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I've set the index options for the .SQL extension to use "Plain Text filter" with "Index Properties and File Contents" selected, and ensure that the directories containing the SQL files are in the "Included Locations".

Unfortunately, Windows desktop search still fails to find anything in the .SQL files. Other file types such as .cs, .docx etc are searched successfully.

I'm running Windows XP SP2 - and it's a work machine where I can't easily install alternative search engines so I'm stuck with Windows Desktop search for indexed searching.

Obviously I can search the .SQL files using other (non-indexed) techniques, but I prefer the speed of Desktop Search - if I could get it to work.

Update: Having copied a couple of .SQL files to .SQL.TXT files in the same directory as suggested by ~quack, added .SQL.TXT as a file extension to the indexing options (using the plain text filter, with "Index Properties and File Contents" selected) and re-indexing, Desktop Search still fails to find strings in either the .SQL or .SQL.TXT files.

Additional info: after re-indexing, I checked the file types in the Desktop Search advanced options and noted that the .SQL.TXT file extension no longer appears in the list of file types.

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See also superuser.com/questions/84744/… –  RJFalconer Dec 31 '09 at 13:36

4 Answers 4

Just use Qytec's free Portable File Seeker instead of Windows Desktop Search. It can successfully search within files with provided extensions. You don't need to install it since it's portable. I tried it on my .SQL files and it works without any problems. Here is a screeny from my PC:

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Sorry - I should have been clearer regarding installation of other search engines: as it's a work machine I can't USE anything other than the tools already provided on the machine. –  Dan Blanchard Dec 2 '09 at 14:14
    
So good luck with WDS. –  Mehper C. Palavuzlar Dec 2 '09 at 14:30

There are two approaches listed on this page: Link

or just Google the Windows Registry key used to specify additional Windows search keys and you will see lots of sites discussing this issue: {5e941d80-bf96-11cd-b579-08002b30bfeb}

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I think (but I'm not sure) you'll need to install an iFilter for SQL into the Windows Desktop Search engine. Take a look here.

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Thanks, but there's no iFilter specific to SQL files - and to be honest I wouldn't expect to find one, as .SQL files are plain text files. –  Dan Blanchard Dec 2 '09 at 14:15

This would obviously be suboptimal, but have you tried copying the .SQL files to .TXT files?

I don't mean simply rename, since you are presumably using the SQL files as SQL files somewhere. But if you have the space, make copies and rename those to .SQL.TXT or so. If your SQL files change frequently, schedule a task to re-create the copies.

This would be worthwhile as an experiment -- if Windows Desktop Search can successfully index a .SQL.TXT file, there's something about the .SQL extension that it's failing on. If it can't, something about the file's format is confusing it.

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That's a good idea - I'll try a copying just a couple of files to .SQL.TXT and see if Desktop Search finds things within them... –  Dan Blanchard Dec 2 '09 at 14:17
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Interesting: having copied a couple of .SQL files into .SQL.TXT file AND rebuilt the indices, Desktop Search STILL fails to find strings within these files. As a desperate measure, I've added .SQL.TXT as a file extension to the indexing options - now I have to wait a few more hours to re-index... –  Dan Blanchard Dec 2 '09 at 23:28

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