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When you want to search encrypted files by using the Search feature on Windows 10, you may find they don’t appear in search result. However, how to make encrypted files searchable on Windows 10. We will show you a guide in this post.

Are you familiar with the Search feature of Windows 10? Indeed, it builds a database which can be used to index the locations and information which are required to show your files from known folders as soon as possible.

On the one hand, this feature is able to make finding contents much faster. On the other hand, there is also one caveat: Windows 10 can’t index the files that are locally encrypted on the computer.

But, it is the default behavior. It means that if you are using file encryption, you are able to update the settings to make this type of content searchable.

Then, do you know how to make encrypted files searchable on Windows 10?

In this post, we will tell you how to add encrypted files to search results on Windows 10.

Tip: If the Search bar on your computer doesn’t work normally, you can refer to this post to solve the issue: Here Are 6 Reliable Solutions to Windows Search Not Working!

How to Make Encrypted Files Searchable Windows 10

If you need to make encrypted files searchable on Windows 10, you need to change index settings. Please try these steps:

1. Open Start.

2. Search for the Indexing options and choose the top result from the search result to open the experience.

3. Click on the Advanced button.

choose Advanced

4. Click on the Index Settings tab.

5. Under the File Settings section, please check the Index encrypted files option.

Index encrypted files

Note: You are allowed to enable this option when using a device without encryption. But, you can only utilize this option when you have already used drive encryption on the machine.

6. Press the OK button.

7. Press the OK button once again to confirm that the operation will rebuild the search index successfully.

8. Press the Close button.

After these operations, Windows 10 will begin to index the encrypted files to make them searchable when using the Search feature.

However, if you want to hide the encrypted files from search results, you can use the above steps, but on step 5, you need to uncheck the Index encrypted files option.

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How to Index Additional Locations

You can modify the indexing options to include the encrypted files, by default, Windows 10 will only add to the database those files in known locations, like from the Documents and Desktop folders. If you're saving encrypted files on a different drive, you will also need to specify that location with these steps:

1. Open Start.

2. Search for the Indexing options, and then choose the top result to open the experience.

3. Press the Modify button.

press Modify

4. Choose the location with the content type. In addition, you can also press the Show all locations button to find the additional folders.

Select the location with the content type

5. Press the OK button.

6. Press the Close button.

After using these steps, the encrypted files will be appeared gradually in the search results.

Although this guide is based on Windows 10, but the indexing encrypted files ability has been established for a long time. You can also use these steps on Windows 8.1 and Windows 7.

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