How To Turn Indexing On – Or Off

Dear Computer Lady,

Do you know of an easy way to turn my indexing back on?
I have a Windows 10 and somehow it got turned off —so my searches aren’t working properly and when I simply click on turn on indexing is just not working.

I’ve googled it but I have a come up with a solution yet.

Help! Tiffany

Dear Tiffany,

I can tell you the way that you should be able to turn indexing back on, but if these methods don’t work, then it means there is a problem with Windows 10 and you will probably need to get your computer fixed.

First, you can turn on or off indexing for any drive on your computer. Here is how to do that:

1. Open File Explorer using either the link on your taskbar or in the start menu.

2. Click on “This PC” in the left column.

3. Right-click on your hard drive in the main window, and click “Properties” in the context menu that appears.

4. Make sure the “General” tab is selected in the drive properties dialog box, and make sure there is a check mark at the very bottom where it says, “Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed in addition to file properties”.

5. If there is not check mark there, click to check it off and click the “OK” button at the bottom of the dialog box.

Second, you can check to make sure specific locations are indexed. Here is how:

1. Click the start button (or just tap the windows logo key on your keyboard) and type “Indexing Options”.

2. Click on Indexing Options in the start menu.

3. In the Indexing options dialog box, you can view and modify different locations using the “Modify” button.

4. If you suspect the index itself is corrupted, you can click the “Advanced” button and use the “Rebuild button to delete and rebuild the index. (this could take quite a bit of time depending on the amount of files on your drive)

5. When you are finished, click “OK” and then Close.

The last thing you can check is that the indexing service is turned on. Here is how to do that:

1. Click the start button (or just tap the windows logo key on your keyboard) and type, “Services”

2. Click on Services in the start menu.

3. Scroll down the list of services until you find “Windows Search” and double click on it.

4. Make sure startup type is set to, “Automatic (Delayed start) and click the “OK” button to save your changes and close the dialog box.

Hopefully, adjusting one or more of these settings will fix your searching.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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