Outlook 2007 Instant Search not working anymore on Vista

Since the beginning of this week I wasn't able to search anymore in Outlook and has I am using this a lot I was really pissed off.

I finally found an explanation in one of the Microsoft Forum:

Jake, you may have been hitting a known Office 2003/2007 setup issue.  If you install any Office 2003 component after installing Office 2007, Outlook 2007 Instant Seaerch stops working.  You'd have to repair your Office 2007 installation to repair the issue.

 I did installed Word 2003 because otherwise I couldn't work on my Tech Head Brothers authoring tool that is using VSTO 2005. So I had no choice than to install Word 2003. Even if my tool is working in Word 2007, I can't load the solution in Visual Studio 2005 without having Word 2003 installed. What are you doing guys? It is a real pain.

I am now trying to repair my Office 2007 as recommended... and bingo :-(


What should I do now ? :-( 1:23 AM I go to bed that stuff really suck!


  • Ceri: Thanks for the feedback. Did you found a solution in the meantime ?

  • I had the same problem and tried Office Diagnostics but that didn't solve the problem. What solved it was booting up into safe mode and opening Outlook 2007. As soon as I did that a balloon announced the office file needed repairs. when the repairs finished i double checked the instant search again and it was working fine. I re-booted and opened Outlook again and waited for the file to be re-indexed and then the search was working perfectly again!

    It used to be that Outlook would tell me if there were problems fixing the PST file while running windiws normally but this time it didn't tell me. Only when I booted in safe mode was it able to do something about it. Perhaps there was a new driver or application that was interfering.

    Hope this helps you.

  • Thanks Pete for sharing you tip! In the mean time my issue was solved but I don't know really how. I had a fix of Word 2007 and it might that that did the trick.

  • I have had the same problem and it's driving me nuts trying to fix it. I've rebuilt the index several times with no luck.
    After reading your comment, I realized that my problem began after I installed Microsoft FrontPage 2003. Is there something I can do that will allow me to keep FP 2003 loaded on my Vista machine and Office 2007?

  • Frank: I had similar experience but with Word 2003 that was installed after office 2007. I tried then to open a .doc and the office 2007 setup started automatically and fixed the issue

  • Same problem here, Exchange search stopped working one day after installing Vista and Office 2007, only I did not install any Office 2003 components. Found a MSDN posting saying this is a known issue with Exchange Server 2000, but offering no solution other than installing a hotfix on the server. It seems there are several possible causes for the Exchange 2007 search not working.

  • Same problem; search worked fine when starting VISTA in safe mode en the running OUTLOOK 2007; however : when returning to "normal mode" the search did not work ! (message : "indexing your items", .....

    Thanks for Your help,


  • Ok, I had this problem as well... check this out...

    1. In outlook 2007 go to > Tools > Instant Search > Search Options. Take the check out of "Personal Folders" and click OK. It will make you restart Outlook. Now, reverse the process and add the check back and it SHOULD re-index the mail file.

    2. Control Panel > Indexing Options. Click on Advanced at the bottom, then click the Rebuild button. Be warned that this will rebuild the entire index for all files, not just outlook.

    Good Luck!

  • Thanks Bert.
    Yours recomendations worked perfectly.

  • hey dee ho !
    after bert's initial instructions helped but disappeared, i decided to try the ole uncheck the drives in the search options trick and knock on plastic, search works now !

    thanks all ! (mostly bert :)

  • I had a my Personal Folder corrupted and when this was re-created, I noticed that my search results in Outlook were now imcomplete. So I followed these instructions from a previous post....

    1. In outlook 2007 go to > Tools > Instant Search > Search Options. Take the check out of "Personal Folders" and click OK. It will make you restart Outlook. Now, reverse the process and add the check back and it SHOULD re-index the mail file.

    And that worked quite well for me. I was surprised to see that after checking the box to re-enable my Personal Folder to be indexed, I then checked ...
    Outlook -> Tools -> Instant Search -> Index Status

    ...which showed that all items were indexed. It was very quick, too quick to really have re-indexed my 700M PST file. But I am now seeing many more hits on the same search that I had previously run, so something resolved itself.

  • thanks for all the help on this issue. i too installed an '03 access and even though i reinstalled word and outlook '07 searches weren't working. it was driving me nuts all week until i did a google search and found this page. running in safe mode did not work. method of going into search options and unchecking personal folder closing and then opening and rechecking worked. thanks again, laura

  • I reinstalled the office 2007 now i am able to search but only new mails not from old mails

  • Thanks M$ Sux it worked

Comments have been disabled for this content.