Windows Search is the functionality built into the Windows OS for finding files, folders and programs on a PC or in connected storage.

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214
votes
10answers
19k views

Why is Google so much faster than a hard-drive search?

When I search a file on my HD in Windows 7 or Windows XP it takes some minutes to finish the process. If I fill in a search term in Google, the answer is on my screen in milliseconds How is it ...
178
votes
13answers
536k views

How to search inside files on Windows 7?

In Windows XP we can search for files that contain a defined keyword (inside all files types). Windows 7 can look inside files for a keyword, but only for text files. (*.doc, *.txt, *.inf, ...), not ...
33
votes
5answers
129k views

Correct way to disable indexing in Windows 7

What's the best way to disable indexing in Windows 7? All of the articles that I've found online instruct me to access services.msc and disable the Windows Search service. However, even after I did ...
32
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a way to show all Windows 8 Modern UI search results on one page?

There are three search tabs: Apps, Settings, Files. I currently have to mouse click or navigate down to reach Settings and Files, as Apps is searched by default. Is there a way to get all search ...
30
votes
18answers
12k views

What search utilities can search by file name in Windows 7?

I've just installed Windows 7 64-bit and have found that it's file search really really sucks. What is a good alternative that I can load on my system to do file searching? Note: I don't care about ...
26
votes
7answers
6k views

Automatically Disable Windows 7 From Indexing .svn metadata

There is a known issue with SVN repositories and the windows indexing service fighting over .svn metadata files. Here for more details. How can we set it up so there are automatically no problems ...
24
votes
4answers
25k views

How to search for folders only in Windows 7, instead of folders AND files

I've had some issues with the new search function in Windows 7. The Search in Windows XP was packed with so many more options. The only options I can access now, is 'Date Modified' and 'Size'. Any ...
17
votes
4answers
14k views

How to search inside PDFs with Windows Search?

I'd like to use Windows Search for searching through multiple PDFs in one go, but I see that in the Indexing Options' Advanced Options screen, PDF files don't have a registered IFilter: What is an ...
16
votes
7answers
12k views

How to search for a folder from the Windows 8 Start screen

In Windows 7, if you press the Windows key and type the name of a folder, and the folder shows up among the Start menu search results. In Windows 8, if you do the same thing, no folders are listed. ...
15
votes
4answers
12k views

Windows 8.1 search charm slow, with explorer.exe CPU usage at 100%

Since upgrading to Windows 8.1 this weekend, the Search feature became pretty useless. When I start typing, it sends my CPU usage to 100% (Task Manager shows Windows Explorer as the main offender), ...
12
votes
5answers
23k views

Can I force full speed to the indexing service of Windows?

On windows 7 there's 'pause' and there's 'indexing speed is reduced due to user activity' but what if one wants full speed during desktop activity?
12
votes
2answers
38k views

can I use CMD to search for files in windows?

I want a command to search for a file in a directory and all sub directories in windows, I saw all the Commands but I couldn't find any command to do this issue!
11
votes
6answers
13k views

Windows 7: Search indexing is stuck

When I open Indexing Options, it says: 4,317 items indexed Indexing in progress. Search results might not be complete during this time. It's stuck at 4,317 though; no more items have been ...
11
votes
1answer
901 views

Why does Windows 8 application search no longer match substrings?

When I first installed Windows 8, I could start an app by hitting the Windows key once to bring up the Start screen, and then typing a substring of the app's name. At some point since then, the ...
10
votes
4answers
19k views

Windows 7 Index Search does not work in Google Drive folder

I recently installed Google Drive on my Windows 7 laptop and began syncing all my files a few days ago. All was well until I needed to search for some documents in my local copy of Google Drive using ...
10
votes
6answers
10k views

Trouble trying to use Windows Search to search for file with a question mark in the content

It seems that Windows Search is having trouble when I specify a question mark character as the content that I'm searching for within my files. I've tried: content:? content:"?" content:"\?" ...
10
votes
2answers
648 views

Can I change the order of the search results in the Windows 7 start menu?

Is it possible to change the sort order of the search results in the Windows 7 start menu? I'd like to either have them completely unsorted by the type of result they are or have files appear before ...
9
votes
2answers
7k views

What adjustments should be done for a SSD?

I have recently upgraded my desktop PC and installed a SSD as system drive. I read somewhere that these drives "don't like" being written on too much and that one needs to enable/disable certain OS ...
8
votes
1answer
880 views

How can I change the default filter Windows is using for indexing file contents?

In windows every file type is indexed using specific filters. Windows give an oportunity to change between two options for each file type in Indexing Options > Advanced > File Types: Index ...
7
votes
7answers
5k views

Windows Search Not Indexing Contents of Text Files With .SQL Extension

I'm having trouble getting Windows Search to index the contents of a text file that have a .sql extension. Is there something I'm doing wrong? Background: I use a program at work called Navicat ...
7
votes
1answer
5k views

Start Menu search is very slow in Windows 8.1

Not sure what is causing this and was wondering if anyone else had this problem with any way to fix it? It takes about 2-5 seconds after hitting the windows key and starting to type for the search bar ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

Command line tool to search phrases in large number of pdf files

I'm using Opensuse 10.3 and like to know command line tools to search phrases in large number of pdf files inside a directory. In Windows XP the Explorer search allows this but is too slow. Is there ...
7
votes
2answers
6k views

Advanced search in windows 7 for only folder names

My folder structure is like this: 70-515\Chapter01\Lesson1-Exercise1-Completed-CS 70-515\Chapter01\Lesson1-Exercise1-Completed-VB I want to search and delete all VB folders(including files inside ...
7
votes
2answers
972 views

Search for files after a relative date using Windows search

I am looking for a way to save a search that includes a relative date. Specifically I am looking for a way to save a search that matches files that have a modification date that is 7 days ago. I ...
7
votes
2answers
936 views

Windows 8 disable network locations from search

Using webdrive to mount external SSH/SFTP points, whenever I do a search using File Explorer / Search on Computer, explorer starts to scan these drives as well. Since I have a full ubuntu server ...
6
votes
3answers
671 views

Is it just me or does Windows 7 index-based searching still not work as well as Agent Ransack?

It really seems that this is the case....am I wrong? Or an I not understanding something about Windows 7 search and just don't know how to properly use it? And as far as I can tell Agent Ransack ...
6
votes
3answers
9k views

How can I force Windows 7 to REindex a folder?

I asked Windows 7 to index my entire "Media" folder. After it was done it'd find anything in there, no problem. Then I reorganized it a bit and moved some folders around, and now it doesn't find ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How to view full path in search results?

I really hate the way Search Results works in Windows 7. You get something like this: ...and, wanting to see the full path (why doesn't it show you that automaticlly, either by making that column ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

Exclude directories from Windows Search by wildcard

Search Indexing is interfering with our build process, and I would like to exclude all instances of our dev directories from the indexer (we have a trunk and branches setup). I could exclude the whole ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Find all videos less than x seconds in length

I have a directory (F:\video) with many subdirectories containing various .mp4 videos. Is there any way I can get a list of all the videos less than 15 seconds long? Preferably using the standard ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Can I do a “one-time” file content search in Windows Server 2008 without adding the folder to the index?

Can I search for files which contain a specific string in a folder if that folder is not in the search index? So, lets say folder 'textFiles' is not in the index. I navigate to this folder in Windows ...
6
votes
1answer
694 views

Encrypting search index using EFS

Is there anything wrong with encrypting the search index with EFS while letting the search service index encrypted files? I've encrypted the directory %ProgramData%\Microsoft\Search and I've added ...
5
votes
5answers
6k views

Windows indexing service: how do I make it so network shares can be searched?

I have a bunch of folders on a network share with thousands of files in them (application logfiles). I would like to be able to search these by filename quickly and eventually programmatically ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

How to find video files with a certain framewidth

I have the following problem: a large collection of video files of all sorts of formats with very different framewidths and frameheights on several hard drives. I want to search for all video files ...
5
votes
2answers
174 views

Can't search by dollar amounts that are in filename

I have a bunch of PDF documents in a network folder that follow a similar file name structure: CompanyName - $160.99.pdf When I open the folder containing all the documents in Windows 7, I can ...
5
votes
3answers
237 views

Add an app to the Windows 8 app menu

If you go to start, then search in Windows 8, you see a list of applications (both desktop and Metro). Many of the (desktop) applications I have running on my PC are not listed here however, because ...
5
votes
1answer
196 views

Is it possible to remove an app's results from Modern UI search on the start screen?

How can I remove all search items (for example emails) from a particular pre-installed Modern UI app when searching by typing on the start screen?
5
votes
2answers
430 views

Can I make Windows 7 Start Menu search show items in order of most frequently used?

I work as a web applications developer; during the course of a day I open applications a lot. The search box in the start menu that appeared in Vista & 7 has been a godsend. Hit the start key, ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Force Windows 8 to search indexed files

When using search files in Windows 8 (win+f) I don't get expected results. For example, I installed VLC, it's in Program Files (86) folder, and that folder is selected for indexing. Search for files ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

Windows XP classic search functionality in Windows 7?

There's a critical regression between the way Windows XP and Windows 7 perform filename searches. In XP, the default is that the entire filename would be searched as a string using using a ...
4
votes
5answers
756 views

Free Tool to search IN files (even over a network)

I need to find some text in a ton of log files that are stored on my network (I doubt have them indexed). The files all have a more or less unique extension. (Ie they look like this: ...
4
votes
1answer
94 views

On Windows 7, how can I make the Start Menu search feature include matches from within words, not just the start of the word?

I have a program installed called WinSCP. When I press the Windows key and type "SCP", I get "No items match your search." Is there a configuration option I can set somewhere, so that this item will ...
4
votes
5answers
12k views

Index a low-cost NAS on Windows 7

Has anyone found a way to index the files stored on a Networked Attached Storage on Windows 7 so that the files can be available in Windows Search and Libraries? I am referring to the cheap and ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Searching for Extensionless Files in Windows 7

I cannot for the life of me figure out a way to have Windows 7 Explorer search for files with no extension. In XP it was nice and simple: just search for files named *. but in 7, that does not work ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Searching network drive without indexing - win xp

I believe someone else asked that question in relation to Windows 7 but if I want to search a network drive in Win XP, is there a way to do it without the need to index the files?
4
votes
1answer
910 views

How can I add my Firefox and Chrome history to Windows Search

How can I add my browsing history to Windows Search (in Windows 7)? Internet Explorer History is included by default, but I use Firefox or Chrome. EDIT: If there's no way to do this yet, it ...
4
votes
2answers
270 views

Bug?: Windows Explorer search file extension aware

Can someone explain why I cannot find files with certain file extensions? The repro steps are below. Create Folder. Create TXT file with the following text. <root /> Use Windows Explorer to ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Windows desktop search fails to search inside .SQL files

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 ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Search behavior of Windows 7 start menu

I'm coming to Windows 7 from Windows XP, and there are aspects of the start menu search that I like. However, there are some behaviors that seem either inconsistent or surprising to me. For ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How to easily use Windows 7 search advanced options?

Is there an alternative to trying to remember all the advanced search options? Like an actual GUI as we had for windows XP? As powerful as Windows Search apparently is, I cannot possibly remember all ...