9 Replies Latest reply: Aug 10, 2012 7:42 PM by MurrayMcF
MurrayMcF Level 1 (0 points)

Hi, I hope someone can help me out here.


I can't get Finder search to produce any results as it would in the previous version of OSX.


Here's a video; http://screencast.com/t/0TuHOLOLH


Your help would be much appreciated...this is very FRUSTRATING!




OS X Mountain Lion
  • mr.k99 Level 3 (640 points)

    Have you tried searching in spotlight (upper-right corner, looks like a magnifying glass)?

  • MurrayMcF Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for your suggestion but no it doesn't work either...looks like it's searching forever.



  • MacGunt Level 2 (415 points)

    I had this same problem before. It was maddening. Eventually I figured out that I had messed up the permissions somehow.


    Currently if I do a command + i on my downloads folder it shows the permissions as:

    me: read/write

    everyone: no access


    and the files inside downloads have the same as above but also:

    staff: read only


    So, assuming you have the same problem I had, what I would do is change the permissions of the downloads folder (in the "get info" window i.e. command + i) to have all 3 of these permissions and then click the gear at the bottom and "apply to enclosed items". Then go back and remove the "staff: read only" from the downloads folder and do not apply to enclosed items. Also do this for pictures, music etc. Do not to this from the top of the home folder as it mioght mess up your library.


    And because someone will inevitably ask, no a permissions repair would not accomplish this

  • mr.k99 Level 3 (640 points)

    It sounds like something may have gotten messed up while spotlight was indexing. Please refer to the article here

  • William Lloyd Level 7 (21,040 points)

    Well it looks like Spotlight is disabled.


    Go to System Preferences->Spotlight and look in the Privacy tab and see if your hard drive is in the list.


    If it's not, then you could try rebuilding the Spotlight index by dragging it there briefly, and then removing it.  You should see the magnifying glass strart "throbbing" in the menu bar.


    You could also type this from a terminal window:


    sudo mdutil -s /


    You'll need to enter your password.


    You should see this:



              Indexing enabled.


    If it says disabled, you could type this:


    sudo mdutil -i on /


    And that will turn it on and start re-indexing your boot drive.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 (192,265 points)

    If you have more than one user account, these instructions must be carried out as an administrator.


    Launch the Console 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 Console in the page that opens.


    Step 1


    Make sure the title of the Console window is All Messages. If it isn't, select All Messages from the SYSTEM LOG QUERIES menu on the left.


    Enter "mdworker" (without the quotes) in the Filter text field. Post the messages that appear in the Console window — the text, please, not a screenshot.


    If there are runs of repeated messages, post only one example of each. Do not post many repetitions of the same message.


    Some personal information, such as the names of your files, may be included — edit that out, too, but don’t remove the context.


    Step 2


    Do the same with the search string "mds".

  • William Lloyd Level 7 (21,040 points)

    I do not think this is a good idea.  It's not going to help this issue, and changing permissions on folders without knowing what you're doing could cause other issues down the road.


    The default permissions on ~/Downloads will not affect whether things show up in Spotlight in any way, shape, or form.

  • MacGunt Level 2 (415 points)

    I've had this issue before and that actually did fix the issue. Also, what possible problems could occur from changing permissions of user files? I told him not to do this at the top level of the home folder because that could cause problems.


    The thought of a competent user who was able to post a link to his own video of the problem accidentally adding the hard drive to the privacy list of spotlight is kind of funny, don't you think? Although you're right, reindexing may help......

  • MurrayMcF Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks so much William...this did the trick.