Outlook on MacOS – Search not working

By Ross Madden
Published on September 3, 2019 9:43 am MT
Updated on May 16, 2022 9:07 am MT
Posted in Apple, E-mail, General CNSIT, Knowledge Base

This post is marked as Deprecated and therefore contains outdated information.

Every so often we are contacted with a MacOS Outlook client that his having trouble searching. The symptoms typically resemble something like “No Results” found or a severely limited set of results returned, such as only the past week’s worth of e-mail.

Outlook on MacOS utilizes the built-in Spotlight indexing system for its search, and sometimes this gets messed up. The following steps are the first to take when trying to remedy this situation.

If you are running a version of MacOS older than Mojave (10.14) – the solution is fairly simple. Just download and run the “Outlook Search Repair Tool” found here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/outlook/troubleshoot/outlook-for-mac/useful-tools

For those that are running Mojave (10.14) or newer – the following steps should accomplish the same thing (although more complicated):

  1. Choose Apple menu, then System Preferences, and then Spotlight.
  2. Select the Privacy tab.
  3. In Finder:
    1. On the Go menu, select Go to Folder…
    2. Copy and paste the following location into the “Go to the folder:” dialog box and select Go: ~/Library/Group Containers/UBF8T346G9.Office/Outlook/Outlook 15 Profiles/
  4. Drag the “Main Profile” folder to the Privacy tab. Once added, remove the folder, and Spotlight will re-index the folder. You must perform this step for any additional profile folders you have.
  5. Please note that re-indexing a folder could take many hours, so be patient!

More in-depth solutions can be found here: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/2741535/outlook-for-mac-search-returns-no-results-and-task-items-are-not-displ

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