Jarvis review: Bringing Mac-style searching to Windows 10

Windows search can be finicky at times. Instead, you can look towards a new era third-party app, Jarvis. It's a universal system search that lets you find files, apps, and search the web. It's inspired by Spotlight search on Mac, but brings that functionality to Windows 10.

It's available for free from Github. The app is in preview so you can expect some bugs and missing features, though in my testing I was impressed with it.

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Universal search

Jarvis works with Win32 and UWP apps and also allows you to easily find files on your PC. By default, Jarvis only indexes a small set of folders on your PC, but you can tell it to index any part of your system to enable quick searching.

To open up Jarvis you press Alt+Tab. You'll see the white search box that will look very familiar if you've used Spotlight on a Mac before. In my testing, search results showed up quickly and any file or program I searched for appeared instantly.

It does a good job of showing results from anywhere that you've given it access to index and it does a good job of emulating Spotlight search on Mac.

Is it needed?

A question that pops to mind when looking at Jarvis is if it's really needed. Windows 10 already has a universal search function that can locate files and apps. While this feature does exist, I believe there either needs to be a significant upgrade with Windows 10's searching ability or a program like Jarvis to fill the gap.

While I've personally not had too many issues with Cortana when it comes to searching my PC, there are way too many examples of the feature failing to think there isn't room for improvement. At times, Cortana only finds things if you type the exact name you're looking for, but at other times it only shows the right result when you've typed a few letters of it because the right result gets overwritten by something else when you type a full word.

The fact that we have an entire guide to fix taskbar search issues should be all the evidence needed to show that Jarvis has a role on Windows 10.

Overall thoughts on Jarvis

Jarvis brings a simple search feature that's a fan-favorite on Macs to Windows 10. It pops up using an easy keyboard shortcut and searches through apps and files well. The app is only in preview so I won't give it a rating, but I'm extremely impressed with it. If you're looking for a way to Mac-ify your PC for searching your computer, Jarvis is the way to go.

As development continues, I'd like to see some more customization options for the UI. There are people who are unhappy with Windows search that I would think would enjoy Jarvis, but they might want it to fit in more when it comes to Windows 10's design language.

Overall, it's an impressive app that I recommend trying, especially since it's free.

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Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com.