Problem: The Search window in ArcMap does not return any results


The search function in ArcMap fails to run and does not display any results in the Search window when searching for data or tools.


This issue can be caused by, but is not limited to, the following:

  • A toolbox or custom toolbox was created which may be connected to a remote server
  • An eminent folder is present from a previous installation after an upgrade
  • A corrupt user profile

Solution or Workaround

Review the following options for the best possible solution to the issue.

Option A: Re-register the system toolbox folder
  1. Click the Search Options drop-down arrow in ArcMap, and select Search Options.
  1. In the Index tab, click Add and navigate to the default system toolbox folder below:
C:\Program Files (x86)\ArcGIS\Desktop10.x\ArcToolbox\Toolboxes
  1. Click the Index New Items button, and wait for the process to complete.
  2. Click Apply and OK to close the window.
Option B: Edit the FIPSAlgorithmPolicy in the registry
The instructions below include making changes to essential parts of your operating system. It is recommended that you backup your operating system and files, including the registry, before proceeding. 

Consult with a qualified computer systems professional, if necessary. Esri cannot guarantee results from incorrect modifications while following these instructions. Therefore, use caution and proceed at your own risk.
  1. Launch the Registry Editor from the desktop by typing regedit.exe in the Windows Start menu search box. Click OK.
  2. Navigate to the following path:
  1. Right-click Enabled (or Disabled) and select Modify.
  2. Ensure the value data is set to 0.
  3. Launch ArcMap.

Option C: Rename the "DefaultDomain_Path..." folder(s)
These folders contain the user.config files for each installed version of ArcMap. It is advisable to back up these folders before renaming them.

In ArcMap, the user.config file is used for storing the registry keys and settings related to the search window for the user account accessing the application. For more information about user,config files, see the article "FAQ: What are the user.config files for in ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro?" in the Related Information section below.

There may be more than one folder in this location, each one represents a particular version of ArcGIS.
  • Rename the DefaultDomain_Path folder(s) from the following location:

Related Information