Why is my search function not working in Outlook on Mac?

Answered by Ricardo McCardle

There can be several reasons why the search function in Outlook is not working on a Mac. I’ll explain each possible cause in detail below:

1. Incomplete or corrupted Spotlight Search indexing: Outlook relies on Spotlight Search indexing to provide search results. If the indexing is incomplete or corrupted, it can cause issues with the search function. To resolve this, you can try rebuilding the Spotlight index by following these steps:
– Open System Preferences on your Mac.
– Click on the “Spotlight” icon.
– Go to the “Privacy” tab.
– If you see your Outlook profile or any of its parent folders listed there, select them and click the “-” button to remove them.
– Close the Spotlight preferences.
– Wait for a few minutes, then go back to the Spotlight preferences.
– Click on the “Privacy” tab again.
– Now, add your Outlook profile or its parent folders back to the list by clicking the “+” button and selecting them.
– Close the Spotlight preferences again.
– Spotlight will start reindexing your Outlook data, which may take some time depending on the size of your mailbox. Once the indexing is complete, try searching in Outlook again.

2. Special characters in the Profile name: If your Outlook profile name contains special characters, such as the slash mark (/), it can cause conflicts with the search function. Try renaming your profile to remove any special characters and see if that resolves the issue. To rename your profile, follow these steps:
– Close Outlook.
– Open the “Applications” folder on your Mac.
– Find the Microsoft Outlook app and right-click on it.
– Select “Show Package Contents” from the context menu.
– Open the “Contents” folder.
– Open the “SharedSupport” folder.
– Open the “Outlook Profile Manager.app” file.
– In the Profile Manager, select your profile and click the “Rename” button.
– Remove any special characters from the profile name and click “OK”.
– Close the Profile Manager and launch Outlook again. Check if the search function is now working properly.

These are the two main reasons that can cause the search function to stop working in Outlook on a Mac. By following the steps outlined above, you should be able to resolve the issue and get your search function working again.