DoctorBill wrote:
I hate Windows 7 !
I knew XP quite well, but Windows 7 is a ^#$@#^%$$  &^%&$$#O^E !

I try to search for a file on my hard drive(s) and use that window on the Upper Right Side
of Windows Explorer (is that still the name of it?)

HOW do I get this $&@%# program to actually DO a search for a file ?

There's lots of power to the search tool, but there's a lot of cryptic options that you have to use to actually get it to do what you want it to do. To me, the search tool is sufficiently cryptic that it's not really useful for anybody that's not a techie (e.g., the sort of person that does a lot of scripting). It also falls short in that it tends to blur the difference between data and metadata, and you have to go to extra effort to tell it to search only for file names, rather than searching for contents within files.

For me, the limit of the search tool is in context-based searching:

- Searching for file names in a sub-folder, using the Windows Explorer (and yes, that's still the name in Windows 7)

- Searching using the search box in the Start menu

- Searching the Control Panel. If I have the Control Panel open, it's easier to use the search tool to find specific things than it is to try to remember the navigation to get there. I find that this method works remarkably well in Win 7 and 8.1, and it's enough that I can pretty much ignore the mostly brain-dead UI offered in the Win 10 Control Panel and Settings applet.

Beyond that, if I need to do searching, I generally resort to non-Microsoft tools. I find that I really like the controls offered by Agent Ransack, and by putting an icon for that in my toolbar that I locate next to the start button, I can get to that one quickly with Logo-1, as easily as I can get to the Windows search tool with Logo-F.

There's other third-party search tools -- one of the most common is Everything, which is open source. One difference between Agent Ransack and Everything is that I believe that Agent Ransack will use Microsoft's indexing, where Everything relies on an index that it has to build.

I'm enough of a Linux guy that I have Cygwin, and for some things, I prefer to drop out to Cygwin bash command window, and use 'find' from there. That's not dramatically simpler than the syntax of the Win 7, so much as I've used it enough over the years that I'm adept in using it.


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