5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Microsoft integrated Windows Search into File Explorer to improve file searching. However, some Windows 10 users encounter glitches that make the File Explorer search tool unusable. This guide offers five solutions for troubleshooting the Windows 10 File Explorer Search.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

The problem with Windows 10 File Explorer is inconsistent and appears in different forms. Sometimes Windows Search works, but other times it doesn’t. Some users experience freezing when using the search bar. There are also reports of File Explorer failing to suggest keywords as they are typed in the search bar. The troubleshooting fixes below should help restore the File Explorer search to normal. Before trying the solutions, you may want to try rebooting your PC, as this has resolved the issue for some users.

1. Restart Windows Explorer

If File Explorer’s search doesn’t work, restarting the app could fix it. You can restart Windows Explorer from the Task Manager. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Launch the Windows Quick Access Menu (use Windows key + X) and select Task Manager.

Step 2: In the Apps section, select Windows Explorer and tap Restart at the bottom-right corner of the window.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

You can right-click on Windows Explorer and select Restart.

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5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

This will close all open File Explorer windows. Launch File Explorer again and see if the search bar works now.

2. Reconfigure Indexing Options

If a file exists on your computer but doesn’t appear in the Windows Explorer search results, you can reconfigure the Windows Explorer Indexing Options. Here’s how:

1. Launch the Run window by pressing the Windows key + R.

2. In the Open dialog box, enter the command shown below and click OK. You can also press Enter on your keyboard.

rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL srchadmin.dll

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Next, tap the Advanced button.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 4: Go to the File Types section.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 5: Select the ‘Index Properties and File Contents’ option and click OK.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Rebuilding the Windows Explorer’s search index according to your chosen indexing option will take some time. You will receive a prompt informing you that a few search results may be incomplete while the index is being rebuilt. Tap OK to continue.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Wait a couple of minutes (30 minutes to an hour) and try searching for files again. If File Explorer’s search still doesn’t work or show files on your computer, proceed to the next troubleshooting method.

3. Run the Search and Indexing Troubleshooter

You can use the Windows Search and Indexing troubleshooter to detect and fix File Explorer issues automatically. Simply follow these steps:

1. Open the Windows Settings menu and select ‘Update & Security.’

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 2: On the right menu, select Troubleshoot

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 3: On the Troubleshoot page, go to the ‘Fix other problems’ section and choose ‘Search and Indexing’.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 4: Tap the ‘Run the troubleshooter’ button.

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5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

That will launch the ‘Search and Indexing’ troubleshooter. Select the problems that apply to your computer from the provided options and tap Next.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

If you select ‘My problem isn’t listed above,’ you will be prompted to provide a description of the search-related issue you’re experiencing on your computer.

The troubleshooter will diagnose and fix any issue it finds. If no problems were identified, try the next solution below.

4. Modify File Explorer Search Options

If Windows File Explorer doesn’t display certain file types in search results, the app’s search functionality may have been configured to exclude those file types. To include the missing file types, follow these steps:

1. Launch Windows File Explorer and go to the View section.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 2: Select Options to open the File Explorer Folder Options window.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 3: Go to the Search section.

Step 4: Click the options “Include compressed files” and “Always search file names and contents”.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Step 5: Apply and tap OK to save the changes.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

5. Update Windows

The Windows 10 File Explorer Search not working could be due to a bug in the Windows OS build installed on your computer. Update your PC to the latest Windows 10 build to fix the issue. Launch the Windows Settings menu and select ‘Update & Security’. If there’s an update available for your device, tap the Download button.

5 Best Fixes for Windows 10 File Explorer Search Not Working

Search and Explore

Use any of the troubleshooting methods above to fix the Windows 10 File Explorer search tool. Let us know which method worked for you. You can also comment for further assistance.

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Next up: If File Explorer is slow on your Windows 10 computer, try one of these 9 fixes in the article linked below to resolve the issue and speed things up.

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