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Question: Keyword search fails to return results in Photos

I want to search in Photos for those photos with a particular keyword. No matter which keyword I choose I get zero results from that keyword. E.g. I have dozens of photos with the keyword "Food". I type Food into the search box and I get ZERO results with that keyword. So one by one I try typing a keyword into the search box. Not one keyword returns a result. What gives?

I've got a mid 2011 iMac. I recently upgraded to High Sierra (10.13.3). Sorry, I can't say if this problem existed before the upgrade or not. I've got more that 21,000 photos in Photos. I do NOT store my photos in the cloud; they are on the iMac.

I'd appreciate some help on this one.

Thanks!

iMac (27-inch Mid 2011), iOS 11.0.3

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Feb 28, 2018 8:30 AM in response to Kloochman In response to Kloochman

I'm just hoping someone has experienced the same thing and that there is a fix for it.

Several users reported, that the search does not find all photos with the search keyword after the High Sierra upgrade. There seems to be no known fix other than using a smart album for the keyword search for the time being. I am keeping a separate smart album with a smart rule "keyword is" just for searches.


To search for keywords in the favorite section of the Keyword manager, the Filter "Showing" is giving more reliable results than searching for the keyword directly:


I am frequently using the "Showing" filter to select the photos with keywords in the current view, for example all photos with the keyword "Bird" or "Bear".

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Feb 27, 2018 5:03 PM in response to Kloochman In response to Kloochman

Update: Keywords added now to photos are findable with the search, so it seems not to be a problem with the search process but rather with the photo metadata. Only a newly added keyword is visible to the search. Please do not tell me I have to go through 21,000 photos and duplicate/replace all the keywords.

Feb 27, 2018 5:03 PM

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Feb 28, 2018 2:54 AM in response to Kloochman In response to Kloochman

Do your keywords contain upper and lowercase letters? Is your Photos Library on an external drive, perhaps with a case-sensitive file system format?


Have you checked in the Keywords Manager in Edit mode, if there are duplicate keywords?

Launch the Keywords manager with ⌘K and click "Edit" at the bottom of the panel. You will see a sorted list of Keywords.

Feb 28, 2018 2:54 AM

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Feb 28, 2018 8:18 AM in response to léonie In response to léonie

Hi Leonie,

I frequently make use of the Keywords Manager, so no problems there. i.e. no duplicates, etc. Upper and lower case were not an issue. As I said the photos reside on my iMac, not in the cloud nor on an external drive.

To be clear, for each photo that has them the keywords appear in the information panel. I just can't use the search to find photos with those keywords.

I'm pretty sure this is a bug that occurred when I upgraded to High Sierra. I'm just hoping someone has experienced the same thing and that there is a fix for it.

Feb 28, 2018 8:18 AM

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Question marked as Helpful

Feb 28, 2018 8:30 AM in response to Kloochman In response to Kloochman

I'm just hoping someone has experienced the same thing and that there is a fix for it.

Several users reported, that the search does not find all photos with the search keyword after the High Sierra upgrade. There seems to be no known fix other than using a smart album for the keyword search for the time being. I am keeping a separate smart album with a smart rule "keyword is" just for searches.


To search for keywords in the favorite section of the Keyword manager, the Filter "Showing" is giving more reliable results than searching for the keyword directly:


I am frequently using the "Showing" filter to select the photos with keywords in the current view, for example all photos with the keyword "Bird" or "Bear".

User uploaded file

Feb 28, 2018 8:30 AM

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Mar 4, 2018 12:44 PM in response to léonie In response to léonie

I'm also having problems with search (not finding photos, showing incorrect search matches), which I have reported to Apple.


Also, I have many keywords but none are shown in the Showing > Show Only Keywords menu as you have shown in your post above. It has Keyword Manager... instead of Show Only Keywords. How does one get the keywords to show in this menu?

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Mar 4, 2018 12:44 PM

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Mar 4, 2018 2:10 PM in response to YeOldMacFan In response to YeOldMacFan

Click "Keyword Manager..."


When it opens, drag keywords to the top section "Favorites". Your Favorite keywords will get a keyboard shortcut assigned and will show in the "Show only" filter.

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Mar 4, 2018 2:10 PM

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Mar 4, 2018 4:04 PM in response to léonie In response to léonie

Thank you. I see the "Drag..." instruction but it's not a very intuitive UI; I've never seen one like this, where you drop something onto text (and that text then disappears). Come to think of it, shouldn't the prompt be "Drag your favorite keywords here." Maybe it's just my old age.

Mar 4, 2018 4:04 PM

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Mar 5, 2018 2:19 AM in response to YeOldMacFan In response to YeOldMacFan

It is not very intuitive. I am using a different approach to get keywords there.

  • I click "Edit Keywords" and assign a keyboard shortcut to the keyword in question.
  • The keyword will become a favourite.

I like the filtering by keywords a lot. It is saving me the trouble to create smart albums for every combination of keywords I might need.

Mar 5, 2018 2:19 AM

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Question: Keyword search fails to return results in Photos