Spotlight Search is a system-wide desktop search feature of Apple’s MacOS and iOS operating systems. The spotlight is a choice based search system, which creates an index of all items and files on the system. You can Use Spotlight to search for things like apps, documents, images and other files.
Spotlight suggestions offer additional results like Wikipedia, news sites, Maps, iTunes, movie listings, and many more.
To open Spotlight, click the magnifying glass icon in the upper-right corner of the menu bar, or press Command-Space from any app.
To search for something, type words related to it like an application name, a word contained in a document, or a tag you’ve attached to a document. You can likewise look for things like a Wikipedia article, or any location as well.
Additionally Spotlight Search results also include dictionary definitions, currency conversions, and quick calculations.
Basic Spotlight Search Shortcuts
These are the four most basic shortcuts to use Spotlight:
- Open Spotlight menu – Command+Space
- Open Spotlight in the Finder – Command+Option+Space
- Clear Spotlight search box – Escape
- Close Spotlight menu – Escape twice
Navigation Keyboard Shortcuts & Spotlight Search Usage
These shortcuts are for interacting and navigating within Spotlight search results:
- Return– Open first search item.
- Arrow Up and Arrow Down– Navigate search results.
- Command+Return– Open to location of first search item in Finder.
- Command+I – Get Info on search item.
- Command key or hover with the Mouse cursor (OS X 10.7 and later only)– Show Quick Look Preview of Spotlight results.
- Command+Option while hovering over search result– Show path/location of the search result.
- Command+Arrow Up or Command+Arrow Down– Jump categories in search results.
Few other amazingly useful tricks Spotlight can do:
- Launch an App– Type the app name and hit Return to launch it.
- Get a Definition– Type a word to define and hover over the “Look Up” option to see the definition.