How to Configure People Search in SharePoint 2013

In this article we learn about how to configure People Search in SharePoint 2013.

In this article we learn about how to configure People Search in SharePoint 2013. The Enterprise Search Center in SharePoint 2013 searches nearly everything SharePoint crawls. That is the reason why its search results are labeled "Everything". But for specialized data or scenarios, we often want a specialized search experience to match. For example, "People" takes you to People Search, that returns only people results, displays them differently, and responds intelligently to certain people-related queries such as searches for a phone number.

People Search has the following prerequisites:

  1. A search service application must be running in the farm. For more information, see "Create and configure a Search service application in SharePoint Server 2013". The farm must also have a Search Center that uses the Enterprise Search Center template. For more information, see: Create a Search Center site in SharePoint Server 2013.
  2. A Managed Metadata service application must be running in the farm.
  3. User profile synchronization must be configured in the farm. Please follow my article: Configure User Profile Service and My Site in SharePoint 2013: Part I and II
  4. Configure My site

Configure crawling

When you configure "My Sites", the default content access account for the search is automatically given "Retrieve People Data for Search Crawlers" permissions in the User Profile service application. If you want to use a different content access account to crawl the profile store, you must make sure that the account has permissions to crawl the profile store. Use the following procedure to grant access to the profile store for a different account.

To grant access to an account to crawl the profile store:

  1. Verify that the user account that is performing this procedure is an administrator for the Search service application.
  2. Start SharePoint 2013 Central Administration.
     
  3. In Central Administration, in the "Application Management" section, click "Manage service applications".

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  4. On the "Manage Service Applications" page, click the row that contains the User Profile service application, and then in the ribbon, click Administrators.
  5. In the "Administrators for User Profile Service Application" dialog box, in the "To add an account" box, type a user account in the form domain\user name.

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  6. Click "Add".
  7. In the Permissions list, select the "Retrieve People Data for Search Crawlers" check box.
  8. Click "OK".

After you give the account access to crawl the profile store, you must create a crawl rule to specify that you want to use that account when you crawl the profile store. Use the following procedure to create a crawl rule for this purpose.

Create a crawl rule to authenticate to the User Profile service application

  1. Verify that the user account that is performing this procedure is an administrator for the Search service application.
  2. In Central Administration, in the "Application Management" section, click "Manage service applications".

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  3. On the "Manage Service Applications" page, click the Search service application for which you want to create a crawl rule.

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  4. On the "Search Administration" page, in the Quick Launch, in the Crawling section, click "Crawl Rules".

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  5. On the "Manage Crawl Rules" page, click "New Crawl Rule".

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  6. In the Path section, in the Path box, type the start address for the User Profile service application in the form sps3://<hostname>, where <hostname> is the URL for the Web application where you deployed the My Sites site collection.

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  7. Click "Use regular expression syntax for matching this rule" if you want to use regular expression syntax in the path.
  8. In the Crawl Configuration section, select "include all items in this path".
  9. In the "Specify Authentication" section, select "Specify a different content access account".
  10. In the Account box that appears, type the user account to which you gave access to the profile store in the form domain\user name.
  11. Type the password for the account that you specified in the "Password and Confirm Password" boxes.
  12. Clear the "Do not allow Basic Authentication" check box only if you want to allow the user account credentials to be sent as plaintext.
  13. Click "OK".

Remove the profile store URL from the default content source

  1. Verify that the user account that is performing this procedure is an administrator for the Search service application.
  2. In Central Administration, in the "Application Management" section, click "Manage service applications".
  3. On the "Manage Service Applications" page, click "Search Service Application".

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  4. On the Search Administration page, in the Quick Launch, in the Crawling section, click "Content Sources".

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  5. On the "Manage Content Sources" page, click the link to the default content source (Local SharePoint sites).

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  6. In the "Start Addresses" section, remove the URL for the profile store (sps3://<hostname>, where <hostname> is the URL for the web application where you deployed the My Sites site collection).

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  7. Click "OK".

Create a content source that specifies how to crawl the profile store

  1. Verify that the user account that is performing this procedure is an administrator for the Search service application.
  2. In Central Administration, in the Application Management section, click "Manage service applications".
  3. On the "Manage Service Applications" page, click "Search Service Application".

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  4. On the Search Administration page, in the Quick Launch, in the Crawling section, click "Content Sources".

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  5. On the "Manage Content Sources" page, click "New Content Source".

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  6. On the "Add Content Source" page, in the Name section, type a name for this content source.
     
  7. In the "Content Source Type" section, ensure that "SharePoint Sites" is selected.
  8. In the "Start Addresses" section, type the start address in the form sps3://<hostname>, where <hostname> is the URL for the web application where you deployed the My Sites site collection.

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  9. In the "Crawl Settings" section, leave the default value of Crawl to be everything under the host name for each start address.

    o In the "Crawl Schedules" section, do the following:
    o Select "Enable Continuous Crawls" or "Enable Incremental Crawls".

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  10. If you selected "Enable Incremental Crawls", create an incremental crawl schedule.

    • Optionally create a schedule for full crawls.
     
  11. If you selected "Enable Incremental Crawls", in the "Content Source Priority" section, select the priority for this content source.
  12. Click "OK".
  13. We are now done with the configuration; just search with the name of the person in the search center site and you will get the results.

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