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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches System 10.4
Tiger only hintWord keeps all sorts of information in word-formatted files, including deleted text. So a spotlight on a word or phrase may bring up word files in which you had deleted those words. You can test this by opening a new file, writing some text, saving the file, then deleting some text and saving again. The deleted text will show up in the spotlight search.

To avoid this behaviour, place a single quote in the spotlight search as the first character: e.g. 'foo bar -- now you'll only get Word files that actually contain the undeleted foo bar text.

[robg adds: I'll admit I don't know why this works, but it certainly seems to -- if you have foo bar in a Word document, a search on 'foo bar will find it. But if your document only contains foo bar as deleted text, the same search will fail ... even though a normal search on foo bar will find it. Clear as mud, right?]
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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches | 5 comments | Create New Account
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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches
Authored by: paolinopaperino on May 04, '05 11:17:09AM

I've tried it now, but my spotlight doesn't find "deleted text" in word documents, so I think you have some kind of problem with your Word installation.



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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches
Authored by: faisal on May 04, '05 11:31:49AM

You can disable the feature which results in deleted text staying in documents. Under Preferences->Save, uncheck "Allow Fast Saves". The feature allows Word to save by appending a series of differences to the end of the file. By turning it off you are telling Word to rewrite the whole file every time.



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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches
Authored by: visionaut on May 04, '05 01:43:47PM

This is correct, but it's not the only factor - it's also related the mode of 'track changes'.

I always advise folks to run off 'fast saves' - also for info sensitivity/security reasons.



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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches
Authored by: phlops on May 04, '05 11:33:48AM

No no no, this is a known issue in the Word document format, if you Google for this, you'll find a trove of information. Not all deleted text remains in documents, it's a very hit and miss thing and whatever rhyme or reason there is to it is lost to everyone outside of Microsoft.

If you examine your .doc files in a plaintext editor you'll see this in action.

---
/phil



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10.4: Ignore deleted Word text in Spotlight searches
Authored by: captainhaddock on May 04, '05 07:03:14PM

I've discovered that if you make a smart folder based on a content keyword, and then delete that keyword from a text file in Textedit, the file does not disappear from the smart folder.



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