Spotlight Acting Weird? Try Turning it Off and On Again

Are some apps not showing up in Spotlight? Is it acting weird?

Some help online would have you write complex incantations into the Terminal or would have you digging in to System Preferences and unchecking every box and placing your entire Mac’s drive into the excluded list.

And you should try those methods first.

In fact, the method described below is different to the official Apple-recommended way to do this, which is here by the way:

There is an easier way that worked for me. Your mileage may vary.

First, turn off Spotlight:

sudo mdutil -a -i off

Then, turn it back on:

sudo mdutil -a -i on

For me, this worked well.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Simon SC

I design and code web apps for a living. Tech enthusiast. Commentary on journalism, design, code, tech, cities, soccer, and other stuff.