• Trying to repair Windows Search after updating to Win11

    Home » Forums » AskWoody support » Windows » Windows 11 » Questions about Windows 11 » Trying to repair Windows Search after updating to Win11


    Company updated my Dell laptop running Win10Ent to Win11Ent. Windows Search was borked from the moment I first logged-in the new Win11 instance.

    I had moved my search db to a second internal SSD; during the Win11 upgrade the drive got marked read-only. Eventually had to restore to a Win10 backup, put Windows Search db back to default (verified it was working), then mark second SSD as ‘offline’ and then go through the update again.

    Windows Search is still broken.

    The built-in troubleshooter yields an idiotically hilarious result (see attached).

    Have been through many different approaches, including:
    dism /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:”SearchEngine-Client-Package”
    dism /Online /Enable-Feature /FeatureName:”SearchEngine-Client-Package”

    Getting these errors when running the Troubleshooter:
    0x%08x (0x80070003 – The system cannot find the path specified. (HRESULT : 0x80070003))

    0x%08x (0x80070660 – The Temp folder is on a drive that is full or is inaccessible. Free up space on the drive or verify that you have write permission on the Temp folder. (HRESULT : 0x80070660))

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Search
    DataDirectory =%ProgramData%\Microsoft\Search\Data\
    DefaultDataDirectory =%ProgramData%\Microsoft\Search\Data\

    Via ICACLS I’ve verified permissions look the same as those on a computer whose WSearch service is running.

    Windows Search is not visible in the GUI add/remove Windows Features NOR is the Event Viewer category “Microsoft-Windows-Search” present!

    I have done this a couple of times
    dism /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:”SearchEngine-Client-Package” (with /norestart AND rebooting)
    dism /Online /Enable-Feature /FeatureName:”SearchEngine-Client-Package”

    I’ve also:

    I’ve run the /checkhealth + /scanhealth, as well as even running the /restorehealth against the Win11 upgrade *.wim
    DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:%sources%\install.wim
    and then running SFC /SCANNOW all to no avail.

    Really, really, don’t want to do a clean Win11 install, and 3rd-party search apps aren’t an option in my environment.


    P.S. This is cross-posted from one I created on Reddit and Tweaking.com – only respondent was one that assumed I wasn’t experienced (I am!), and whose only thought was to re-image my machine.

    Viewing 1 reply thread
    • #2467806

      Personally, I ditched Windows Search as it is basically brain dead. I use NirSoft’s SearchMyFiles. I set it up as a scheduled task to run with admin privileges so I don’t have a problem searching the C: drive. Then I place a shortcut on my taskbar that runs the scheduled task.

      This program is super fast and has more options that I’ll ever use but it gives me total flexibility on What, Where, and Contents to search for.


      May the Forces of good computing be with you!


      PowerShell & VBA Rule!
      Computer Specs

      • #2467815

        Unfortunately, MS uses Windows Search for Outlook and OneNote, which it doesn’t appear SearchMyFiles supports. I’ll keep it in mind, though!

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2467827

      The preview update for Windows 11 includes that fix. You may want to try installing the preview or see if the August updates help?

      Generally speaking I don’t like/use dism.  I do repair installs over the top because it fixes things whereas I’ve never had good luck with using dism.

      Susan Bradley Patch Lady/Prudent patcher

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2468322

        I did a repair upgrade via the 2261 Preview, but the only change was a less non-sensical results message when the Search and Indexing troubleshooter finished 🙂

    Viewing 1 reply thread
    Reply To: Trying to repair Windows Search after updating to Win11

    You can use BBCodes to format your content.
    Your account can't use all available BBCodes, they will be stripped before saving.

    Your information: