Saturday, December 16, 2006

Excluding trashed items from Spotlight search results

Saturday, December 16, 2006

By default, OS X's Spotlight results include whatever is lingering in your trash can waiting to be permanently purged from the system. This can be confusing if you're engaged in a seek and destroy mission because the files you banish don't disappear from view until the trash is manually emptied.

To fix this you can exclude the trash can from Spotlight's search results by dragging its folder into the 'Privacy' pane of its 'System Preferences' panel.

First though, before you can manipulate your .trash folder you must instruct Finder to reveal any hidden files and folders on your system. This can be done in any one of the following ways...

1. Use the multifunction system maintenance tool, OnyX. 'Parameters' > 'Finder' > tick the 'Misc. Options: show hidden files and folders' check box.

2. Open a Terminal (located in /Applications/Utilities) window and type the command, "defaults write com.apple.Finder AppleShowAllFiles ON" (without the quotation marks).

3. Double-click on Show\Hide Files to reveal your hidden files and repeat the process to hide them again.

Once you've outed your trash folder, visit your /Users/Username/ folder and drag .Trash into the 'System Preferences' > 'Spotlight' > 'Privacy' pane.

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