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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 04:26 PM   #1
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Angry Spotlight on an empty stage

(I've posted this twice--probably not cool. First I searched and found a rant from 2013, and posted this there. Then I doubted I'd find an answer or even enough sympathy there () so I'm starting this new thread...)

I just found and registered for Eh to figure Spotlight's empty field out. Ever since I upgraded this Macbook Pro to 10.8.5 (it's a 2012-ish 2GHz Intel i7 with 4 GB, bought when I dumped hot coffee on my previous Macbook Pro), the Searchlight is stumped. Empty! Used to be, I could type in a letter or two and instantly WHAM! my sought item was somewhere in the list. 1 second. Now it can't find anything.

Not just the external, now-full external hard drive, but even on the Pro's hard drive itself. Just now, for e.g., was trying to load a photo of my 2 dogs (now down to 1) for my profile pic, can't find the 'yin-yang' titled photo. It used to be amazing. It's true that my external hard drive (where I believe that photos resides) has been often unplugged, whereas it used to be permanently USB'd when it still had room, but it may be on for days and still I get ... blank. It offers "Search Web for ___" or "Search Wikipedia for ___." That's it!

How can I force the system to re-index the lot and get me back to where I had been?
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 05:10 PM   #2
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Try this:
Rebuild the Spotlight Index | OSXDaily

or this:
https://www.google.ca/search?client=...Hoqo-QOVmoGYDA
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 07:25 PM   #3
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How have I set privacy so my drives can't be indexed?

Thanks pm-r. Haven't quite tried this yet, because I'm leery of dragging things into the Privacy window. (And the Habs just got an embarrassing goal against...)

There are a lot of ads covering the image of the Privacy window move, so I need to confirm: I drag the drives onto the Privacy tab? Is this to say that Spotlight cannot index all my drives because I have some privacy setting? I do expect my drives to be private, of course, and not explored by others, but ... is that the issue? I have protected my drives?

This will be a huge help once i take the step...
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 07:43 PM   #4
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Update: Cannot put either virtual external hard drive, nor Macintosh HD, onto the Privacy tab "due to an unknown error." Have I forbade this somehow? Did the new OS installer perhaps leave it protected? This explains my indexing issues, but I can't yet solve it.
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 08:08 PM   #5
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I haven't got a clue or what you mean about some of your comments like; "lot of ads covering the image of the Privacy window move" and "virtual external hard drive".

You shouldn't have any ads or anything other that the Finder and the Pref Pane windows showing.

And are the "drives" real mounted drive volumes or some sort of "virtual Image" disks???
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 09:02 PM   #6
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by 'ads' I mean ...

  • virtual drives means there is one external drive, but it has 2 named volumes, which is the virtual part.
  • There are ads on the first link you send--the non-Google one--and they block my view of the pane illustration.

Latter doesn't matter because I tried your other link. I still an unable to bring any drive into the privacy window, so can't remove them and get the indexer to do its thing.
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Old Dec 20th, 2014, 10:12 PM   #7
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I guess you've got some real problems if you can't even read the directions on web pages due to ads.

May be try some other searches and see if you can read the hits like try:
https://www.google.ca/search?client=...Ne6h-APRloDIBA
or
https://www.google.ca/search?client=...C9TQ-APRo4GAAw

But it sounds like a permission problem with the mounted volumes as Apple says:
"Note: You can only add folders or items to the Privacy tab that you have ownership permissions for. "

Or try using the + method to add a drive or volume and follow the instructions to navigate and select the drive. Doing so may give a message as to why you may not be allowed to do so.

You can check them by selecting each and do a Get Info on them and check the permission settings. Or even try selecting the option in that window to "Ignore ownership on this volume". That may help.

Maybe some other members will chime in with some other suggestions for you to try.

Add:
But you should be able to read this:
Spotlight: How to re-index folders or volumes - Apple Support

Last edited by pm-r; Dec 20th, 2014 at 10:32 PM.
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