Thursday, February 07, 2008

Customizing search in Windows XP to index files with unknown file extensions

First of all, why would you want to customize search in Windows XP to index files with unknown file extensions?

Assume you have a java file (a file with a .java extension) and when you perform a search, text in this file is not searched. Why? Because it is an unknown file extension for Windows XP and it will not index this file. I know it is a plain text file and should be searched but it is not.

Perform the following to enable windows to index files with unknown extensions
  1. Goto Start -> Search -> Change preferences
  2. Click on With Indexing Service (for faster local searches) or Without Indexing Service.
  3. Select Yes, enable Indexing Service. It might already be selected if it was Without Indexing Service in the previous step.
  4. Click on Change Indexing Service settings (Advanced).
  5. In the Indexing service window goto view menu and click on customize.
  6. In the Customize View window check Console tree check box under the MMC section and click on ok.
  7. Right click on Indexing Service on Local Machine and select properties.
  8. On the generation tab, check Index files with unknown extensions check box and click on ok.
  9. Close the Indexing Service window and click on ok in the search window.
  10. Click on All files and folders and start searching. It will find any word in any file with any extension.

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