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I'm using Lotus Notes 8.5.2 in a large corporate deployment. I'm trying to figure out how to search my email in a structured manner, e.g. by specifying criteria on fields.

The help seems to suggest that I can use fields in square brackets and a list of operators, e.g. to find all mail where the From field contains John, I'd search for

/[From] CONTAINS John

However, I can't get this to work - any operator style query I've tried returns zero documents. "Web-style" queries (e.g. typing John into the search dialog) work, but I'd really prefer a way that would let me search more precisely.

Potential issues:

  • I'm assuming that the field names can be taken from the list of things I see when I open a mail and look at its Document Properties.
  • Full text indexing is turned off for my mailbox, and all my attempts to create my own have failed.

Does anyone have better information on searching by from/date/subject conditions in Notes?

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Thanks for posting this question. Here I out about the existence of these fields in the first place :-) –  R. Schreurs Apr 15 '13 at 13:20

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

The important question here is whether the mail file that you are searching has had a full-text index built. When you bring up the search bar (via View menu, 'Search this View'), look at the upper right of your screen. There should be an indicator that says 'Not indexed' (with a yellow light) or 'Indexed' (with a green light).

If it is indexed, then the [From] CONTAINS syntax should work.

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A-ha, that's useful information, thanks. My database is definitely "No t indexed", but I had thought that would make searching just slower, not impossible. –  themel Oct 30 '12 at 13:44
    
Many organizations don't want to dedicate the extra disk space on servers to index their users' email databases, which is a pity. Some will do it if you ask, so perhaps you should put in a request to your help desk. Or, assuming your organization's policy allows it, you can make a local replica of your mail file, which will be on your own computer's hard disk, and then you could create the full text index on the replica. You would have to synch (i.e., 'replicate' in Notes-speak) before searching in order to assure you get the most recent results. –  rhsatrhs Oct 30 '12 at 13:59
    
Thanks... Would you have a link on how to create such a replica? I've read of the possibility in other places, but couldn't find out how to do it. –  themel Oct 30 '12 at 14:00
    
Sure. I'll add a couple of links. –  rhsatrhs Oct 30 '12 at 15:27
    
Here's a YouTube video. It uses the old 'Desktop' style of the Notes UI instead of the more streamlined 'Bookmark' format, and I don't know if you're familiar with that. youtube.com/watch?v=EpleW74dstM –  rhsatrhs Oct 30 '12 at 15:28

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