SharePoint Server 2016 MySites Preferred Search Center

SharePoint Server 2016 MySites Preferred Search Center is the URL that MySites are supposed to take you to when you want to search across all content. Like previous versions of SharePoint, the User Profile Service Application has an option to set up the Preferred Search Center. Presumably, this is the URL that is used for searching the MySite. When you visit your MySite, there is a search box in the upper left hand corner, and when you start typing in it, you get this option to “Search Everything”.


You would think that the “Search Everything” would point to your Preferred Search Center as setup in the “Setup MySites” within the User Profile Search Application. It doesn’t. Instead, it points to the Global Search Center URL as specified in the Search Service Application. Make sure the Global Search Center URL ends in /pages, otherwise the “Search Everything” feature will not function correctly.


I’m unsure if this is a feature or a bug (I’m leaning towards bug), but just a point of warning that the behavior isn’t as I would personally expect it to be.

Trevor Seward is a Microsoft Office Apps and Services MVP who specializes in SharePoint Server administration, hybrid scenarios, and SharePoint Online. He has been working with SharePoint for 16 years from SharePoint 2003 on up, managing environments with terabytes of content for 150,000+ user organizations. Trevor is an author of Deploying SharePoint 2016 and Deploying SharePoint 2019. You can find him on Twitter and in /r/sharepoint.