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Windows 7: Useless search functionality? What am I doing wrong?


29 Oct 2009   #1

Windows 7 x64
 
 
Useless search functionality? What am I doing wrong?

Earlier today I was trying to access a file I need to use for homework (entitled "England's Foreign Policy 1515-1525"). So, rather than navigate through various files and folders, I decided to run a quick search on the start menu. However, to my surprise, any number of combinations (the full title, or just searching for "England"/"foreign"/"policy" etc.) turned up absolutely nothing. So I went into the folder where the file is located, so I could actually see it onscreen, and tried searching its name in the search bar at the top right - guess what, up pops the "No items match your search" text.

I really like Windows 7, it's running great in general for me, but can anyone tell me how to fix this issue? Search function is pretty useless if it doesn't work...


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Oct 2009   #2

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Might need to setup the indexing locations. Start > "index" > Indexing Options. You may also what this: Advanced search techniques - Windows Vista Team Blog - The Windows Blog
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #3

Windows 7 x64
 
 

The entire computer is indexed, so I wouldn't think that is the problem. I'm looking over the link you provided now. Thanks for the help.

EDIT: Bit of an update, from trying out a few searches, it seems that only folders come up in results (not files).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Oct 2009   #4

Windows 7 x64
 
 

From further testing, it appears that this only affects the "Users" folder. I can search with no problams if I move the file to the C drive or program files.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #5

Windows 7 Ult, Windows 8.1 Pro,
 
 

I noticed that also and it seems pretty lame to me. I never understood why file search pretty much does not work in Windows 7.

Folder or files should make no difference, when you type in the entire title of the file the darn thing should show up but it doesn't.

I'm sure there is some lame explanation this, but no matter what the excuse for this behavior it's just not acceptable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #6

Windows 7 x64
 
 

I've virtually fixed it just now by giving system a few more permissions on the Users folder, which seems to have cleared the issue up. Unfortunately I can't remember if I've ever messed with the permissions on that folder, so don't know whether to blame Microsoft of myself. Still, see if that solution works for you chev.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #7

Windows 7
 
 

I'd blame yourself, it works for the rest of us OOTB
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #8

Windows Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mdmogren View Post
I'd blame yourself, it works for the rest of us OOTB
It doesn't work for me.
I have a program that doesn't show up anywhere until I download and open a file that requires the missing program to open, and there it is!

I'm still looking.........
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Try another search tool.

I gave up on Windows built in search capabilities. Clunky, slow, inaccurate, etc, and has been for a long time.

Best I have found is "Everything", from voidtools.com.

It's free.

Works fine on Windows 7, very fast. It re-indexes your drive every time it starts.

I have turned off Windows indexing on all drives.

Here is a sample search window. I searched for "word.exe" on all drives and these results came up in less than one second:


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My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2009   #10

Windows 7 Ult, Windows 8.1 Pro,
 
 

I'd rather blame the default folder and files options. Can the noobs please refrain from making such lame statements.

I don't have any problems finding folders that I created because I know right where they are at. But the search feature should be able to find user created folders and files without having to "fix" it.

This setting seems to have an effect, you can see where it will only search file names but not the contents unless you choose the bottom one.


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 Useless search functionality? What am I doing wrong?




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