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MySQL and/or PHP search engine


I'm currently trying to develop a little search engine on a php/mysql based website.

This search engine needs to be able to search on many text fields (5) and return the results even if the work is misspelled.

For example, a search on the term "ward" could return the result "search your words".
If possible, this could also get a precision setting that I could adjust.

I've developped a MySQL function that insert every characters of the term and the search fields in two temporary table and make a sql to determine if the result is fine. This is great for a Database with 20 - 50 results. But when I try with a database of 1000 - 5000 rows, this is not possible to make it work because i'm getting a timeout.

I also checked for the "soundex" possibilities, but didn't find a way to make it work with wildcard characters.

Here is the question:
I would like to know if any people has an algorythm in MySQL or PHP that could fit my needs.
Everything can help, even if it's just a link or a theorical algorythm.

I've attached my actual algorythm in a txt file.

Thank you
1 Solution
sivagnanam chandrakanthTechnical LeadCommented:
I think instead of trying to do with mysql you should try some text search engines.. I would suggest SOLR since it has many built in functionalities for different types of searches, I it reduces the overload on database and improve performance.

Ray PaseurCommented:
Google has kind of "done the job" in search.  Maybe they have a site search capability you could add.

If you are willing to reindex the site manually, I've had excellent results with Wrensoft Zoom.

I would avoid Sphider (paralyzingly slow).

I used Atomz for several sites, but it has context-aware advertising.  When I went to put it into a church web site, where (as you can imagine) people search for many deeply personal and controversial ideas, the advertisements were unacceptable.

If you succeed in developing a PHP search engine that has satisfactory performance, I hope you will write an article and publish it here on EE.  It's quite a challenging project, especially when your data base grows beyond a few thousand rows.
Mahesh BhutkarCommented:
I will recommend to go for Perl script for search engine to achieve performance as compared to Php. You can call your perl script within PHP.

Check out perl search engines..

Dansie Search Engine
Extropia Site Search
Fluid Dynamics Search
Global Data SiteSearch
HTTP::Index module
Matt's Simple Search
Perlfect Search
Selena Sol's Keyword Search
Sphinx new javaOpen Source Code Unix-based tool windows-based tool Mac OS X
WebSearch Perl Script
I would second Solr, it has a little bit of a steeper learning curve but it was built for search and can do what you want with a little configuration, plus it's scalable, can provide highlighting, suggestions etc.  To connect Solr to PHP you can use the Solarium library:

Solr: http://lucene.apache.org/solr/
Solarium: http://www.solarium-project.org/

If you want to play around with it a little, BitNami do a packaged version (on a VM or just install only) which will allow you to be up and running pretty quickly:


Goodluck, if you have more questions feel free to ask.
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