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Outlook Search Not Working – Fixed

Outlook is one of the best email service providers. Its number of users is increasing day by day due to its amazing features. One such feature is the Outlook email client search tool. It allows users to search for a particular detail in an email such as date, folder, the sender, and more. But due to several reasons, your Outlook search tool may not work. If you are going through the same Outlook issue and looking for solutions to fix Outlook search not working on Mac then, this is the best guide to go through. The detailed guide takes you through the reasons and most effective solutions to the issue.

However, before jumping into the solutions, let’s check out the reasons for the Outlook Search function not working issue.

Why Outlook Search is Not Working?

If you are searching for specific information in an email and Outlook is not showing emails or results based on your search then, there must be a problem with the Outlook search engine. There could be several reasons for such an issue in the Outlook account, some of the most possible are listed below:

  1. Windows search feature is turned ‘Off’.
  2. Issues in Windows Indexing Service.
  3. Outlook ost file is corrupt or damaged.
  4. An outdated Microsoft Office.

There can be many other unknown reasons for this issue. However, irrespective of these, you can fix this Outlook search not working issue in no time by following the below-mentioned solutions.

What to do if the Outlook Search is Not Working on Mac?

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There are various effective ways to deal with the Outlook search not working on Mac issue. This section contains all of them. Read and implement one by one. The methods are for Outlook 2016, 365, 2010 and 2013 versions.

Solutions 1

Fix Windows Indexing Service

If the reason behind the why Outlook search not working problem is a particular system error in Windows indexing service, then you need to rebuild the service by implementing the enlisted steps:

  • Open your system and go to the ‘Control Panel’.
  • Double-click the option of ‘Programs and Features’.
  • Click on the ‘Windows Features’ tab and select the option of ‘On’.
  • Hit the button of ‘OK’ and restart your system. 
  • Now, open MS Outlook and leave it while the application is reconfiguring the search engine.
  • Go back to ‘Control Panel’ and then open ‘Programs and Features’.
  • Check the box of ‘Windows Search Features’ and let it update the changes.
  • Once, the process is completed, go back to the ‘Control Panel’. 
  • Click on ‘Windows Indexing Service’ and choose the ‘Advanced Option’.
  • Select the option of ‘Rebuild and click on ‘OK’.
  • Let the process complete and then, verify the indexing process.
  • Press ‘Control’ and ‘F’ keys together and open ‘Indexing Status’.
  • If the message, ‘Outlook has finished indexing all the items’ pops up on your screen, this means the process is completed.
  • Now, restart your system for one last time to start afresh.

Once you have implemented all the steps, open your Outlook account and search anything to check if the search engine is working and if Outlook 2016 search is still not working, try the next method.

Solutions 2

Update Microsoft Office and Fix Outlook Search Not Working Issue

Outdated versions of MS Office often become the reason for technical glitches in an account. Outlook updating can solve the unresponsive search function issue. 

  1. Check updates in your version of Outlook. 

For Outlook versions 2016 and 2013

  • Open Outlook and go to the ‘File’.
  • Click on ‘Office Account’.
  • Drop down the tab of ‘Product Information’. 
  • Select ‘Update Options’. 
  • Click on ‘Enable Updates’. 
  • Select ‘Update Now’ and hit the option of any of the recent updates.

For Outlook versions 2010

  • Open Outlook and select ‘File’.
  • Navigate yourself towards ‘Help’.
  • Open ‘Check for Updates’. 
  • Select the option of ‘Install Updates’.
  • Select any of the available updates. 
  • Click on ‘Download’.

For Outlook versions MacBook

  • Start Outlook and find the option of ‘Help’.
  • Click on ‘Check for Updates’.
  • Dropdown the option of ‘How would you like to install the updates?’.
  • Select the option of ‘Automatically Download and Install’.
  • Open the list of ‘Check for Updates’ and choose any recent update.

2. Once the update has downloaded, click on the button of ‘Install’.

3. Run’ the new version

4. Restart your system

After applying the steps, open your Outlook account and search for a particular detail to get the results.

Solutions 3:

Repair Outlook

By repairing Outlook you can fix many common Outlook issues including Outlook search not working on Mac. Read the basic steps to repair Outlook with the help of built-in repair services.

Repair Outlook and fix your Outlook 2016 search not working issue

  • Open ‘Outlook Search Repair Service’.

(If the option is not available in your system, download it)

  • If any notification of duplicate Outlook installation pops on your screen, remove it.
  • Restart your system.
  • Open the option of ‘Reindex’.
  • Let the service completely and when you receive a ‘Reindexing has completed’ message, close it.

Repair Outlook and fix your Outlook 2010/ 2013 search not working issue

  • Click on ‘Start’ and open the ‘Control Panel’.
  • Scroll down the list of ‘View By’ and select the ‘Category’.
  • Scroll down the tab of ‘Programs’ and click on ‘Uninstall the Program’.
  • Click on ‘Microsoft Office’ and hit the button of ‘Change’.
  • Choose ‘Repair’ or ‘Online Repair’.
  • When ‘Control Window’ pops up click on ‘Yes’.
  • Once the process is completed, restart the system and you will see that Outlook 2013 search not working issue has been fixed.

Solutions 4:

Fix Outlook Search Not Working Issue on Mac through ‘Rebuild Database’ process

Use the rebuilt service to repair the corrupt database on your MacBook device. Below are the instructions which will help you do so:

  • Shutdown all the MS Office applications like MS Office, Excel, etc.
  • Press long on the ‘Option’ key and click on ‘Outlook’ and the ‘Microsoft Database Utility’ will be open. 
  • Select the database identity you wish to reconstruct. 
  • Hit the button of ‘Rebuild’.
  • Once the process is completed, restart your MacBook and open Outlook.

‘Microsoft Outlook Search Not Working’ issue needs to be fixed as soon as possible. This one issue can lead to many others such as:

  1. No search results
  2. Emails for a certain time 
  3. The search option will be removed completely 
  4. You may get incomplete search results 
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The aforementioned solutions are the simplest and effective at the same time. We are hopeful that at least one of the solutions will help you in dealing with the Outlook search not working issue. If you continue to face the same issue, chat with our email repair experts and get it fixed.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Related to Outlook Search Not Working
Q. How Do I Fix the Outlook Search Not Working?

If Outlook is not showing search results as per your searches then follow the below-mentioned steps to fix the issue:

1. Go to the ‘File’ and click on ‘Options’
2. Select the option of ‘Search’ and right-click on it.
3. Choose the option of ‘Advanced’ 
4. Scroll down the tab and click on ‘Rebuild’ and ‘OK’ respectively.

Q. Why Can’t I Search in Outlook?

Outlook has a feature called ‘Windows Search’. If any user has turned it off then chances are that Outlook will not show any search results or will take more time than usual. To turn it on back, find ‘Windows search’ and select the option of ‘Enable’ or ‘On’.

Q. How do I enable search in Outlook 2016?

Update the outdated version of Outlook 2016 to enable search feature in Outlook

1. Open the ‘File’ and select ‘Office Account’
2. Double-click the ‘product info’ to open it 
3. Select ‘Update Options’ and choose the option of ‘Enable Updates’
4. Choose any of the available updates and click on ‘Download’

Once the Outlook version is updated, turn the feature of Outlook search from ‘Off’ to ‘On’ to get the most relatable search results.

Q. How do I fix Outlook for Mac search?

Below are the pointers you should follow in order to fix Outlook for Mac Search: 

1. Open your Apple Macbook and go to the ‘Menu’
2. Open ‘System preferences’ and select the option of ‘Spotlight’
3. Click on the ‘Privacy’ tab to open 
4. Simultaneously, go back to the ‘Menu’ and open ‘Main Profile’
5. Pull the ‘Main profile’ folder to the ‘Privacy’ folder and leave.

Once you leave it to complete the procedure, the spotlight will naturally re-index the ‘Main profile’ folder and Outlook search is not working will be fixed on your Macbook.

Q. Why Does My Outlook Search Not Work?

Your Outlook search feature may not work because of ‘Outlook ost file cannot be opened’ error. Often the presence of corrupt ost files in Outlook causes many more problems and this is one of those. Fix your damaged ost files in Outlook and solve the Outlook search is not working issues in no time.

Q. How do I Enable Indexing in Outlook 365?

The following method consists of easy steps to enable search feature in Outlook version of 365.

1. Navigate yourself towards ‘File’ and click on ‘Options’
2. Select the option of ‘Search’ on the upper-left corner
                                              OR
1. Open ‘Control Panel’ in your system
2. Select ‘Index Options’ and click on ‘Advanced’
3. Choose the option of ‘Rebuild’ 
4. Click on ‘Ok’ to start the rebuilding process.

Once it finishes, restart your system and open outlook to search a particular detail in any email.

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