windows search The searching capabilities in Vista are one of its best features and one of the most useful, and now it’s about to get even better. Just yesterday Microsoft launched the first preview of Windows Search 4.0. It is the successor to the Windows Search Platform which means it replaces Instant Search on Vista and Windows Desktop Search 3.0 on XP. In a nutshell, this preview is an update to the Windows Search indexer. In addition, they squashed some bugs and made improvements to performance, reliability, and recoverability features.

For Vista users, they can expect the following improvements (note that Windows Search 4.0 is an extension to the built-in searching capabilities in Vista):

  • 33% faster query response time
  • Remote Index Discovery has been extended for PC-to-PC Search which means finding information shared on a remote PC is easy
  • Rollback Recovery has been implemented (meaning the search index will “roll back” to the last known good state in the event of an error)

For XP users, they can expect the following (note that Windows Search 4.0 is an extension to Windows Desktop Search for XP):

  • XP users have the ability to search remote indexes for network shares
  • Ability to host Vista-style preview handlers in the preview pane (when you’re doing a search, you can click on a file and see a preview in the preview pane)
  • Faster previewer updates for XP

According to information on Microsoft’s website regarding Windows Search 4.0 for XP users, “The WS4 installation process automatically upgrades Windows Desktop Search 2.6 or later versions of Windows Search Technologies.” If you have an earlier version (prior to 2.6) installed, you’ll have to remove the application first before installing Windows Search 4.0.

Searching in both Vista, XP, and Windows Server 2003 has just gotten even better, thanks to Windows Search 4.0. If you’d like to download it, click here for the download links.

Source: Windows Vista Blog