Search in SharePoint Online is composed of two main components: Crawl and Indexer. The crawl and indexer are shared resources and will process content for all tenants it has been configured to crawl and index. In support we often receive questions asking, "Why is there such a variance in the time it takes for item/site changes to be reflected in search? Sometimes it is very quick and other times it is extremely slow." The reason for the fluctuation in time taken is that both the crawl and indexer process content updates, adds, and deletes for all tenants in the farm and not just one tenant. The crawl and indexer have work queues that are used to process their work items. The following provides more information on purpose of the crawl and indexer: crawl and indexer:
All new and updated content is generally processed by the continuous crawl. As the continuous crawl runs every 15-minutes, and it works through its queue, most content is indexed within 20-60 minutes. If the continuous crawl encounters errors while processing content, that content will be marked for re-crawl by the next incremental crawl. Note: User Profiles are always processed via an incremental crawl.
The following steps are a good starting point to investigate search issues prior to opening a support case.
SharePoint Online does not provide a real-time dashboard for monitoring the status of the crawler or indexer. Each crawl and indexing job will take a varying amount of time.
We recommend opening a support case if content is not being reflected as expected in search within 24 hours. We understand that certain scenarios have a higher impact to your business (high visibility, project deadline, etc.) and require a better understanding of what is occurring, so please do not hesitate to engage support. When you engage support please provide the following:
If you have any feedback or suggestions for search, please submit those suggestions to https://sharepoint.uservoice.com/. The Product Group checks the requests and feedback on a regular basis and uses this feedback for new features and enhancements to the product.
Authors: Sridhar Narra [MSFT], Tania Menice [MSFT], Yachiyo Jeska [MSFT]
Contributors: Paul Haskew[MSFT], Steffi Buchner [MSFT], Tony Radermacher [MSFT]
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