Spotlight Search is an awesome feature that lets you search your entire Mac or iOS device at once. When using this feature, you may not want a certain file type showing up in your search results. This is relatively simple to configure via the Settings app.
In this Apple Toolbox tutorial, we will be showing you how to configure Spotlight Search. This tutorial requires an iOS device running iOS 5.
Configuring Spotlight Search
To start, open the Settings app on your iOS device. Once it has completely launched, tap on the option titled General. This option is located towards the middle of the Settings app.
Now, look towards the right-hand side of the screen. You will see an option labeled “Spotlight Search”. Tap on this option. You can now toggle the services that you would like to use with Spotlight. To turn an option on, tap on it. When you do this, a checkmark will appear next to the option. Do the same to turn the option off. Your iOS device comes with all of the options enabled, so it’s up to you to choose which ones you’d like to turn off.
Note: If you’re using an older iOS device, you may want to turn off Spotlight completely. This will improve performance and battery life. To do this, simply uncheck all of the options in the Spotlight Search.
Managing Spotlight – Mac OS X
To start, launch System Preferences. Once this app has completely launched, look towards the top of the window where you will see a header labeled Personal. Under this header you will see an option labeled Spotlight. Click on this option.
Make sure the Search Results tab is selected. Look towards the center of the screen. You will see all of the file types on your Mac. You can now select and deselect file types that show up in Spotlight search. You can do this by clicking on the checkbox that is located to the left-hand side of the option.
Now, click on the Privacy tab. You can now add folders that you would like excluded from Spotlight Search. To do this, look towards the lower left-hand side of the screen. You will see a plus button. Click on this button to add folders that you would like excluded. To reinstate a folder, click the minus button.
Lastly, you can change Spotlight’s keyboard shortcut from this window. Simply look towards the bottom of the window, where you will see a options labeled Spotlight menu keyboard option and Spotlight window keyboard shortcut. You can configure these options to your liking.
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Obsessed with tech since the early arrival of A/UX on Apple, Sudz (SK) is responsible for the editorial direction of AppleToolBox. He is based out of Los Angeles, CA.
Sudz specializes in covering all things macOS, having reviewed dozens of OS X and macOS developments over the years.
In a former life, Sudz worked helping Fortune 100 companies with their technology and business transformation aspirations.