Home Tech 7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

There is a wide range of people who need to work with various files and folders regularly and often face turbulences of being unable to locate or recall where they might have saved a certain file.

In such situations, sometimes it takes a lot of time to look for the same, thus eating away the time you might have allotted for some other task. 

To prevent or lessen situations like this from happening often, some software has been designed to look out for the searching part for you. To talk about, Spotlight would be the one we would like to mention first.

Spotlight is one such platform, which happens to be the default application for Mac devices, which aids you in looking for files, performing calculations, search definitions, or search system settings and hence, makes your work 10x faster and simpler. Besides these, Spotlight has some more fascinating features up its sleeves for you as well. 

In case you are looking for some more amazing applications which resemble Spotlight in its numerous features, we are here to list some of the best Spotlight Alternatives that might be perfect for you.

Best Spotlight Alternatives – Our Top Pick👌

1. Find any file

Find any file (Download Here) is among the best Spotlight alternatives where the software makes use of the file system driver to execute the functions. 

To kickstart your work on this platform, you need to select a location, where you would be interested to locate all the files you will be working on.

The various locations where you could store your files can be network volumes, Finder selection, even a local disk, or any specific location where you would want to find your files.

Best Spotlight Alternatives

This software lets you search in an extremely precise manner by a lot of file properties, viz. name, extension, size, range, kind, etc. 

When choosing the location for saving your files, a dropdown menu can be seen. From there, make sure to select a search criterion and a named operator as well.

For instance, let us say that you had created a file a few weeks ago which was located somewhere on your local disk. So, you got to set up the criteria: “Find items – inside the local disk,” “Name- begins with” ( put the approx name of the file you had chosen), and “ Created date – is within the last”. Then, proceed on to click on “Find” to look for your file on the local disk.

Find Any File gives its users a hierarchical view of the items that one looks for. Here, you could change it with the help of cmd+2 or just click casually on the “View” icon that you are going to find at the top left corner of the results window.

This view comes with the pattern of alternate black and gray rows, where the black ones are directly related to the file and the gray ones just lead you or show you the folder that is enclosing the file. 

This software can also look for textual context if it is located in most binary files and plain text files too. With the facility to include Spotlight results, it can also look for texts in PDF, Word, and Excel documents as well.

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

If you are in search of some images, the image preview browser helps you in locating them easily. Here, you can save the lookups of your files ( they are supposed to have the extension “.faf” ).

Next, double-click on them in the Finder to have them begin with the search or even use the searched item as a pre-set. The results that have been found can easily be copied to the clipboard or be saved to text files having the extension “.paths”. 

This software lets you extract data from other apps, like Keyboard Maestro, PopClip, Alfred, and some more as well. IT comes with a free trial for its users, after which a subscription fee of $6 has to be paid to enjoy the benefits provided by this application.

Thus, working chiefly on various versions of macOS, Find Any File is an excellent option to consider as an alternative to Spotlight.

2. Alfred

Alfred is another picked-out alternative to Spotlight that can be considered to be one of the best of its kind. This platform is an award-winning one that accelerates your working efficiency with the aid of hotkeys, various ranges of keywords, text expansion, and much more.

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity
Search and Browse

Alfred comes with multiple features that give an enhanced experience to all its users and eases the process of finding applications and files that have been launched from the web or Store.

Once you are done with setting up the finalized hotkeys and keywords of your choice, you can make your search on your selected websites optimized to a great extent with the help of keywords and hotkeys. With the usage of these keywords, you get to save up a lot of time that might otherwise get wasted typing the same words over and over again. 

This software comes with a Clipboard History and Snippets feature that makes locating any sort of text, image, or file that has been copied previously much simple and lets you paste it again.

You could even create your own snippets and make short abbreviations ready to expand them automatically into a full-text one, thus saving yourself up a lot of time.

Well, working on heavy schedules can be a real hectic journey and thus, Alfred gives you the opportunity to turn your iPad or iPhone into a command center for your Mac. Alfred shares a deep integration with macOS and thus lets the users perform actions on files and contacts or even play a music player when required. 

On Alfred, you get to adjust the workflows in order to make the repetitive tasks automatic and make the function of the features modified even more. 

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity
Extend and Automate

Well, many more features like performing quick calculations of your math problems and copying the result of the same to the clipboard, tapping the ‘Shift’ key to get a preview of the content of a file (without actually having to open it), popping up of a phone number as a large text on your screen, etc. are feasible with Alfred software.

Alfred is a software designed for macOS and Apple users that can initially be availed with a free trial, after which you have to pay a minimum amount for accessing the premium version of the software.

The several features that this app comes with can hardly beat any other and will serve you with great excellence and efficiency.

3. LaunchBar

LaunchBar can be considered as one of the most efficient alternatives to Spotlight that helps you immensely in keeping your daily activities on track and ensuring quicker actions and functionalities. 

Like Alfred, LaunchBar is also capable of managing your events and setting up reminders, accessing contacts for better usability, and working towards bringing an optimized search experience for you.

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

Well, its intuitive UI attracts the eye of all the users, and the software also has in-store emojis, Safari-iCloud Tabs, Finder Tags, Reminder Lists, Safari-Reading Lists, and many more for delivering a better user experience all throughout.

One could easily navigate through an item’s metadata, viz. color profiles, image dimensions, Finder tags, viewing of the latest documents and other related files, disk capacity, keeping a record of word counts, and more.

One of the most amusing features is the live suggestions that you could get during your search on Google, Wikipedia, or DuckDuckGo. Many other actions like Calculator or Calendar input comes with providing instant feedback for the query that has been registered.

Your experience on LaunchBar doesn’t count when the Usage Statistics are calculated here. With Usage Statistics, you can get the correct insight into your daily access to the numerous features out there.

You can even convert the selected portion of the text to uppercase, title case, kebab case, and many more. Integrating LaunchBar with Shortcuts, Services, and Automator is also possible here. 

Apart from the various features that we have mentioned in the above section, you can get your hands on many other features as well.

It is an extremely simplified platform for all macOS users that lets you get access to an initial free trial, after which you have to pay a premium fee of $33 for continuing further. 

SCOM1119 - What's New in LaunchBar - Preview

4. Raycast

Another alternative that we could really take into consideration is Raycast. This can be considered as software that is quite similar in its functionalities to Alfred. It is a free application launcher for your Mac device that is lightweight and snappy in comparison to Alfred and Spotlight. 

For keeping a check on your day-to-day activities, you could easily type out “my schedule” and get the desired results.

Furthermore, Raycast lets its users block focus time and lets you join in conference calls through the application that you would prefer. Making to-do lists and setting up reminders can also let you have an overview of the tasks you need to work upon. 

Through Raycast, you can take control of your Spotify or Apple Music accounts with the facility of just one hit through a button.

Playing the snake game or keeping an eye on the weather and your internet connection speed has also been really easy and can be facilitated with a click or two.

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

You could even create your extensions with the help of Raycast API and even post them directly to the Raycast Store without a hitch.

Since it is an open-source community, you can easily communicate and connect with other developers and their extensions. This way you could cheer up each other to strive towards more and do better.

Floating notes is yet another fascinating feature that intrigues and aids a lot of users in taking down random notes, whenever necessary. You could open links in the browser or folders or on any text editor and make searching more efficient.

Besides these features, there are plenty of features that this software comes with which will benefit you manifold times. Raycast is a completely free platform and its uncountable features are obviously a cherry on the top for all its users.

Raycast for Mac [Sponsored]

5. HoudahSpot

HoudahSpot is one such software that is worth mentioning when one talks about the Spotlight alternatives.

This application lets you search for files by filtering through categories like name, text, author, file extension, recipient, etc. Customizing columns and setting up templates for repetitive searches are also feasible through HoudahSpot. 

On this software, you get to view the preview of various files and images with the help of the Info pane that displays the file properties and other metadata as well.

Best Spotlight Alternatives 6

HoudahSpot also lets you ‘fold’ the preview and displays only certain highlighted matches. This lessens your work and gets it done without consuming much of your time. 

Through this software, it gets extremely convenient for a user to look for files that share common characteristics. HoudahSpot amalgamates with utmost perfection with other software like LaunchBar, PopClip, and Alfred through the URL facilities.

With HoudahSpot, you could find files that might otherwise be somewhat complex to look for. Such files can be the emails regarding the resume or CV that you have received in one complete year or image files that can be as wide as 512 pixels or files created, modified, or opened in the past 7 days, etc. 

Well, you can make your search experience way better by adding various criteria to make the search even more precise and to the point. Usage of ‘*’ as a wildcard for partial matches is also doable.

Thus, you can easily get going with the application by initially trying out a free trial and then can purchase it for $40 from the Mac store for your device.

6. Curiosity

The last one on our list of the best Spotlight alternatives is Curiosity. Well, it does serve the purpose of finding things on your system much easier through a simple search but there is a lot more this tool offers.

The best part is that it is platform-independent, meaning you can use it on your Mac, Windows, or even Linux operating system. It is free of cost and connects dozens of apps on your system.

This simple tool has a much more complex backend that carries all your emails, calendars, cloud storage, files, and much more in a single place.

7 Best Spotlight Alternatives For Supercharged Productivity

You do not need to open any other apps such as Gmail, Calendar, download, or set on your system every time you are looking for a file. Rather simply, use a simple shortcut Alt + Space, to open the tool and type in what you looking for.

An important update on this tool brings to you the power of Indexing. Curiosity allows you to schedule indexing for your apps. Not only this, you can even check out which apps are currently being indexed, provide a grid view for the images, previews in the command bar, and a lot more.

CURIOSITY is an IMPROVED search system for Mac, Windows and Linux.


Spotlight alternatives are really a wonder, with Spotlight being one of the best, undoubtedly. If you didn’t use such an application before, it will be hard for you to have an idea of its miraculous power.

We recommend you choose the best one that would suit you and give it a try if you need it. We are sure you won’t regret this decision even a bit!