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Outlook Search Not Working | Troubleshooting Won’t Search

Microsoft Outlook is one of the most popular ways to communicate via mail, send links, documents, and different attachments, especially for business purposes. Microsoft is increasing its functionality day by day to make it more effective. Many people are using it to share mails, contacts, calendars, notes, tasks, etc. Usually, a person shares multiple mails in a day, and if out of those suddenly you need any particular mail, then there is a facility to search mail. But, sometimes, we are facing issues while trying to search, and Outlook search not working or Outlook won’t search.

This may consume a lot of time to see all the previous mail and find out your result, and it is irritating as well. Today, we will discuss the methods to fix the issue are.

How to rectify the issue Outlook search not working?

  1. Rebuild Outlook Index to resolve Outlook search not working

To do so, there are two different ways. We can try any of those or both one by one.

  • With the help of Program and features
    • Open Run and Search Control panel
    • Now, click on Program> program & Features> select Outlook or Microsoft Office
    • Select Change option given on top of the menu bar
    • Choose either Quick Repair or Online repair option
    • In the end, click on Repair tab to resolve the issue without connection to the internet
  • With the help of Outlook Index Repair Menu
    • Open Outlook
    • Go to the File menu, and select Options then click on search
    • Click on Advance and select Indexing options and click on ok button
    • Now, click on the Rebuild tab to rebuild the search index again.
  1. Check the Location’s Index to resolve Outlook search not working

We should check the location of Outlook Index to resolve search issue by following the steps:

  • Go to the Outlook Program
  • Click on the File menu and search Indexing options
  • Select Modify option
  • Tick the Checkbox given next to the Microsoft Outlook (MSI\Gavin)
  • Finally, click on ok button
  • Now, reopen the system and check it the issue resolved or not.
  1. Resolve Outlook search not working by using Registry
  • Open Run dialog box and type “Regedit” and press the Enter button to open Registry
  • Press Ctrl + F keys together to open search box then copy and paste the below-written registry:


  • The same registry will be searched out within a few seconds
  • Once searched, select the right panel
  • Then right-click and choose New Dword (32 bit)
  • Name the New DwordPreventIndexingOutlook and assign it to the value 0.
  • Press the ok button
  • Now, restart the system to check if the issue is resolved or not.
  1. Resolve Outlook search not working by repairing your Outlook Personal Folder File (.PST)

Repairing .PST is also a very effective method to get rid of this issue because sometimes the search may encounter the problem of corruption.PST folder. So, you basically need to repair the tool. Toll’s location may vary by version to version. Here, you have to look for” scanpst.exe.” You can find the location of .PST file in outlook 2010, 2013 and 2016 from


  • Now, right-click on scanpst.exe and open Run administrator
  • Press the Browse button, then copy and paste yours.PST personal folder address in the address bar
  • Select relevant accounts and click on Open, then start the system

This is a bit lengthy and complicated process. It may take a few minutes, but this will surely resolve the issue Outlook won’t search.

  1. Update the latest version of Microsoft Office to resolve Issue


Sometimes, the problem is coming because we are using an outdated version of Office. If the Update is option is coming there then follows the steps to update Microsoft Office:

  • Open Outlook
  • Click on File then go the Office Account
  • Go to the Product information click on the drop-down button to see the Update option
  • Select Update Now and give it time to update
  • Restart the system and check if the issue resolved or not

But sometimes users face an issue that they are unable to get any update option and there is only an about button available. In that case, consider the following:

  • Did you install any pirated version of Office in your system?
  • Does the workplace restrict you, or is there any group policy for manual Update?
  • Have you made any changes to the system group policy?
  • Are you running any volume license issued by your workplace or similar?
  1. Check Outlook Indexing Group Policy settings to resolve Problem

If you made any changes in Indexing Group Policy, then also you may face this issue. So you can check to fix the problem:

  • Type “gpedit” in the start menu and o to the User Configuration Option
  • Click on Administrative Templates
  • Go to the Search option
  • Now, check the Default excluded paths and Prevent certain indexing paths for alterations
  • If the policy statement is set to Not Configured, then it will confirm that this is not the reason for your Outlook won’t search the issue.
  1. Uninstall and Re-install to resolve Outlook search not working

If you are done with all the above-written hacks, and nothing is working, then the last thing you can do from your end is to uninstall and install the application. It is a very long and time taking process; also, there is no assurance whether your issue will be resolved or not, but it may work. So you can also try this.

If unfortunately, nothing worked and your problem is not yet resolved, then it is requested to contact the office support team ether from the website by contact on the toll the free number, via chat if available or you can write them a mail. Or you can also visit any nearest service center to take the expert’s help you can connect with any tech professional to get rid of this issue.


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