. Arkangil thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    #6
    Even when I try the show all, they are not there. But when I manually open one, and then do a spotlight search for it in the future, it is there. It's strange. I wonder if it's just something about how I brought them over from PC via an external drive. I dunno. As I said, I'm too new to be able to troubleshoot.

    Thanks for all teh suggestions. I will watch the movies, and then maybe just open all. I'd hate to have to do this with all my Word, Excel, plain text, etc. documents, but maybe that is the best way.

    *in theory* any new document I create on the Mac should have been "opened once" and there for work. I have not tested this yet.

    Thanks again!
     
  7. revs macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    Worcestershire
    #7
    The spotlight database could just have gone a bit screwy. If you disable spotlight and re-enable it I believe it will re-build the database and all should be fine.
     
  8. Arkangil thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
  9. uaecasher macrumors 65816

    uaecasher

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2009
    Location:
    Stillwater, OK
    #9
    Tell us what happened :D
     
  10. Arkangil thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    #10
    The video didn't work. I found some other sites that talk about editing plist files, or something, but I haven't done enough Mac system research to know what a plist file is. I don't want to mess around with it!
     

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