People Search in SharePoint 2013

People Search

In this article we can explore People Search and how to configure it for a SharePoint 2013 Search.

What People Search is

A People Search is the ability to search for people by their name and conversations. A People Search is done by clicking the People vertical in the Enterprise Search center.

For example: You can search using an existing Employee Name of your SharePoint site.

Is People Search enabled by default?

In the default configuration it is not enabled. We need to do additional configuration to set up a people search.

Before Configuration

The following is the situation before the People Search Configuration.

No result is yielded when searching by name, even though the user created a document.


Configuration for People Search

The following are the configuration items for a People Search:
  1. Create My Site
  2. Create Content Source
  3. Full Crawl


The following service applications should be running:

  • Search Service Application
  • Managed Metadata Service Application
  • User Profile Service Application


The following are the configuration items for a People Search.

Step 1: Create My Site

Open Central Administration then select Manage Service Applications -> User Profile Service Application -> Setup My Sites.

Setup My Sites option

In the page that appears, enter the Search Center URL and click the Ok button.

Step 2: Create Content Source

Now we need to create a New Content Source for People Search. Open Central Administration then select Manage Service Applications -> Search Service Application -> Content Sources link -> New Content Source.
New Content Source

Enter the following details:
  1. Name as People Search
  2. Address as sps3://my-site-url
  3. Only crawl the Site Collection of each start address
  4. Save the changes


If you receive an error saying the URL is already part of another content source then do the following:
  1. Stop all crawls
  2. Open Local SharePoint Sites content source
  3. Remove sps3:// URL from there
  4. Save changes
  5. Try creating the People Search content source again


The SPS3:// specifies the Protocol as SharePoint People Search. If you are using https, then choose sps3s. In the remaining part, you need to enter the My Site URL obtained from the previous step.

Step 3: Perform Full Crawl

Now perform a full crawl for the content source.
crawl for the content source

Wait for few minutes for the crawl to be completed.

Step 4: Test People Search

Back in the SharePoint Search user interface; try searching using a valid user name. You should see the results in the Everything and People vertical.
People Search

This confirms that our People Search configuration was successful.

You need to have User Profile Synchronization running to search by a user name. Please refer to the References section for more information.


Deploy people search in SharePoint Server 2013


In this article we explored People Search configuration for SharePoint 2013.