Scott Hanselman

How to Reset your Google Desktop Index Cache

December 27, 2005 Comment on this post [4] Posted in Musings
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Google Desktop and its Indexer just wouldn't relax today. I suspected index corruption for a while but didn't feel like uninstalling and reinstalling as I didn't want to lose any settings.

To reset your index, shut down GDS and delete everything in this folder:

C:\Documents and Settings\ <username> \Local Settings\application data\Google\Google Desktop\ <some long number>

...except the files that start with "sidebar_*.*" and you'll be back in business when it restarts.

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About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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December 28, 2005 0:09
This is so funny that you posted this today because just this morning I was looking for how to do this and I couldn't find anything so I did just what you didn't want to do, uninstall. Oh well. Next time I will know where to look first.
December 28, 2005 3:41
I'm convinced that Google Desktop sucks. I agree that it's super handy, however, it jacks your system up if you ever uninstall it. Maybe Google doesn't think anyone should ever uninstall it.

Try this (I've done it on two system with the same result):
Open an explorer window
Open Process Explorer
Right click on a folder in the explorer window
Hover the mouse over the context menu
Look at your processor usage in Process Explorer

All should be normal (i.e. no extra processor usage).

Now uninstall Google Desktop and do the same thing.

On both systems I've tried this on I found that after removing Google Desktop (from now on called GD) from a system my processor spikes when hoving over a folder context menu in explorer. The GD software appears to leave some trace of itself partially installed. My Explorer process will use between 50% and 100% of the processor as long as the mouse is hovering over the menu. If you check the threads for the explorer process you'll find that BrowseUI.dll is using the CPU like crazy.

Using FileMon I was able to determine that it appears to be looking for a data stream on the folder. At least one of the entries will always be "folder name:{4c8cc155-6c1e-11d1-8e41-00c04fb9386d}:$DATA".

Reinstall Google Desktop and the problem goes away.

I wrote Google about it a month ago but they never responded. I wish they'd fix their GD uninstaller so it would remove all of the GD software.
February 12, 2006 20:11
I follwed these directions, and now my index sits perpetually at zero - no files indexed. Do I need to do something to kickstart it? Thanks.
February 13, 2006 5:27
DR - Not sure what to tell you. Have you tried uninstalling and reinstalling?

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.