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date 7.Oct.2012

■ xplorer² v2.2 ultimate edition desktop search improvements

Windows desktop search (WDS) has been underused, partly because it won't always work reliably, and partly because it isn't easy to access its more powerful features. The latest xplorer² sorts out these problems; to be exact it only solves the latter, whereas for the unreliability part it complements WDS with the traditional robust search available in xplorer².

When you use Tools > Find files command in the new xplorer² ultimate, you will see the traditional GUI. But once you start the search xplorer² will first try to get fast results from WDS and then pause. If you didn't find what you were looking for, use Click for robust search button (see picture) to repeat the search using xplorer² own search engine. You can use almost all the advanced search features (e.g combine keywords with dates and other file attributes) with WDS.
click for robust search

If WDS cannot find any matching files, xplorer² will automatically proceed with its robust search mode. You will notice a big speed improvement using WDS, especially when you search for text in documents and as the search scope is bigger (e.g. all your computer). Note that WDS can work only for documents on your fixed hard disks (among a few other limitations).

A simpler road to fast WDS is Tools > Fast search menu command. Here you enter a couple of keywords and xplorer² searches for matching files under the folder browsed in the active view pane (to search all your computer first browse My Computer folder). You don't have to specify what properties to match, by default WDS will return any file that matches the keyword(s), either in its filename, text content, tags or any other windows registered text property. As its name indicates this search mode is even faster than <Ctrl+F>. The downside is that only full words are matched, not parts of a word. So you cannot match software searching only for "ware". Also you cannot search for non-text properties e.g. dates.

Using the advanced options editor you can make this type of search even faster if you limit its scope to the kind of information you are usually after. So if you only need to find text content and and don't care about filenames, tick the File content option (see picture)
fastsearch settings editor

■ Upgrade information

If you own a xplorer² v2.x key then the upgrade to v2.2 is free. Just download the latest trial version and install it over your existing version. If you own the professional version and want to upgrade to the ultimate and take advantage of the Windows Desktop Search (WDS) improvements, please use Help > Upgrade to ultimate menu command and follow the instructions.

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