Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.

Windows 7: Simple file name search

28 Jul 2010   #11

Windows 7
Having to Type "name:" is Hardly An Advance

It is very interesting that Microsoft dropped the option to search file names only during Beta testing. I think it is a big problem for Microsoft that beta testers tend to be power users/advanced users much more than the general population of users. The beta testing context does not provide a representative sasmple of users to Microsoft, so beta-based changes are skewed away from people like me: A scholar who is happy with Office 2003, doesn't use much else besides that and the internet, virtually never needs to do a content search, and just wishes that those who love and work in technology would better understand the needs and workday situations of other types of users. My bottom line take: Having to key in "name:" on all my searches is a step backwards, something like being forced to drive a manual transmission car because the auto company gearheads enjoy the feel of it. Faster searches? Right, like I need to shave off a fraction of a second while My Documents is being searched. There are many kinds of users. Wake up Microsoft, after all these years.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2010   #12

Windows 7 Home Premium
I do not understand

I have been using filename searches since Windows 3.11, yes I know it is a long time ago. In the eternal hope to know less and use better that Microsoft seems to have embraced, we shall know less, it will take us longer, and we will be more lost.

Why? I do not know.

The content search is powerfull and has helped me 10 times in 30 years of computing, from software development to software teaching, when I was looking for a file that I had not used in many years and I remembered some small particular word in it. In my day to day work I perform at least 10 searches a day.

That makes content seaches for me, based on an approximated percentage from above, usefull in 0.0001% of cases, and the name: filename search usefull in the 99.9999% of cases.

However, I as a software developer I am probably 1% of the Windows user community. It does note make sense to satisfy me since I do not represent the market.

I will try to fix the new OS to think that I am always typing name: ... or I will make it think that when I type name: it means I want a content search and when I do not type it a filename search...

Hope I did not bother anyone. I have been using Windows 7 for about ten minutes more than I took to write this, and needed to find a folder, which means I was quite sadenned by this yet other upgrade/downgrade.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2010   #13

Windows 7

I did find and download a program called "Search Everything", everything.exe. I am not a technical person, but it is simple and I have not had new problems attributable to it, as far as I know. I think I got it from CNET. I also redid my Index, indexing only doc files this time, so I can search on a file name with Everything or search on contents using native Windows search--without getting the fire hose of search returns and clutter. I am not likely to search on content in non-doc files, so this approach works for me, I think. Good luck.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

18 Aug 2010   #14

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

Search Everything is a quicker and better choice provided you only search file names, not contents.

In the last 15 years, I have wanted to search for content exactly 0 (zero) times. I find files mostly by navigating into subfolders and looking for file names, but I use Search Everything fairly often.

I don't need to search for content because my file names are highly relevant to their content.

My folder structure has a lot of subfolders, so I don't have to look through 200 files names by eye. My folders very rarely contain more than 20 files--and the file names always describe the content.

I'd have long since gone crazy if I had hundreds of files in a single folder or if I had a spaghetti sauce recipe buried inside a file called "Visit To Grandma".
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2010   #15

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.

I’ve also have been using Windows forever and found totally confusing the changes in Search on Vista and now is much worst in Windows 7!

MS seams to try to outguess the user and limit their options (this remembers me of Apple).

Yes “content search” can be useful (in a very small number of cases) but why-o-why they don't make it optional !!!

They have also decided to hide the other options (called advance ;-) ) to which everyone was usen and the only way to find the "name:" option in searching in Google - certainly not in Windows help.

Really sub-standard!!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2010   #16
James Colbert


The search tool in Win7 has more problems than the awkward filter based searching. It also often has trouble finding files you know are in a given directory which, after a failed search attempt, can be manually found with a few scrolls.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2010   #17

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1

Here is a lot of information regarding the Windows search options.

The XP method was much more user friendly. Would it be that difficult for MS to create a native GUI offering a more simplistic manner of presenting the many possible queries indicated in the above link?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2010   #18
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit

I like the Win 7 search.

I have found 100% of my searches.

XP I was lucky to get 60% of what I was searching for.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Oct 2010   #19

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Hopalong X View Post
I like the Win 7 search.

I have found 100% of my searches.

XP I was lucky to get 60% of what I was searching for.
That's great, Mike.
Perhaps you are a touch typist that has memorized all of the available options offered in Win 7 advanced query syntax search? :)

Windows Search Advanced Query Syntax
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Oct 2010   #20
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit

I use it like I would a Google search most of the time.

I didn't know they had a name for doing this. Sometimes that is all I have to search by.
Windows Search Advanced Query Syntax

Sometimes just a file type.
Maybe a little luck thrown in.
It works for me.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Simple file name search

Thread Tools

Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
simple question regarding file size of copied and paste file
If you right click properties of both the paste file and original file and compare both of the file size shown there, if both are the same does it mean that the paste file is properly copy over?
Performance & Maintenance
What's up with Google -- can't return simple search
Hi there. Is it only me or is Google becoming more and more USELESS at returning sensible results these days. I'm playing around with a few Linux distros at the moment and want to install VMWARE workstation on them -- so not being a Linux expert I type in a reasonable query essentially...
Simple php file manager
I'm currently have a website from zymic hosting, And I was wonder if it's possible to find a PHP-based file manager, so I can upload and manage files without using FTP. I'm mostly looking for one that allows me to get the direct url of a file so i can share that file. Help? thanks.
Network & Sharing
Simple way to search non-indexed areas?
There are times when I have an external drive, or want to search system files but don't want to index them. Other times I know the file is where I am looking but for one reason or another it doesn't appear. Isn't there a simple way to override the index file so I can search everywhere beneath...
General Discussion
A simple search by file name
I have spent hours, trying to get even the simplest search for file names using Windows Explorer. One time, spend days and tried ever option 2 or 3 times and then after a re-boot, the simple search stated to work. It has worked for about a month now and now it is back to its old ways. Example:...
General Discussion

Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 13:47.
Twitter Facebook Google+ Seven Forums iOS App Seven Forums Android App