In a recent MPU episode, I learned about HoudahSpot and have been testing it - I’m really impressed because it seems to find everything more easily and more quickly than Spotlight/Siri and Alfred, which I use a lot.
First question: why is this so? Is there something I need to set in Alfred that would make it behave more like HoudahSpot?
And second, is there anything I need to worry about in terms of these third-party apps that get to look inside all my files?
As far as I understand HoudahSpot it is basically a more sophisticated interface to Apple’s Spotlight search index.
Regarding privacy you need to trust apps that require full disk access in the security settings - like HoudahSpot. Bottom line, if you don’t trust the vendor, don’t use their apps.
There are some apps - e.g. “Little Snitch” - that are able to monitor outgoing network traffic, if you want more control over the network activity of your apps.
Both Alfred and HS rely on Spotlight for indexing. Alfred is generally better as a launcher and/or with constrained searches & specific targeted workflows than as a general Spotlight replacement. I use both constantly for different purposes.
I also use both. I use Houdaspot (and have for a long time) as my Search program. Alfred does several things for me but is primarily my launch engine. I keep wanting to use Alfred for more – it is really powerful – but I just never get it worked into my day to day workflow. But Houdaspot is the only thing I use when I need to search.
Little Snitch has never given me any warnings about either Alfred or HoudahSpot. I use both regularly, religiously. Alfred is my app launcher and simple Spotlight search app (I removed Spotlight’s ability to be triggered with Command-Space, and gave that combo to Alfred), and HoudahSpot is what I use for sophisticated searches.
Thanks Everyone! This was really informative and helpful.