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How to change XP's default search behavior

Posted on 2006-07-09
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Last Modified: 2008-01-16
Hi,

When searching for any file in XP, I believe there is a setting within XP which prevents the search tool from searching within the "Program Files" and "Windows" folder. Also, it always searches within .zip and .cab files as well. Is this some setting in the registry? Is there a way to change/control this default behavior as per our own preference.
I have found a tool to change whether or not XP should search within .zip and .cab but I am still looking for something to force search within "Program Files" and "Windows" folder. Any ideas on how to do this? Also, I would like to know about the specific key/value in the registry that controls all these settings in XP.

Thanks.
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LVL 30

Expert Comment

by:callrs
ID: 17069094
http://xpsearch.info/xps1.htm     XPSearch.info: Searching with WindowsXP
>
To remove zip/archive file support from Windows XP:
regsvr32 /u %windir%\system32\zipfldr.dll

To re-enable the support:
regsvr32 %windir%\system32\zipfldr.dll
<

or use this utility:
http://windowsxp.mvps.org/utils/NoFindInsideZip.exe from http://windowsxp.mvps.org/nofindinsidezip.htm
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by:CyberneticsConnoisseur
ID: 17069119
callrs, thanks for the link, but I already have this tool. I mentioned this in my question that I have a tool to bypass search within zip files (I use this tool for it). What I need is a way to force search within "Program Files" and "Windows" folder.
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callrs earned 1500 total points
ID: 17069138
You don't need the tool, you can use the regsvr32 command from the command prompt (Start > Run > cmd)

To force search, this should work:

Start > Search > All files and folders > More advanced options > Search system folders, Search subfolders, Search hidden files and folders

Either that, or turn on display of hidden items:

Start > run > explorer > Tools > Folder Options > View >( Cancel out the "Hide" or "Hidden" options)
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Author Comment

by:CyberneticsConnoisseur
ID: 17069285
tried that as well. does the advanced search option set some value in the registry to true? can we tweak that to always use advanced search mode by default and include windows and program files folder.
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Expert Comment

by:callrs
ID: 17069324
Once you set it, doesn't the default stay?
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Author Comment

by:CyberneticsConnoisseur
ID: 17069338
no ... i want that it should always use the advanced search setting that i set once for all. but it always ignores those settings.
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Expert Comment

by:callrs
ID: 17069359
I have XP Sp2 & the advanced search settings stay for next time once I set them & do a search. I also have display of hidden/system files turned on in Explorer.
Questions:
-Sp2 or Sp1?
-Are explorer settings to display hidden/system files on or off?
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Author Comment

by:CyberneticsConnoisseur
ID: 17069369
sp2 / explorer settings to show display hidden files and folders on. hide protected OS system files is checked.
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Expert Comment

by:Here2Help
ID: 17073290
Hey.

Have your tried Windows desktop Search?

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/desktopsearch/default.mspx
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Author Comment

by:CyberneticsConnoisseur
ID: 17074660
Here2Help,
That tool seems to be built on the lines of the google desktop. That is not what I am looking for in my case, but I appreciate the help.

callrs,
I was hoping for more details w.r.t. registry specific information that controls these settings. I will try to research on it myself. thanks for all the help, anyways.
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Expert Comment

by:callrs
ID: 17078276
Why research when you can find out directly using these tools:

http://www.sysinternals.com/Utilities/Regmon.html     Sysinternals Freeware - Regmon
http://www.epsilonsquared.com/          Epsilon Squared - InstallWatch & InstallRite

(Also look up Total Uninstall)

Sorry I couldn't do it for you; been too hungry lately
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