Windows Search has become much more powerful over the past few iterations. With just a few taps of a keyboard, you can find nearly anything you’re looking for on your computer or the web. It’s even easier to search if you know the best efficiency-boosting tips.
But maybe Windows searches for too much when you type into the Start Menu. Whether you want to hide some private folders or just exclude an area from searching, you can easily prevent Windows from looking at certain folders when searching.
To edit search parameters, you need to adjust what folders Windows indexes on your PC. Type index into the Start Menu to open Indexing Options. Click the Modify button in the bottom-left to see everywhere Windows is currently indexing. By default, Windows will index your user folder, which includes your Desktop, Documents, and more.
Click the arrow next to your C: drive to expand it, then expand the Users folder. Uncheck anywhere you don’t want Windows to search — perhaps your Downloads folder is a mess and you never search it.
Once you’re satisfied with the folders Windows is indexing, click the Advanced button on the main Indexing Options window. Click the Rebuild button in the Troubleshooting header to rebuild the index with your new preferences. This could take several hours depending on your computer, so you might experience some hiccups when searching immediately after rebuilding the index.
If Windows Search isn’t cutting it for you, check out the best free powerhouse alternatives.
Have you modified the default Windows indexing options? Which folders don’t you search inside? Tell us what changes you made down in the comments!
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