Start Menu Search Results May Be Incomplete in Windows 10

Last Updated on November 14, 2016

Sometimes, the Start menu search shows its search results with incomplete search results. When that happens, you will be shown a tooltip saying that “These search results may be incomplete“.Windows 10

This is not an error, per say, but sort of a warning which tells you that the search isn’t able to list all the files on your computer. Now, if you don’t understand what index is, then imagine it as a file (or collection of files) which keep the information about the location of everything on your computer.

Whenever you search for anything in the start menu or the file explorer, Windows consults that index and is able to list that file instantly in the results. If the file you are searching for isn’t present in the index, then the search takes up significantly more time to list out the relevant results.

Windows automatically updates this index whenever you make any changes to the computer in order to make the searches faster. Sometimes, however, this index can become outdated. This is when the Start menu search will show you that the “search results are incomplete” warning.

Fix Search Results may be incomplete in Start Menu search

  • Search for Control panel in the start menu search and open it.advanced-indexing-options
  • In the Control panel, open the Indexing options. It should show Indexing complete on the top. If it does, then that means that all files can be searched on your computer. If not, then you will need to build an index.

Note: Even if the box shows that “your index is complete”, you may want to rebuild it once again if you are getting the “search results incomplete” warning on your start menu search.

  • Click on Advanced button to open the Advanced options for the Indexing settings.
  • Click on Rebuild. Now, Windows 10 will rescan all the files in your computers to make an index. This will make your search results instant, especially if you are using an SSD.
  • Click on File Types tab in the same window and make sure that all the Extensions are checked. The ones which are checked are the only ones which will show up in the start menu search.
  • Click OK and close everything.
  • Restart your PC to make sure that the new index is being used by the start menu search.


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Written by Utkarsh

Utkarsh Bhatt is a certified tech expert and software engineer for a Fortune 500 Company. He was born in 1995, making him one of the oldest members of the team at EFX. Utkarsh loves solving technical issues and is always the first to jump on any problem that needs solving. When he’s not coding or debugging, he enjoys playing video games (especially Super Smash Bros.) and watching cartoons.

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