Index Interface

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Indexed searching works by searching a pre-built index to locate files, its main advantage is that a search on an index is normally very fast, e.g. sub-second times. So, before you can perform a search you need to create an index. Once the index has been created you can search it by typing information into the search field. Multiple indexes can be created and shared over network drives with other people.

 

Index based searches can be performed using the Index Search interface, opened by selecting the option Index Search from the criteria drop-down or by using the menu option Search -> Criteria -> Index Search.

 

IndexSearchDropDown

 

 

This will change the criteria interface to look like this:

 

IndexSearch

 

The Index Interface has three main sections:

 

NumberOne

Search field. This is a search-as-you-type field and shows previous searches using the drop-down box. The 'Aa' button switches on/off case-sensitive searching, if the specified index supports it.

 

NumberTwo

Index list. Shows the current index and when dropped-down all the available indexes, to add a new one pick the '<Create New Index...>' option, which will open the Index Manager.

 

NumberThree

Index Manager button. Click this button to open the Index Manager.

 

 

Performing a Search

 

The search terms can be specified using standard Boolean Expressions logic, such as AND, OR, NEAR, NOT, and LIKE. There is, however, one important difference. Whereas a classic FileLocator Pro Boolean search will match mid-word an index search assumes that the term matches the start of the word. Index searches have an implicit '<' at the start and classic searches have an implicit '*' at the front.

 

This table illustrates how search terms will be matched:

 

Search Term

Index Search

Classic Search




fine

Any word starting with 'fine', e.g.

 

fine, fined, finest, etc.

Any word with 'fine' in, e.g.

 

fine, define, refined etc.

 

*fine

Any word with 'fine' in, e.g.

 

fine, define, refined etc.

 

(Same as index search)

<fine

Any word starting with 'fine', e.g.

 

fine, fined, finest, etc.

 

(Same as index search)

<fine>

Just the whole word 'fine'.

 

(Same as index search)

 

fin*n

Any word starting with 'fin' and having 'n' in it, e.g.

 

finding, finance, etc.

 

Any word with 'fin' somewhere in it, followed by 'n', e.g.

 

finding, definitions

 

"fine"

Just the whole word 'fine'.

Any word with 'fine' in, e.g.

 

fine, define, refined etc.

 

"fine day"

Matches the phrase 'fine day'

(Same as index search)




 

 

Limitations of Indexed Search

 

Although indexed searching is very fast there is one very important fact to keep in mind, the term being searched for must be in the index for it to be found. Common issues to be aware of:

 

File changes

If files are changed, added or deleted and the index is not updated then searches on the index will be driven by the old information not the new changes.

 

Search terms

During the indexing process not all terms are considered 'indexable'. Words that are very common and appear in all documents, such as the or and, are not indexed nor are character sequences that do not seem to be valid language terms, eg. 4*2.

 



 

 

Performance Impact of Indexes

 

The indexing feature is not constantly running in the background and indexes are not loaded unless you try and search them, so there is no performance impact to people who never need to use the indexing functionality. If you don’t use the feature then you won’t notice it because it’s effectively disabled by default.

 

This method of operation has the advantage that the program is not secretly consuming CPU cycles or eating away at disk space but it has the disadvantage that the index isn’t updated unless you specifically update it. This is fine for large repositories of fairly static data but can cause problems when files are changing frequently. You can schedule index updates using the Windows Task Scheduler and the indexing command line utility.

 

 

 

 


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Help file version: 8.0

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