Creating and updating full-text indexes for single databases

As you create a full-text index for a database, select indexing options and update frequency options carefully, as they can affect server disk space and processing speed.

About this task

Domino® stores the index file in a subdirectory of the directory where the database file is located, usually the Domino® data directory. The name of this subdirectory is filename.FT, where filename is the file name of the indexed database -- for example, /EMPLOYEE.FT. The full-text directory must reside in the directory in which the corresponding database resides.

Note: When organizing databases on a server, you can store databases outside the Domino® data directory and create links from the data directory to a directory or database outside it.

You must periodically update full-text indexes on servers to keep them synchronized with changes to the databases. When you create an index, you can either accept the default schedule for updating it (nightly at 2 AM) or specify a different schedule. You can modify this setting at any time.

You can also do manual index updates for server databases at any time from the Domino® Administrator.

Note: Users update full-text indexes for local databases whenever they replicate with the server. Users can also do manual index updates for local databases at any time.

To create one or more indexes


  1. From the Domino® Administrator, select the server that stores the database or databases you want to index.
  2. Click the Files tab.
  3. In the Tools pane, make sure that you have at least Designer access in the ACL of any database you want to index.
  4. Select one or more databases to index.
  5. In the Tools pane, choose Database > Full Text Index.
  6. Select Create.
  7. Optional: Select any of the following indexing options (all of which increase index size). Index size is also dependent on the amount of text in the database (non-text elements such as bitmaps, buttons, and agents are not indexed). To check index size after indexing a database, look on the Full Text tab of the Database Properties box.
    Table 1. Indexing options

    Indexing option


    Index attached files

    Indexes attachments. Also choose either With found text to include just the ASCII text of attachments, or With file filters to include the full binary content of attachments. Choosing With found text creates the index faster than choosing With file filters, but is less comprehensive.

    Index encrypted fields

    Indexes text in encrypted fields.

    Selecting this option can compromise system security.

    Index sentence and paragraph breaks

    Includes sentence and paragraph breaks in addition to word breaks to allow users to do proximity searches.

    Enable case sensitive searches

    Allows searches by exact case match. This option increases the size of the index by about 15%, because each word must be indexed twice -- for example, apple and Apple.

    Defer full-text index creation Enabled by default. Keeps the setting for full-text indexing. but does not start index creation. When "Defer full-text index creation" is selected, the Domino server administrator needs to use Updall or DBMT to create/update the full-text index of the selected databases later at their convenience.
    Tip: You can view your indexing selections later on the Search tab of the Database Properties box.
  8. Optional: Change the default setting for index update frequency.
    Table 2. Update frequency options

    Update frequency option

    Updates occur

    Select when

    Daily (the default)

    Nightly when the Updall server program runs at 2 AM.

    Note: To change the time that Updall performs automatic daily index updates, use the ServerTasksAthour setting in the NOTES.INI file.

    The database is very large, because updating a large index can take some time.


    Every hour, as scheduled by the Chronos server task.

    Frequent changes are made to the database contents. If subsequent monitoring of the database and server reveals slow performance of either, change to another frequency setting.


    As soon as possible after you close the database.

    Very frequent changes are made to the database contents. If subsequent monitoring of the database and server reveals slow performance of either, change to another frequency setting.


    As scheduled by a Program document for the Updall server task in the Domino® Directory.

    Note: If you select the Scheduled option, you must set a schedule for Updall in a Program document; otherwise, scheduled updates will not occur.

    None of the update frequency options described here meet your needs.

  9. Click OK.

What to do next

Inform users that the database or databases are indexed.