9 Replies Latest reply: Nov 28, 2012 11:53 PM by softwater
aplej Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

With a folder containing over 1,500 .tif files, searches are not dependable.  Some known items are not found with searches.  There used to be a desktop database that could be rebuilt.  I understand that is no longer the case.

 

Thanks in advance.


MacBook Pro (Retina, Mid 2012), OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2)
  • 1. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Tom in London Level 4 Level 4 (1,585 points)

    aplej wrote:

     

    searches are not dependable.  Some known items are not found with searches. 

    Yes - I too find that the inbuilt Search facility, which relies on using the Spotlight database, is OK for quick searches but for in-depth searching I prefer EasyFind, which really does look for everything and is totally reliable.

  • 2. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (118,475 points)

    Please give an example of a search that doesn't work as you expect.

  • 3. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,340 points)

    You can force a spotlight database rebuilt by adding your hard drive to the "Privacy" list in the Spotlight system preferences and then removing it. Try doing this to see if a new database gives better results.

  • 4. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Gerard Van Schip Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)

    Like Topher said you can force a re-index via the privacy trick. One note to add, it can only index folders you have ownership off. To make sure thats all working as should run Disk Utility "fix permision". I have found that often resolves many issues.

     

    Good luck

  • 5. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    softwater Level 5 Level 5 (5,370 points)

    I agree with Tom. Spotlight is not a particularly good search engine at the best of times, particularly if you want to find things that the OS doesn't want you to find.

     

    Use EasyFind, or learn how to use the 'Find' and 'Grep' commands in Terminal.

  • 6. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Gerard Van Schip Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)

    While Easyfind will do a live search on your files it's horribly slow when compared to an indexed search like spotlight. I would rather suggest keeping the Spotlight index healthy by using a maintenance utility like Deeper or OnyX that can routinly repair the index.

  • 7. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Tom in London Level 4 Level 4 (1,585 points)

    Gerard Van Schip wrote:

     

    While Easyfind will do a live search on your files it's horribly slow when compared to an indexed search like spotlight. I would rather suggest keeping the Spotlight index healthy by using a maintenance utility like Deeper or OnyX that can routinly repair the index.

    If by "horribly slow" you mean "a few seconds" then I would agree.

     

    I use EasyFind on a regular basis and have found it very quick. It isn't instantaneous like Spotlight but given the extra time needed to run maintenance utilities such as those suggested, overall Easyfind doesn't take any longer than Spotlight. With the added advantage that it will definitely find everything.

  • 8. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    Gerard Van Schip Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)

    My internal drive is 500gb and I have 2 external drives, each 2tb connected and when I did a search over all volumes it took 2 minutes to search. To me that is very slow. I'm not saying there is no use for something like Easyfind, I will certainly leave it in my Application folder for that time where spotlight is not finding something I know should be there.

  • 9. Re: Why does folder search fail to find known item?
    softwater Level 5 Level 5 (5,370 points)

    You're right Gerard, but the trick with EasyFind is to use its options to narrow the search. There are quite a few options down the left sidepanel that will exclude all sorts of unncessary files, and over on the right next to the search bar is a drop-down menu from which you can choose which volumes to search (or 'All' if you wish).

     

    Note that down the left sidepanel you have various options like using unix wildcards or phrases rather than just 'all words'.

     

    Despite its name, EasyFind takes a bit of practice to get used to in order to use it effectively. As you've found, a global search without limiting any of the parameters can take a couple of minutes. However, in most cases you don't need that much power - users usually know something about the file (be it file type, string in the name, or vague idea of its location) that make a global search rarely necessary.

     

    If you practice a bit with the options, you'll soon find it is a very powerful tool. Most importantly, it will - unlike Spotlight - literally find everything on your system that matches the search critieria.