Baloo is the file indexing and file search framework for KDE Plasma. It focuses on speed and a very small memory footprint. It maintains an index of your files and optionally their contents which you can search.


Baloo is part of the KDE umbrella and relies on the KDE infrastructure.

Mailing List: (info page) Bug Tracker: (new bug) IRC Channel: #kde-baloo on Libera Chat

The recommended way of contributing patches is via KDE's GitLab instance.



File Indexing Plugins

Baloo relies on KFileMetaData to extract content and metadata from files. KFileMetadata uses a number file type specific plugins. In case individual plugins are packaged separately, we recommend installing all plugins.

Without the indexer plugins, Baloo cannot function to its full potential.


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Baloo is developed and tested exclusively for Linux. While it may run on other unix based systems. It is not recommended, and certainly not tested.

We do not recommend to package Baloo for Windows or OSX as both these operating systems offer their own file searching solutions which better integrate with the native system than Baloo ever will.

Baloo may run on 32-bit systems, but it has not been tested and may not work correctly. Please test and let us know by filing a bug.

Supported Kernels: Linux Supported Architectures: x86_64, aarch64 Supported Filesystems: ext3/4, Btrfs, XFS

Packaging the indexer service

The service is an autostarted, session wide background service. In case KF5 and KF6 versions of the Baloo libraries are installed, both will use the same service and database.

Only one version of the service autostart file and associated binaries should be installed at a time, i.e. the baloo_file.desktop service definition, the baloo_file service binary, the baloo_file_extractor helper, and the balooctl tool.

Building of the service can be disabled using the BUILD_INDEXER_SERVICE CMake option.