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Recurring Outlook Search and Indexing Issue RRS feed

  • Question

  • Greetings everyone,

    I'm quite new to this forum; joined a while back and only posted questions here and there.

    (This can be long, TL;DR summary is at the bottom)

    I recently come across this issue on my boss' notebook. He's using a HP Z book with Windows 7 Pro 64 bit installed with MS Office 2010 Standard SP2. The initial problem reported was that his Outlook cannot be loaded due to corrupted PST file and it was found that the hard disk was dying and so it was replaced. The data could not be salvaged from the broken sector so Outlook sync all the e-mails from scratch. We're using Google App Mail services.

    After taking a few days to sync the over 26 Gb of contents (more than 50 000 e-mails) - the syncing process is slow irrespective of Internet connection speed or bandwidth.

    Once all the e-mails are downloaded, Outlook was unable to search for any e-mail older than 24 hours. I recognize this as indexing problem. I went to check on indexing options tried to rebuild index file but it completed after 1 - 2 second with no additional index being added and it did not solve the issue. Troubleshooting doesn't help either.

    So I went on and force Windows to recreate the index file. I located the index file and renamed it after stopping Windows Search services. Then I turn on Windows Search Service and rebuilt the index. This problem was fixed but not for long. I recalled seeing there are over 200 000 indexes to rebuild.

    The following week, Outlook is unable to search for e-mails again. I went to check the indexing status and it show this figure;

    Somehow windows have lost all the rebuilt indexes for the e-mails. There's over 100K indexes lost. The figure reverted back to when the first time I looked into this issue.

    For now, I rebuilt the index again and it "fixed" this issue again.

    But not for long. Sooner or later the problem returns.

    Does anyone know what is happening here?

    TL;DR version

    *********************

    Outlook is not able to search e-mail older than 24 hours. Rebuilding index temporarily solved the issue but eventually the issue returns. The number of files indexed fall back to older value similar to before the index is rebuilt.

    Any good and relevant advice or suggestion is highly appreciated.

    Saturday, April 21, 2018 6:08 AM

All replies

  • Hi Justin,

    Are you using a POP account?

    As far as I know, there is a known issue that Outlook search couldn’t be completed. Please refer to the details under Issue #5 in this link to see whether this is the case for you.

    Please also check whether Outlook .msg files are included in Indexing via Control Pane > Indexing Options > Advanced > File Types.

    In case there was something wrong with profile, we could test this issue in a new profile to check if issue continues.

    Besides, we could disable and then re-enable Outlook or pst-file for indexing. To do this, please go to Control Pane > Indexing Options > Modify. Uncheck Outlook and then click OK. Then re-enable Outlook in Indexing Options and restart Outlook to check if search results fetch correctly.

    What's more, we could also check Event Viewer and look for any errors logged by the “Search” or “Microsoft Outlook”. Paste the detailed error message here so that we can do more research.

    Any updates, please post back at ease.

    Regards,

    Perry


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    • Edited by Perry-Pan Monday, April 23, 2018 5:57 AM
    • Proposed as answer by Perry-Pan Wednesday, April 25, 2018 1:51 AM
    Monday, April 23, 2018 5:54 AM
  • Hi Justin,

    Are there any updates with this issue?

    Just to check whether my reply is helpful to you.

    Regards,

    Perry


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they helped. If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnsf@microsoft.com.


    Click here to learn more. Visit the dedicated forum to share, explore and talk to experts about Microsoft Teams.

    Tuesday, April 24, 2018 9:37 AM
  • Hi Justin,

    Have you found the fix?

    If you have more question, please feel free to post back. If you have solved this issue, we will appreciate it a lot if you could share here.

    Thank you for your understanding and support.

    Have a nice day.

    Regards,

    Perry


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they helped. If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnsf@microsoft.com.


    Click here to learn more. Visit the dedicated forum to share, explore and talk to experts about Microsoft Teams.


    • Edited by Perry-Pan Saturday, April 28, 2018 4:27 AM
    Saturday, April 28, 2018 4:27 AM
  • Hi there Perry,

    Thank you for your kind reply.

    I am sorry I haven't gotten around on this forums as of late due to a weird bug with signing in into this forums which I'm sure many users have complained about. (I'm currently using Incognito mode or private mode on Firefox to log in).

    Regarding the issue so far..

    The issue has not returned yet since the last time I recreate the index files. The search function is actually and in fact working. I do not understand why previously the e-mail indexes disappeared by themselves.

    I am suspecting it's because of his large PST files containing more than several hundred thousand e-mails. I am trying to help reduce the size by archiving the e-mail by years and months. Every now and then Outlook will "find new e-mails to index" when I dig through old e-mails to archive.

    So I suppose when Outlook said it's complete, there are some e-mails still not indexed.

    At any rate what should I do to this thread? I do not know for sure this matter is resolved, I am just waiting to see if it reoccurs anytime soon.


    • Edited by Justin LWC Wednesday, May 2, 2018 6:15 AM
    • Proposed as answer by Perry-Pan Wednesday, May 2, 2018 6:15 AM
    Wednesday, May 2, 2018 6:13 AM
  • Hi Justin,

    Thank you for your update and sharing the detailed information here.

    By the way, would you mind marking your reply as the answer so that it could give a reference for other users in this forum?

    If this issue returns in the future, you could feel free to post back.

    Thank you for your understanding and support. Have a nice day!

    Regards,

    Perry


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they helped. If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnsf@microsoft.com.


    Click here to learn more. Visit the dedicated forum to share, explore and talk to experts about Microsoft Teams.





    • Edited by Perry-Pan Wednesday, May 2, 2018 6:20 AM
    Wednesday, May 2, 2018 6:18 AM
  • Hi Perry,

    Just a little update. The issue has finally returned again today. It's such a mystery.

    Just yesterday I was working on his notebook to help organize his e-mails and it was still fine. The symptoms leading to this is that outlook was getting slower and slower while searching for e-mails. I noticed but I did not measure the time taken as I search and organise e-mails on this notebook on daily basis for a while.

    Since I only have an hour a day, I did not get far but i managed to remove some 8700 emails to archive.

    These 8700 items in archive did not disappear from the index. As I checked today, I can search recent e-mails and those 8700 items from year 2014 which I archived. 

    It can be seen here that the indexed items is now reduced by over 200 000. Somehow it seems like something "un"index those files.

    Here is the type of files under indexing option for today (when problem reappeared). This was after I turn off indexing for Outlook and turn it back on.

    I will proceed to try what you recommend though. I turned off indexing for Outlook and turn it back on but it doesn't seem to be doing anything. 

    I will get back to you with updates on this matter. 

    Thanks. 

    **

    Edit: the missing IFilter does shine a new light on things, but I haven't found a solution that works all the same.


    • Edited by Justin LWC Saturday, May 5, 2018 4:08 AM added new details
    Saturday, May 5, 2018 1:33 AM