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File and Folder Settings Index - Enable or Disable

Brink

Staff member
mvp
Index - Enable or Disable How to Enable or Disable Search Index in Vista and Windows 7
This will show you how to Enable or Disable the Search Index. You may want to disable it to get more accurate search results, or to stop your hard drive from running so much.
Published by Brink Category: File and Folder Settings 
#1
ByLine
How to Enable or Disable Search Index in Vista and Windows 7
Synopsis
This will show you how to Enable or Disable the Search Index. You may want to disable it to get more accurate search results, or to stop your hard drive from running so much.
How to Enable or Disable Search Index in Vista and Windows 7

information   Information
This will show you how to Enable or Disable the Search Index. You may want to disable it to get more accurate search results, or to stop your hard drive from running so much.


The Index keeps track of the files on your computer and stores information about the files, including the file name, date modified, and properties like author, tags, and rating. The index is used to make searching for files in Vista much faster. Instead of looking through your entire hard disk for a file name or file property, Vista scans the index, which allows most results to appear in a small fraction of the time that a search without the index would take.
Note   Note
The Index will run slowly in the background during low or idle computer usage to keep itself updated and current from the changes you make to the files from the locations that you have listed in the index. If you do a lot of changes in these indexed locations, then your search results will not always be accurate until the index has finished updating itself. This can cause the hard drive to run a lot, especially for the first week or so after installing Vista. If you do not do a lot of searches or need very accurate search results, then disable the index to allow Vista to default to using the full non-index search of the drive. The searches will take a bit longer since it is a non-indexed search, but it will cut down on the hard drive running as much and will give accurate search results.
warning   Warning

  • Disabling the index may also impact some Microsoft programs, like MS Office Outlook or Windows Media Player, that use the Index when they search.
  • Disabling the index in Windows 7 will cause you to no longer be able to do searches in Libraries. To be able to search in libraries, the Windows Search service needs to be Started and set to Automatic. Libraries require it's included folders to also be added to the index to be tracked properly even though they will still open properly.
  • Disabling the index in Windows 7 will cause you to no longer be able to use Arrange by in Libraries.

EXAMPLE: Index Enabled and Disabled
Options_Enabled.jpg
Index_Greyed_Out.jpg




OPTION ONE
Disable or Enable the Index "Windows Search" Service

NOTE: This will enable or disable the Index for Windows completely. It will not affect the regular non-indexed search feature in Windows.
1. Open the Start Menu, then type services in the search box and press Enter.​
2. If prompted by UAC, then click on Continue (Vista) or Yes (Windows 7).​
3. Scroll down and right click on Windows Search, then click on Properties. (see screenshot below)​
Services.jpg

4. To Disable the Index
A) Click on the Stop button. (see screenshot below step 6)​
B) Next to Startup type, click on the drop down menu arrow and click on Disable.​
C) Click on Apply.​
D) Go to step 6.​

5. To Enable the Index
A) Next to Startup type:, click the drop down menu arrow and click on Automatic. (See screenshot below step 6)​
B) Click on Apply.​
C) Click on the Start button.​
NOTE: If the Windows Search service will not start, then leave it set to Automatic and see: How to Fix the Start Error For Windows Search Service to Enable the Index

6. Click on OK.​
Service Properties.jpg

7. Close the Service window.​




OPTION TWO
Enable or Disable Index for a Specific Drive

NOTE: This will only enable or disable the Index for the drive you selected.
1. Open the Start Menu.​
2. Click on the Computer button on the right dark side.​
3. Right click on the hard drive that you want to enable or disable Index on, and click on Properties.​
4. To Disable the Index
A) Uncheck the Index this drive for faster searching box. (see screenshot below step 6)​
B) Go to step 6.​

5. To Enable the Index
A) Check the Index this drive for faster searching box. (see screenshot below step 6)​
NOTE: Step 5 in the OPTION ONE section above will need to be set to enabled for this to work to.​

6. Click on Apply.​
Drive Properties.jpg

7. Select (dot) Apply changes to drive, subfolders, and files. (see screenshot below)​
8. Click on OK.​
Confirm.jpg

9. Click on Continue in the Access Denied window. (see screenshot below)​
Access Denied.jpg

10. Click on the Ignore All button for the Error Applying Attributes window. (see screenshot below)​
NOTE: Vista does not like any attempt to mess with the boot files. This is why you get this error and should select ignore all to skip changing these files.
Ignore all.jpg

11. This may take a while to finish depending on the size of your hard drive, so sit back, kick the feet up and relax a bit.​
12. When finished, click on OK to close drive properties window. (see screenshot below step 6)​
That's it,
Shawn



 
Last edited by a moderator:
#4
Shawn,

Many thanks for the the guide it worked well. just got a brand new laptop today with vista prem. left work early on the pretext that we had a leak in the house. guess i will be playing till the wee hours.

David
 

ggbib

New Member
#6
wee hours? heh. I'll be digging through these tutorials forever.

Just the format for these tutorials are nice, and they work.

Thank you once more Vista Forums.
 

Brink

Staff member
mvp
#7
LOL Jerry. I'm glad that you like them. If you notice anything that needs improvement in them, just drop me a PM.

Shawn
 
#8
I was looking araound in the services and I found a service with the name NMIndexingService. I was wondering if that also had to do with Windows Indexing.
 
#11
Quick question on this. I store my Outlook pst file on my local drive. Does this get indexed with this feature? The only real intense searches I do on my laptop are in my email. I'm thinking Outlook indexes/handles these searches, so turning off Vista's indexing still makes sense. Can you confirm?
 

Brink

Staff member
mvp
#12
Hi MadDogAZ,

Welcome to Vista Forums. :party:

Outlook adds itself and uses the Index in Vista for it's searches, so turning it off will also turn it off in Outlook.

Shawn
 

Abiosis

Wrath Soul
Member
#15
I found I've to do both methods to turn the Indexing off completely...

is that any error'll occur while turning off indexing & 0 page files?

please enlighten,thanks Shawn
 
#17
Is it correct that a lot of constant running of hard disk causes it to age off more quickly.
i recently lost a disk. my pc would not read it anymore so will turning off indexing improve h.disk life. I really need to know cause i have the torrent's running about 20 hours a day plus i don't have a ups.
 

Brink

Staff member
mvp
#18
Hi Neon.Dead,

It really depends on if you do a lot of searches or not and prefer the Index search or non-indexed search. It can help if you do not do a lot of searches. If you do, then the Index can help make doing searches quicker and not search the hard drive as long per search, but the results may not always be as acurate.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 

bmb

New Member
#20
Hi

I have one question about Indexing and Disabled it from my D drive( My Computer Right Click..as like Option 2 here shown) and i wants to disable it from C drive too if this helps for better Perfomance.But if i disable it.... i will get any Error message for this all the time ??Coz im littlebit worried one mentioned 1000 error ..thats why..

And if i disable from Service windows search what is the Diffrence??