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Excluding Specific Column Metadata from SharePoint Search Index

SharePoint search by default crawls the contents of all site columns so that they are available for search queries. How these columns may be used by search results depends upon the mapping of the crawled properties to Managed Properties and the configuration of the Managed Properties.  I will not go into configuring Managed Properties in this posting.

Entity extraction programs like Smartlogic’s Semaphore Text Mining requires the creation of a Managed Metadata column which uses a MMS term set. All MMS column metadata are identified by search as the ows_taxId_MetadataAllTagsInfo crawled property which is mapped to the owstaxidmetadataalltagsinfo managed property. This managed property is configured as Queryable, Retrievable and Refinable which permits its use in queries, query rules, scopes (SP2010) and in customizing the refinement panel of search results pages.

However, it is also configured to include content from ALL crawled properties.

Since the terms placed in the column and the term store programatically have not been “approved” for use in the taxonomy, you may not want them included as metadata in the search index as they could be confusing for search users particularly as refinement options.

There is an easy solution called Searchable Columns. In SP2010, Searchable Columns link is grouped in Site Settings under Site Administration heading. In SP2013, it is under the Search heading.

Since Searchable Columns only manages columns created at the level where it is accessed, the exclusions must be configured at each Site or Site Collection level.

To keep search from crawling any column, open Searchable Columns in Site Settings and select the appropriate column (in this case, Text Mining) to be excluded from Search Indexing.

If these terms have already been crawled, a Full Crawl will be required to remove them. This blog is also posted in the Life with Semaphore blog site at

About Daniel Webster