2 Best Free Spotlight Replacements for Mac

Spotlight Replacements

If you are a Mac owner, then you I am sure you appreciate the tools that come included by default with your Mac. In fact, I consider the software that comes with the Mac are the best pre-installed software on the computer market, with applications like


, Safari, QuickTime, Disk Utility, GarageBand, iMovie, Messages,


and more. Each of these apps could easily cost dozens of dollars if they were for sale, yet Apple puts all of them on every new Mac.

Of all these and more though, Spotlight (Apple’s launcher and search assistant) is the one utility that is easily the most used by many, which makes it extremely important.

However, for many Mac users (myself included) Spotlight doesn’t perform as reliably as it should. In many cases when performing searches, all Spotlight shows lately are PDF files, apps and emails, while other important files and documents are completely overlooked. There are also many Mac users for which, despite performing well, Spotlight simply doesn’t cut it.

Spotlight Issues

If you are one of those Mac users, here we have two great Spotlight alternatives that not only perform much better, but also bring along several additional features at no cost.

Here’s a look at them:


Praised by a vast amount of Mac users as the best and most complete search and launcher app for the Mac, Quicksilver definitely lives up to its name. The application is a free, full-on Spotlight replacement that covers almost all bases for even the most demanding Mac users.


Both Quicksilver’s search parameters and its looks are fully customizable, allowing you to open the application anywhere on your Mac’s screen.

Quicksilver Original

The application is also a feature powerhouse and allows for plugins, add-ons, scripts and themes to be installed right from the app’s preferences, all of which provide it with far more features.

Quicksilver Morphed

All in all, Quicksilver is a great replacement for Spotlight, especially if you like to customize even the tiniest aspect of your Mac. If all you care about is just something simple and that helps you search fast though, then keep reading.


Found is quite the newcomer to the world of Mac launchers and search assistants that brings a few much-welcomed novelties to the table. To start, instead of just searching for your stuff on your Mac, Found also integrates with several of the existing cloud services like Google Drive, Dropbox, Evernote, SkyDrive and even Gmail attachments, allowing you to scan for files on all those services.


Note: Check out the our in-depth comparison of Google Drive and Dropbox for iOS, two of the best cloud services our there.

In practice, there are two of Found’s features that I find extremely convenient. The first is the app’s speed. Upon typing any search query, Found starts giving your results almost right away. In addition to that, Found also provides you with an instant Quick Look view of every file you browse from its results, saving you time and helping you find just the file you want.

Found Working

As for customization options and expansion capabilities, Found offers none. Still, for anyone looking for the most simple and fast alternative to Spotlight, Found easily delivers.

There you go. Two full-featured replacements for Spotlight that cost you nothing and give you a lot. Try them out and see which one you like best.

Last updated on 03 February, 2022

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