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Windows 7: Search options

11 Apr 2012   #1

win 7
Search options

First I apologize if this thread is in the wrong section but I couldn't find a more fitting one like "Windows 7 use" (yes, this version needs a manual) so I posted in here.

I confronted several issues with search. I wouldn't post this but there were too many cases that remained unsolved. One example is I can't locate the executable for paint.
I typed paint in search while in C:\ (system drive) with no success. Instead, it could find hundreds of files matching odd criteria, like if "paint" appeared in the name of the containing folder or in the file description, which is too advanced for a basic search.
And guess what -- the file with the actual name wasn't found.
I checked in Organize > Folder and search options > Search > When searching non-indexed locations > Include system directories but in vain.

It happened with files created by me as well.

So, 2 questions arise, as simple as they can be:

1. How can I check the options to search for a file regular/hidden/system in regular/hidden/system directories?

2. Options for input words location: name/content (not interested in others), regardless of indexations (I don't want to change location indexations for these options to work).

My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2012   #2
Dave Atkin

Windows 7 Ultimate x64


1) To change the options for scanning hidden and protected system files you have to change the folder options. Click Start>Control Panel>folder options>Click the view tab.

2) Can you clarify on this?

3) The application for Microsoft paint is 'mspaint'. It will appear somewhere in the search eventually.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2012   #3

Windows 7 Pro 32bit / Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Right-clicking the shortcut in your Start Menu and choosing Properties shows the path to the target EXE file ... As Mr. Atkin suggests, options for the way Windows searches can be modified under Folder Options. There is a Search tab with a number of settings. Also, you can add or remove folders from the search index and/or search un-indexed locations.

I'm sure someone here can explain all of your options.

Best Wishes,
My System SpecsSystem Spec

11 Apr 2012   #4

win 7

Thank you for replying.
I had already set to view hidden files and folders and had unchecked "hide protected operating system..." before searching. It doesn't work.
I meant the way search worked in XP -- search the term either in filename only or include content, i.e. inside a text file.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2012   #5

Windows 7 Pro 32bit / Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I think that can be found in the Search tab of Folder Options, 'Always search file names and contents (this might take several minutes)' and also 'Don't use the index when searching in the folders for system files'.

Both options will increase search times and these switches are off by default (at least on my system).

Be Well,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2012   #6

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64 +Linux_VMs +Chromium_VM

You should try File Locator Lite as an alternative to Windows search.
I try to avoid 3rd party add-ins, but i really like this one.
I've been using it 2+ years and it always works well for me.
It's free, and also known as "Agent Ransack".

FileLocator Lite - Free File Searching Utility
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2012   #7

Windows 7 Pro 32bit / Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Did a quick test using Windows and found it worked pretty well. One thing to remember is to search from C:\ (or at least a parent folder). Explorer looks in sub-folders but does not search back up the tree.

I just don't use search that often.

Be Well
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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