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How to Change Storage Location of Search Index in Windows 10

information   Information
By default, Windows will use the index when searching to give you faster search results. The search index only includes your selected locations. These locations can be filtered for what file types (extensions), file properties, and file contents you want indexed.

The index uses the Windows Search service and runs as the Searchindexer.exe process in the background. The index will automatically rebuild and update for changes made to the included locations since the last index rebuild to increase search result accuracy. By default, the indexing speed is reduced due to user activity. If the computer is running idle, then the indexing speed will go back to full speed to finish indexing faster.

The search index data files are stored in the %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Search\Data folder location by default. You can select to store the index to any internal location you like. You will not be able to select to use removable media, network, or external locations as the index location.

This tutorial will show you how to change the storage location of the search index data files in Windows 10.

You must be signed in as an administrator to be able to change the storage location of the search index.


CONTENTS:
  • Option One: To Change Search Index Location in Indexing Options
  • Option Two: To Change Search Index Location in Registry Editor


EXAMPLE: Default index location
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Change Search Index Location in Windows 10 OPTION ONE Change Search Index Location in Windows 10
To Change Search Index Location in Indexing Options

1. Open the Control Panel (icons view), click/tap on the Indexing Options icon, and close the Control Panel.

2. Click/tap on the Advanced button. (see screenshot below)

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3. Click/tap on the Select new button under Index Location. (see screenshot below)

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4. Browse to and select the new location (ex: "D") you want for the index data files, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)
Note   Note
The new location is where the Search/Data folders will be stored at.


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5. Click/tap on OK to apply. (see screenshot below)

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6. Click/tap on Close. (see screenshot below step 2)






Change Search Index Location in Windows 10 OPTION TWO Change Search Index Location in Windows 10
To Change Search Index Location in Registry Editor

1. Press the Win+R keys to open the Run dialog, type regedit, and click/tap on OK to open Registry Editor.

2. If prompted by UAC, click/tap on Yes.

3. Navigate to the location of the key below in Registry Editor. (see screenshot below)

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Search

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4. In the right pane of the Windows Search key, double click/tap on the DataDirectory string value to modify it. (see screenshot above)

5. Type the full path of the location you want to store the index at, add \Search\Data\ to the end of this path, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

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6. Close Registry Editor.

7. Stop and start the Windows Search service to apply. (see screenshot below)

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That's it,
Shawn