Thursday, August 12, 2004 -- search files and outlook -- a review

X1 instantly searches files & email. For Outlook, Outlook Express, Eudora and Netscape Mail.

I took another look at this since Fallows wrote of it recently in the NYT. It's a product of Bill Gross, a Caltech undergrad classmate of mine. He made his initial fortune on a Lotus Notes module (long forgotten).

It's not quite ready for primetime. Some odd bugs and behaviors. Sent my CPU usage through the roof. Every time I hit the letter 'e' when searching in the file tag it jumped to the email search tag!!

Now it's quieting down after I tweaked the options:

1. Turned off all outlook/email/contacts indexing. Lookout works great for Outlook, and X1 doesn't search notes or tasks (meaning it's not useful for me).

2. Removed all the quick key entries for email. That stopped the 'e' problem, so now I can search for terms containing the exotic letter 'e'.

3. Restricted indexing to a subset of directories and to files under 2MB. In some directories limited indexing to file and folder name. If nothing else X1 may be fast way to locate directories and files.

4. X1 ONLY does stem searching. It doesn't do substring searching. This is a reasonable compromise for document indexing, but for finding folders/directories substring searching is feasible and necessary. So it's not as good for navigating directories as WCD (for example).

5. I need more control over what NOT to index, preferably using regex to define directory paths and files to exclude. X1 is indexing all of the FrontPage index files.

Given the above it might be useable. I have a LOT of content to index.

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