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I need to find some text in a ton of log files that are stored on my network (I don't have them indexed).

The files all have a more or less unique extension. (i.e., they look like this: MyLogFile.txt_100901181706 the numbers are a date/time stamp.)

I have Windows 7 or else this would be easy. XP supported searching in files much easier that windows 7 does. I tried to do it in Windows 7 and it had to be setup on each extension one-by-one for all of the extensions. Because I have a non-standard extension, it would not help me anyway.

I need a tool that can do a recursive search for text within files starting in a given directory. I would like it to have some kind of GUI if possible (I am not big into command line tools.)

Thanks for any help

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closed as off-topic by DavidPostill, Nifle, Kevin Panko, Matthew Williams, BenjiWiebe Jan 6 '15 at 20:17

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up vote 10 down vote accepted

Notepad++ will do this. Plus it's awesome. And it's free. It will list all the files it finds the text in, with previews so you don't have to open each file to check if it's the one you're actually after.

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Yeah it sure is awesome – Ravisha Oct 27 '11 at 12:47
+1 for the obvious that I missed... – RLH Oct 2 '12 at 15:09

Take a look at grepwin, it is very flexible and also supports regular expressions.

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You can narrow down the filetypes it looks in further with the "Files with match:" box. There you can use a combination such as MyLogFile.txt_*.

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LAN Search Pro can do this as well.

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Agent Ransack works well for me. It shows a preview of the file where the text was found.

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Google Desktop will do this, too - so long as the network drives are mapped.

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