I was stunned to find out that the search function on the Mail.app wasn’t working anymore since I’ve upgraded my Mac from Snow Leopard 10.6.8 to (the very cool) Lion 10.7. Thought it could be Spotlight not working, or something else.
Well, as it turns out, it’s a combination of 2 problems:
1) turn Spotlight indexing on:
sudo mdutil -i on /
2) when using IMAP, configure your account to Keep a message for viewing offline
That’s it! Where Snow Leopard was able to search thru already downloaded mail (although the above option was enabled), Lion can’t.
Now the search is working great!
I had the exact same issue and it was really getting me irritated!
Turning on Spotlight indexing seems to have done the trick.
That was driving me nuts, thanks!
Thanks for the tip! That was a very strange oversight with the new system that was driving me mental. Not sure why they would nix indexing by default — I’d assume it was a good reason.
How do I turn on the spotlight indexing? thx 🙂
Phew, thank you!!
Tks a lot! it was really annoying!!!
thank you so much. after entering the above in the terminal window and confirming with my password, my hdd started being indexed.
After some minutes spotlight and mail could find everything again.
This didn’t work for me (searching emails using Spotlight worked, but didn’t work in Mail). I had to quit Mail, delete a file called ‘Envelope Index Backup’ somewhere under the ~/Library/Mail folder, and then relaunch Mail. This is where I found the explanation for this: http://jimmitchell.org/2008/02/20/rebuilding-the-mail-envelope-index/
A huge Thank You! This has been bugging me for a while, and your fix seems to have worked for me.
Thanks so much. This fixed the problem with search on the mail.app in Lion.