When I use the search function in "Files" in Elementary OS Loki, it only finds files in the folder that I'm currently in. Any way to activate recursive search?

When I install the "Files" version that is in the App Center, there search works as expected, but in the built-in version that comes with Loki it does not.

Thanks guys.

  • I cannot replicate your problem. And why have you added the nautilus tag? Is that what is installed under "Files" name from Appcenter?
    – user170
    Dec 5, 2016 at 9:18
  • elementaryos.stackexchange.com/q/122/170
    – user170
    Dec 5, 2016 at 10:30

1 Answer 1


Considering Pantheon Files ("File Manager" in Loki, not to be confused with Nautilus sometimes called "Files") the search tool it's a bit different and rather limited compared to those of Nautilus or Dolphin, or to specialized tools like Catfish or Gnome-Search - especially in the way it displays the results.

  • Search in current directory takes place by just typing the search.

  • Recursive search (current folder and sub-folders) takes place by pressing Ctrl-F and then typing.

Typing or clicking during search process will stop the search. Take care not to type or click during search process. More here.

The results are listed just as a drop-down list (and not as a file manager window or search-tool window) that also never contains more than ten items and that goes away in a second if you click or focus away in any way. (So, the search is 'recursive' with Ctrl-F but you only get ten results).

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  • 1
    I think the rational is that it should be similar to a browser navigation bar dropdown rather than a Google search. Usually it is possible to type a suitably specific search term to limit the hits. Dec 6, 2016 at 23:22
  • A branch is in the pipeline that increases the number of hits shown, however. Dec 6, 2016 at 23:23

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