[Fixed] Spotlight Search Not Working on macOS Mojave

[Fixed] Spotlight Search Not Working on macOS Mojave

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Overview: There are many users who are facing problems with Spotlight search after installing macOS Mojave. Today in this post we will troubleshoot Spotlight issue and will get the spotlight working on macOS Mojave.

So, let’s start with a real user’s practical scenarios!

Scenario 1: Cannot type into Spotlight after Mojave upgrade

I just upgraded/updated to Mojave and now I cannot type into Spotlight. When I open spotlight (either Command Space or clicking the icon in the top right), the spotlight search bar comes up, but it disappears as soon as I try to type anything. I have rebooted into Safe mode and it still does not work for my account, but it does work if I log in with the Guest account. I tried the instructions to click the desktop, then spotlight, then delete, etc. and that had no effect. I tried to kill the Spotlight process and that also did not help. Thanks.

Source: Apple Forum

Scenario 2: MacOS Mojave Spotlight Lag

Recently, I have updated my MacBook Air from High Sierra to Mojave. My MacBook is of Early 2015 with a 1.6 GHz Intel Core i5, a 4 GB 1600 MHz DDR3, and 256 GB storage, of which I still have 150 GB remaining. Before I updated to Mojave, the spotlight was working perfectly fine and it was very fast. After the update, it takes roughly 15 seconds for the spotlight to show any search results and sometimes does not even show results. I have got my spotlight to reindex Macintosh HD and I have also run First-Aid in Disk Utility. Does someone know how I could fix this problem? I would very appreciate a workable solution.

Source: Apple Forum 

Like the above two users there are multiple Mojave users who are facing an issue with the spotlight, let’s go ahead and fix this.

Also, Fix Slow Performance Issue on macOS Mojave

Restart Your Mac

Most of the time simple restart fixes the issue. Click on Restart from the Apple Menu and check the drop and drag functionality on the Mac.

Run First Aid in Recovery Mode

  • Press and hold Command+R keys and start the Mac to go in recovery mode
  • On recovery mode screen select Disk Utility
  • Select First Aid option from the top list
  • Click on Run

Once the repair is complete, restart your Mac and check Spotlight.

Rebuild the Spotlight Index on Your Mac

  • Go to the Apple menu and select System Preferences and click on the Spotlight.
  • Select Privacy.
  • Drag the folder or disk which you want to re-index to the list, you can also click the Add (+) button and select the folder or disk to add.
  • Now from the same list select the folder or disk that you added and click the Remove (–) button to remove it from the list.
  • Exit System Preferences.

The spotlight will now reindex the contents of the folder or disk.

Update your Mac

macOS Mojave Users

  • Go to Apple menu and select System Preferences and click on Software Update in order to check for updates.
  • Click on Update Now to get the updates. You will also find More info option to know more about each update and you can select particular updates to install.

For Earlier macOS prior to macOS Mojave

Go to the App Store app.

Click on Updates in the App Store toolbar and click on Update option to install the updates.

Start Mac in Safe Mode and Check the Spotlight

  • Press and hold the power button to shut down your Mac.
  • Now start your Mac and immediately Press and hold the Shift key as soon as the start-up sound is heard.
  • Release the Shift key when you see the Apple logo. Safe Boot appears on the macOS Mojave start-up screen.

Safe Mode restricts the use of many applications on the system and allows examination in a more restricted environment. In case the Spotlight works fine in Safe Mode then you have to isolate the software which is causing no boot issue.

Create Another Account on Mac

  • Go to the Apple menu, select System Preferences and then click on Users & Groups.

Users and group


  • Click on the lock icon to unlock it, put your administrator name and password.

Click on the lock Icon Mac

  • Now click on Add or Plus icon to create new account

Click on the plus icon

  • Click the New Account pop-up menu and then choose a type of user i.e. Administrator or Standard user and put all the necessary details and Click on Create User.

Admin account

Now check the spotlight.

Perform Clean Installation of macOS Mojave from USB flash drive

In case none of these steps works then performing a clean installation may help you to fix Spotlight. Please note that you will lose all your data on the Mac. Visit this link to perform the clean installation: Apple link How to create a bootable installer for macOS

Wrap Things Up

I hope this article helped you to fix the spotlight issue on macOS Mojave.

Also, Fix macOS Mojave Common Issues and Fixes

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