I am using SharePoint Online. I added a new user into the Site but the search results doesn't seem to display old documents / list items.

I tried adding new items / updating old items. Both scenarios show up in search results for the new user.

It seems only documents / list items that get added / updated after the new user was added show up for the new user.

However, I tried logging in as an old user and can see proper search results for documents.

I already tried Re-Indexing Site and testing again after 24 hours but the same result still happens.

Is this intended behavior or is there something else I should do?

Thank you

2 Answers 2


That sounds a lot like an permissions related issue, most likely some of the libraries, folders and files might have unique permissions. Have you verified that it is not the case?

  • Hi Kasper, yes I verified it. I can navigate to the library and see the actual page. Re-indexing the library works and user can see the document, but its not ideal that I need to re-index the library every time a new user is added.
    – Water
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 14:04
  • 1
    Based on your findings I'll say that it sounds very much like there is an issue with the indexing on the tenant. I guess the best approach will be to raise a service request with Microsoft Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 17:15
  • Thanks Kasper. We did some more tests and it seems the items gets crawled without reindexing, but only after 2 days. Will confirm with Microsoft if it really takes that long to do the crawling.
    – Water
    Commented Nov 30, 2018 at 17:14

For troubleshooting this issue, let's verify the followings:

  1. Does all new users have this issue? or just one new user?

  2. Could the new user directly access the old documents\items in the libraries\lists without search? Please have a try and compare the result.

  3. Please check if you have enabled Content approval or Versioning for these libraries\lists.

  4. And also check the user's permissions on these documents and items, make sure the new user has at least Read permissions on them.

  • Hi Lisa, for # 1, just new users. For #2, yes can directly access by going to the library. #3 : It is enabled, but documents are already published as Major Version. #4, yes new user has Read Permissions. Re-indexing the library works but this is not ideal as it would mean to re-index the library every time a new user is created?
    – Water
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 14:06

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