Exclude Categories of Items from your Spotlight Searches

In the previous post, we looked at how to exclude files and folders from Spotlight searches from the Privacy tab of the Spotlight preferences window. You can also exclude categories of items from your searches. For instance, if you never search for fonts or music, you can exclude these categories from all Spotlight searches.

Additionally, you can rearrange categories to set the order in which they appear in the Spotlight menu. By default, Applications appear first in the menu because many people use Spotlight as an application launcher. But if you tend to spend all day searching for names and phone numbers from your Contacts application, then it would make sense to move Contacts to the first position so that they appear first during your searches.

Quick Guide: To Exclude Categories from Spotlight Searches

  1. Choose  > System Preferences from the menu.
  2. Click the Spotlight icon.
  3. Click the Search Results tab on top of the window.
    Click the search results tab on Spotlight window
  4. To exclude a category from a search, click the checkbox next to the category to uncheck it.
    Uncheck box to exclude item from spotlight search image
  5. To change the order of how items appear in the Spotlight menu, click the item and drag it to the desired new location.
    Click and drag category to desired position in spotlight search results list
  6. When finished, close the Spotlight window.

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