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Spotlight is failing to index OS X network homes on a windows server

Posted on 2010-09-21
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Last Modified: 2013-11-08
I have 13 macs running 10.6.4 that are joined to my AD.  The user's object in AD, under the profile tab, is set to access a home directory that is located on my Windows Server 2008 box.  The user's AD account has full permission on all the files in that home folder.

The problem we are having is that every time a network user logs into that account, the Mac will try to re-index everything.  For users with large profiles (20+gb) this can take hours.  

Any ideas?
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Question by:tferro999
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by:roylong
ID: 33729438
I don't think you can spotlight an SMB mount from windows.  Mac OS X server supports spotlight across the network on apple mounts but I think the server is playing a part on that too.

If you just want to stop the indexing, go into the spotlight preferences (system preferences) while the share is mounted and select to exclude this share from spotlight in the privacy tab.  I have not seen the issue you are experiencing but would welcome feedback as to whether this resolves your issues.
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by:marook
marook earned 250 total points
ID: 33733120
Spotlight can't index server volumes!
And absolutely not SMB shares! Spotlight is a HFS+ extension.

On an OS X Server, it's spotlight ON the Server that does the indexing, and stores the index along with permissions put on.
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Author Comment

by:tferro999
ID: 33736281
I've read the same thing about not being able to index server volumes, but it does work for network home directories.  I logged in this morning, allowed it to spend 30 min indexing and sure enough, was able to search and find files on my desktop and documents folder which are hosted on a Windows Server 2008 box.  I believe the the network home directories rely on symlinks.
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roylong earned 250 total points
ID: 33737853
some more information::

Spotlight will index your files and run just as it does on a local hard drive if both the computer you are on and the server are both running Leopard. Plus you have to share the files with AFP (which is the default). If you are using a network drive on a Windows machine, or with Tiger, this will not work. Still Yep will track the files, but you cannot search the contents. You can search on filenames only.

this link helps indexing, although I do not think it will assist with your particular issue, it may give someone else further ideas about a possible solution.

http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20050430233117572
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Author Comment

by:tferro999
ID: 33739032
I think its safe to say that this just isn't going to work.
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Author Closing Comment

by:tferro999
ID: 33739038
not possible to enable spotlight on windows volumes
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Netscaler Common Configuration How To guides

If you use NetScaler you will want to see these guides. The NetScaler How To Guides show administrators how to get NetScaler up and configured by providing instructions for common scenarios and some not so common ones.

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