[xplorer˛] — Google to the rescue
home » blog » 15 July 2007

"Search and ye shall find"

What a week this has been! The announcement of the stable build 1704 to xplorer˛ existing customers coincided with a gaffe in the offices of the popular antivirus kit AVG. So many of the people installing the new xplorer˛ were warned that it contained some trojan horse or other. Which was of course not true, just an artefact of the bug in the virus definitions of said AVG software. After loads of angry emails AVG corrected the problem and within one day new virus definition files were sent and the false positive was suppressed. I heard they screwed up a few other popular tools too.

Usually whenever I send out update emails, I get a few emails back accusing me as spammer. People don't even remember software they bought, what can you do? — just remove them from the list and let it be. This time AVG added extra spice to the update process. It was interesting reading peoples' mixed responses. You had two "trusted" pieces of software, one newly updated and one calling it a trojan. Who do you believe? I suppose it was 50-50 in the emails I received. Hopefully in any future similar incidents, xplorer˛ users should be a bit more trusting (and AVG more careful with their update monkeys :)

In these emails I also heard some gripes about the difficulty finding information on xplorer˛ website and documentation, so I devote the remaining of this article on ways to help you locate what you want easily. But keep in mind that xplorer˛ does a lot of things and there's a lot of information about it so finding what you want cannot be instant. But with the right approach it is more than doable.

Most of the documentation is in HTML format, that is the website and the quickstart guide. The latter is available online too. To dig up information you just have to use your skills as you would in google, that is pick the right keyword to search for. You can use the new search box near the bottom of the main page to do a local google search within zabkat.com domain. That will cover documentation, FAQ and the ever expanding blog.

I find google's search toolbar very convenient. It synchronizes itself with the current search keywords and presents them as clickable buttons. Once you reach the page that supposedly has your keyword, you just click on this toolbar button and the page scrolls to reveal the hilighted term. Which is nice and time saving.

Selecting the correct keyword or combination is a black art but within xplorer˛ limited domain you can first use the exact text of the menu command you want information on, for example Multi paste. If you are using a translated version of xplorer˛ you have to find the english name of the original command, disabling the translation DLL temporarily.

If a command is not covered in the quickstart guide, then fire up the full manual using Help | Contents menu command, and search for the same text in adobe reader. No google toolbar there but <Ctrl+F> or Edit | Find will allow you to enter the keyword you are looking for. A few "Find next" clicks and you should find what you're looking for.

The forum is another good google-friendly search domain. There is a search box near the top where you can type your keywords to locate past discussions that referenced and perhaps solved your problem. If it's not there or you can't find it, you can post a new question (after a quick registration process) and you'll get a reply from volunteers supporting the xplorer˛ community (thanks chaps!).

As a last resort you can always send me an email. Registered customers can use this form with their registration reference number (as it appears in Help | About) and they will get a response with the answer to their problems. The advantage of using google first is that you may get your reply DIY and immediately, but I tend to respond to emails within a couple of working days, so it's not too bad if you're not in a hurry.

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