Windows 11 Outlook Search function Not Working, Lets restore it

The search function on Outlook makes it easy to find emails, contacts, tasks, and more. But what if Outlook search stops displaying search results

Microsoft Outlook is one of the most popular and reliable email clients for Windows users, mainly used to send and receive emails. But similar to problems with apps on Windows 11 there are times Outlook may also fail to perform its duties. And One of the common problems you may experience is the search function isn’t working in Outlook. The search function on Outlook is very helpful, saving you from having to scroll through hundreds of emails to find something. But sometimes you may experience Outlook search not finding all emails or Outlook search not working on Windows 11 PC. Here in this article, we have a bunch of solutions apply to fix and restore the Outlook search function on Windows 11.

Outlook didn’t show the most recent emails received on its search results.

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Outlook search not working on windows 11

There are a variety of reasons why the search function isn’t working in Outlook, an Outdated program, windows search indexing problems, and system file corruption are common. Again there may be an error on your personal folder (.PST) file that needs to repair. Whatever the reason, running the index troubleshooter, Update or repairing the Outlook app, or repair corrupted files with SFC tool is very effective to restore the search functionality on Outlook.

  1. Rebuild the search index: Go to File > Options > Search > Indexing Options > Advanced > Rebuild.
  2. Check if indexing is complete: Go to File > Options > Search > Indexing Options and check if the number of items indexed is increasing.
  3. Disable add-ins: Go to File > Options > Add-ins > Manage > COM Add-ins and uncheck any third-party add-ins.
  4. Repair Office installation: Go to Settings > Apps > Apps & Features, select Microsoft 365, and click on Modify > Quick Repair or Online Repair.
  5. Run the Windows Search troubleshooter: Go to Settings > System > Troubleshoot > Additional troubleshooters > Search and follow the on-screen instructions.

Make sure Outlook is up to date

Let’s first update the outlook app, To do so,

  • Open Outlook and navigate to File then click on Office Account.
  • Under Product Information click Update Options, then in the drop-down box select Update Now
  • Outlook will check for updates and install them, if available.

Run the Search and Indexing Troubleshooter

This is one the most straightforward solution you must apply whenever Outlook not searching all emails or windows search not working.

This will scan for the prevailing issues and repair them automatically

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  • Press the Windows key + X and select settings from the context menu,
  • Navigate the system then troubleshoot and click ok other troubleshooters,
  • Scroll down on the right side, find Search and Indexing, and click the Run button.
  • When the troubleshooter opens, checkmark on Outlook search doesn’t return results and continue with the onscreen instructions.

Search and index troubleshooter

  • The troubleshooter now will identify and fix problems automatically, Wait for the troubleshooting process to finish.
  • After running the troubleshooter reboot your computer refreshes the operating system and the Outlook app, also clear minor problems as well.
  • Now open Outlook and search for some older emails, see if the search is working

Check Search Indexing and Locations

Whenever you notice Outlook search isn’t working or Outlook not searching all emails you need to check and verify the indexing options and locations and ensure it’s appropriately set up.

look into the Indexing options and locations to ensure that everything has been set up properly.

  • Open the Outlook app on your computer, and place the cursor in the Search box.
  • Click on the search tools menu and then select indexing status,

Index status

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  • Let Outlook complete index files, When it finishes, click OK, and see if Outlook’s search is working

index mails

Ensure Windows Search service running

Windows search service must on running state to find or search files, and folders on Windows our emails on Outlook. Let’s check or restart the Windows search service it probably fixes the problem.

  • Press Windows key + R, type services.msc and click ok to open the services window,
  • Scroll down to locate the Windows search service, right-click on it select restart,
  • Well if the service not started, double-click on it to open search properties,
  • Change the startup type automatic and start the service next to service status.

Start windows Search Service

  • Now, restart your computer and check if there is still a problem find emails on Outlook.

Repair Outlook on Windows 11

Problems or errors with the office app also be the reason why Outlook not searching all emails. The latest Windows 11 can detect and repair problems with office apps including Outlook without losing any saved data.

To repair Outlook on Windows 11:

  • Press Windows key + I to open Windows 11 settings,
  • Navigate Apps then Installed Apps to display all installed apps list on your computer,
  • Scroll down or type Office in the Search field to locate the Office app,
  • Click the three-dot menu next to it and select modify options from the menu. Select the quick repair option and click repair.

Repair Microsoft office app

Well if you are using builtin office app, click three dot menu and select advanced options

office advanced option

  • Scroll down the right side to the Reset section and click the Repair button.
    After the repair finishes, a checkmark will display next to it.

repair office app

  • After the repair, relaunch Outlook and see if search is working.

Rebuild the Search Index

Also, rebuild the search index on your computer and fix Outlook search or Windows search problems on your computer. Well, Rebuilding the search index cache provides a fresh start and removes any conflicting files and helps restore the outlook search function again.

Ensure that Outlook is being indexed for search

  • Press Windows key + R, type control.exe srchadmin.dll and click ok to open indexing options,
  • Click the Advanced button, new window opens here click Rebuild next to Troubleshooting

Rebuild search index

  • A message will show you that rebuilding the index can take a while to complete—click OK to confirm.

Search index confirmation

  • Wait while the indexing rebuilding completes. After it’s finished, try Outlook search again to check if it’s working.

Repair the PST file

Error with Outlook PST file is another primary reason why Outlook not searching all emails. Let’s Repair the PST file using a builtin pst repair tool that probably repair and restore the outlook search function

Press windows key + E then navigate C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16

Repair Outlook .pst file

  • Here locate scanpst.exe and double-click on it to run the tool
  • Click on the Browse button and locate the PST file then click repair. You will usually find it in the Users folder under Office
  • After you locate the file and click the Start button and the app will start recovering your data.

Reset Microsoft Outlook on Windows 11

Did the above solutions fail to fix the problem and Still Outlook not searching all emails on Windows 11? Let’s try reset the Outlook app reset or removes app data and conflicting files and provides a clean installation with the latest app updates.

  • Press the Windows key on the keyboard to open the start menu and select on settings from there,
  • Navigate apps then install app now scroll down to locate an office, click the three-dot menu, and select Advanced options from the menu.
  • Scroll down the right side to the Reset section and click the Reset button.
  • When it ask for confirmation click the Reset button again

To reinstall Outlook on Windows 11:

  • Open the Start menu, and type in Outlook.
  • Right-click on the first search result and select Uninstall option.

This should remove any data associated with the app and resolve search issues in Outlook.

Run an SFC and DISM Scan

Corrupted system files could be another reason that affects the search function on your computer. Let’s run System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) scans that repair the system image, scan system files for corruption and try to repair or replace them with the correct one.

  • Press Windows key + S and type cmd, Right click on the command prompt select run as administrator,
  • Type sfc / scannow and press enter key on the keyboard to execute the command, and let it complete 100% scanning
  • After the SFC scan completes, run a DISM scan using the command DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

Let it complete the scanning and repair process, once done reboot your computer and check if the Outlook search function is restored on Windows 11.

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