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can't index files

1207 Views 29 Replies Latest reply: Feb 4, 2013 10:54 PM by Topher Kessler RSS
  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,800 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 8:50 AM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    My question was whether you could modify the Spotlight privacy settings in safe mode.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,800 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 9:34 AM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    Please read this whole message before doing anything.
      
    This procedure is a diagnostic test. It won’t solve your problem. Don’t be disappointed when you find that nothing has changed after you complete it.
       
    Third-party system modifications are a common cause of usability problems. By a “system modification,” I mean software that affects the operation of other software — potentially for the worse. The following procedure will help identify which such modifications you've installed. Don’t be alarmed by the complexity of these instructions — they’re easy to carry out and won’t change anything on your Mac.

     

    These steps are to be taken while booted in “normal” mode, not in safe mode. If you’re now running in safe mode, reboot as usual before continuing.

     

    Below are instructions to enter some UNIX shell commands. The commands are harmless, but they must be entered exactly as given in order to work. If you have doubts about the safety of the procedure suggested here, search this site for other discussions in which it’s been followed without any report of ill effects.

     

    Some of the commands will line-wrap or scroll in your browser, but each one is really just a single line, all of which must be selected. You can accomplish this easily by triple-clicking anywhere in the line. The whole line will highlight, and you can then either copy or drag it. The headings “Step 1” and so on are not part of the commands.

     

    Note: If you have more than one user account, Step 2 must be taken as an administrator. Ordinarily that would be the user created automatically when you booted the system for the first time. The other steps should be taken as the user who has the problem, if different. Most personal Macs have only one user, and in that case this paragraph doesn’t apply.

     

    Launch the Terminal application in any of the following ways:

     

    ☞ Enter the first few letters of its name into a Spotlight search. Select it in the results (it should be at the top.)

     

    ☞ In the Finder, select Go ▹ Utilities from the menu bar, or press the key combination shift-command-U. The application is in the folder that opens.

     

    ☞ Open LaunchPad. Click Utilities, then Terminal in the icon grid.

     

    When you launch Terminal, a text window will open with a line already in it, ending either in a dollar sign (“$”) or a percent sign (“%”). If you get the percent sign, enter “sh” and press return. You should then get a new line ending in a dollar sign.

     

    Step 1

     

    Triple-click the line of text below to select it:
    kextstat -kl | awk '!/com\.apple/{printf "%s %s\n", $6, $7}'
     
    Copy (command-C) the selected text to the Clipboard. Then click anywhere in the Terminal window and paste (command-V). Post the lines of output (if any) that appear below what you just entered. You can do that by copy-and-paste as well. Omit the final line ending in “$”. No typing is involved in this step.
        
    Step 2

     

    Repeat with this line:
    sudo launchctl list | sed 1d | awk '!/0x|com\.(apple|openssh|vix)|edu\.mit|org\.(amavis|apache|cups|isc|ntp|postfix|x)/{print $3}'
     
    This time you'll be prompted for your login password, which you do have to type. It won't be displayed when you type it. Type it carefully and then press return. You may get a one-time warning not to screw up. You don't need to post the warning. If you see a message that your username "is not in the sudoers file," then you're not logged in as an administrator.

     

    Note: If you don’t have a login password, you’ll need to set one before taking this step. If that’s not possible, skip to the next step.

     

    Step 3
    launchctl list | sed 1d | awk '!/0x|com\.apple|edu\.mit|org\.(x|openbsd)/{print $3}'
     
    Step 4
    ls -1A /e*/mach* {,/}L*/{Ad,Compon,Ex,Fram,In,Keyb,La,Mail/Bu,P*P,Priv,Qu,Scripti,Servi,Spo,Sta}* L*/Fonts 2> /dev/null
      
    Important: If you formerly synchronized with a MobileMe account, your me.com email address may appear in the output of the above command. If so, anonymize it before posting.

     

    Step 5
    osascript -e 'tell application "System Events" to get name of every login item' 2> /dev/null
     
    Remember, steps 1-5 are all copy-and-paste — no typing, except your password. Also remember to post the output.

     

    You can then quit Terminal.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,800 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 10:49 AM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    Please read this whole message carefully, especially the warnings, before doing anything.

    1. The changes to your configuration suggested here should be considered provisional; they may not solve your problem, or they may remove functionality that you find useful. If a third-party system modification that you want to keep is causing the problem, seek help from its developer.

    2. WARNING: Back up all data now if you haven’t already done so. Before proceeding, you must be sure you can restore your system to its present state, even if it becomes unbootable. If you’re not sure you can do that, STOP — DON’T CHANGE ANYTHING. If you’re dissatisfied with the results of the procedure suggested below, restore from your backup. I will not be responsible for the consequences, and I will not be able to help, if you ignore this warning.

    3. You should either remove or update the following system modification(s), if an update is available from the developer:

    Parallels

    and definitely remove at least the following:

    AirParrot

    AirServer

    Attachment Tamer

    Nalpeiron ProTec

    NexDef

    SIMBL

    Soundflower

    Splashtop

    4. Whatever you remove must be removed completely, and (unless otherwise specified in this message) the only way to do that is to use the uninstallation tool, if any, provided by the third-party developers, or to follow their instructions. If the software has been incompletely removed, you may have to re-download or even reinstall it in order to finish the job. I can't be more specific, because I don't install such things myself. Please do your own research.

    Here are some general guidelines to get you started. Suppose you want to remove something called “BrickYourMac.” First, consult the product's Help menu, if there is one, for instructions. Finding none there, look on the developer's website, say www.brickyourmac.com. (That may not be the actual name of the site; if necessary, search the web for the product name.) If you don’t find anything on the website or in your search, email the developer. While you're waiting for a response, download BrickYourMac.dmg and open it. There may be an application in there such as “Uninstall BrickYourMac.” If not, open “BrickYourMac.pkg” and look for an Uninstall button.

    Again, please don't ask me to do this research for you. You can do it better than I can, because I haven't installed the product and I may not even know what it is.

    If you can’t remove software in any other way, you’ll have to erase your boot volume and perform a clean reinstallation of OS X. Never install any third-party software unless you're sure you know how to uninstall it; otherwise you may create problems that are very hard to solve.

    WARNING: Trying to remove complex system modifications by hunting for files by name often will not work and may make the problem worse. The same goes for "utilities" that purport to remove software.

    5. I recommend that you never reinstall the modifications marked with a dagger (†) above, if any. If your problem is resolved after uninstalling all the above modifications and rebooting, but you still want to use some of those not marked with a dagger, you can experiment with putting them back, one at a time, testing carefully after each step. Keep in mind that system modifications may be incompatible with each other or with future OS X updates, so it may not be clear which one is at fault.

    6. If you still have problems after making the suggested changes and rebooting, post again. Remember: if you don’t like the results of this procedure, you can undo it by restoring from the last backup you made before you started.

    Uninstall SIMBL as follows. Back up all data before making any changes.

    Select

    Go Go to Folder

    from the Finder menu bar, then enter the following text in the box that opens:

    /Library

    A folder will open. From that folder, delete the items listed below (some may be absent.) You may be prompted for your administrator login password.

     

    • Application Support/SIMBL
    • InputManagers/SIMBL.bundle
    • LaunchAgents/net.culater.SIMBL.Agent.plist
    • ScriptingAdditions/SIMBL.osax

     

    Log out and log back in.

     

    Make sure you never reinstall SIMBL. It’s likely to come bundled with another third-party system modfication that depends on it. If you want trouble-free computing, avoid software that makes miraculous changes to other software, especially built-in applications. The only real exception to that rule is Safari extensions, which are mostly safe, and are easy to get rid of when they don’t work. SIMBL and its dependents are not Safari extensions.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,800 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 11:37 AM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    Only by examining the installers of all the modifications.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,800 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 10:16 PM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    I'm running ML server, and Spotlight works fine for me.

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,305 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 10:43 PM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    Try checking for and manually resetting the drive's spotlight index. To do this, open the Terminal utility and run the following command to check for the index:

     

    ls -la / | grep Spotlight
    

     

    The output of this command should look like the following:

     

    drwx------    5 root      admin      170 May  8  2012 .Spotlight-V100
    

     

    Even if this shows the spotlight index is present, you can try manually removing and resetting it by running the following commands:

     

    sudo mdutil -E -i off /
    

     

    After running this command, run the following command to delete the Spotlight store directories (be absolutely sure there are no spaces between the slash and the ".Spotlight" text before executing this command):

     

    sudo rm -rf /.Spotlight
    

     

    Finally, re-enable spotlight by running the following command:

     

    sudo mdutil -E -i on /
    

     

    With this command run, check the spotlight menu to see if you can see an indication of the system building the index (ie, a progress bar). This may take up to a few hours to complete, but afterwards see if Spotlight works and if All My Files and other search search options properly show files.

    MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), 17", 2.5GHz i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD
  • Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,305 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 4, 2013 10:54 PM (in response to stevefromgladstone)

    Sure thing! Glad it wasnt a deeper issue.

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