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Windows 7: Win 7 Search Function

16 May 2011   #1

win7 64bit or win7 ultimate
Win 7 Search Function

I just upgraded from Win XP Pro to Win 7 and in my opinion, the Win 7 search function is significantly deficient to the point I am very close to going back to XP just for the Search function that I use daily in my work.

In XP, I could do the following that I cannot do in Win 7 unless I have misread all the explanations on this site:

1. Whether the file was created, modified or last accessed.
2. Date range (very important for me), e.g. between 17 Dec 2008 and 10 February 2009.
3. Size - when not sure, I could do an at least or at most filter. Win 7 forces you to pick a size range.
4. I used to be able to Search base on text within File - very important; can't do that anymore as well.
5. A Date search like Yahoo Mail would also be great because you also have the option of stating 'before' or 'after' a certain date that Windows never had.

I also hate that it starts searching and producing results before I even finish putting in data or filters, total waste of electricity and CPU power.

I might also not that Win 7 is so slow compared to XP to be reidiculous, even just now when I switch my wireless mouse/keyboard from my XP computer to my Win7 computer, XP recognizes the device immediately, Win 7 has to go thru the entire loading of drivers again taking 15 times as long as XP by my timing.

Hope you come out with a fix for Win 7 Seach quickly otherwise I am going back to XP.

Very disappointed in Win 7, seems you just changed everything just for the sake of changing stuff. Things that worked fine before you have tweaked to the point of ridiculoousness. IF IT AIN'T BROKE, DON'T CHANGE IT.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 May 2011   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)

Don't ask me to defend Win7's search. Others may do that, but in my opinion I'm on your side of the issue. I suppose it's a matter of getting used to.

I believe it's very similar to the "enhanced" Windows Search that came out in WinXP (SP3? maybe SP2?) originally, though it was an option with WinXP and you could retain the original Win98-simple standard search syntax and GUI that we'd gotten so used to over the years.

Anyway, my solution is to NOT use Win7's "enhanced" search, because I honestly can't seem to get comfortable with it either.

Instead, I use two separate free products that give me exactly what I need... which is mostly "search by full or partial file name", and sometimes a more elaborate search-criteria search (by date/time, file size, etc.), and at other times searching for text strings within text-format files. I have no need to search inside of PDFs, DOCs, or other non-text formats.


(1) Search My Files which is an "on demand" search tool, where you define your search criteria each time you want to do a search. It also allows more elaborate searches based on file criteria, or looking for text or binary file contents, not just file names (with expected wildcards, etc.).

(2) Everything is an always-running tool which builds an index of every folder/file on your system (subject to setup configuration options), with the index continuously updated any time a new file is created, deleted, or modified. It thus supports "instant" full or partial file name search (including the expected wildcards, etc.) as you type what you're looking for, based on this always up-to-date index. As you type, there is a list of "matching" file names presented, and as you type more characters the "hit list" is reduced as appropriate.

I think you'll find both of these products much more user-friendly and intuitive than Windows Search. Furthermore, Search My Files can do things that Windows Search cannot do, because of its extensive optional search criteria variables... and is much more likely to satisfy your craving for WinXP's simple but sophisticated search.

P.S. - don't judge Win7 on the basis of "search". Believe me, once you get used to it you will NEVER WANT TO GO BACK TO WINXP! There's just too much that's good or fantastic in Win7.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 May 2011   #3

win7 64bit or win7 ultimate
Mucho grats, Aloha, John (nothing follows)

My System SpecsSystem Spec

16 May 2011   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

You might find this free ebook useful:
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 May 2011   #5

XP / Win7 x64 Pro

I suggest you read up on the Windows 7 search tutorials on here and anywhere else you can find them. People are often frustrated with it and think it can't do many of the things XP was able to, when in fact it can, just in a different way.

Windows Search - Configure and Use

Search in Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Win 7 Search Function

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