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It's really quite incredible how bad Windows 7's search seems to be. The latest problem I have with it is that I want to search for filenames including the string "user", so I go to the directory I want to search in (C:\Users\jez\testing), type *user* in the search box, and hit enter. It gives me... every single file. Because "user" is in the path of every file, with everything being under "C:\Users..."

OK, this is useless. Is there a way to just search for the string within files rather than their paths, or do I need to download some decent 3rd party search software?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

To search only filenames, prepend name: to your search. For example, your search would become

name: *user*.

More on Advanced Query Syntax operators that you can use in Windows 7 Search

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I just went to C:\Users\<User Name>\Downloads (which contains ~1000 files right now, but none with the string "user" in their name), typed *user* in the search field and it returned 0 results (just * of course displayed all files/folders). I'm not sure what's up with your system (I'm using Win7 Ultimate x64), but on mine it seems to be searching the actual names by default instead of the entire path. – Karan Sep 18 '12 at 21:17
Hm, that's odd. Mine searches the path. I've only got Home Premium installed right now. I should probably figure out what I did with my Ultimate. – SaintWacko Sep 18 '12 at 22:49
Maybe there's a setting for this hidden somewhere? Will have to look into it further... (Note that the folder I'm searching is not indexed.) – Karan Sep 18 '12 at 22:53

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