Any good search utilties for Windows XP?

The search feature that comes with my version of Windows XP is friggin’ useless. Takes forever, often misses stuff. I’d shoot that friggin’ animated dog that comes with it.

So I was wondering if there are any better search utilities. I’ve been seeng ads for Google desktop search, but I vaguely remember reading that Google desktop search sends info into Google and otherwise has spyware-ish features. Anybody have any search software they can recommend? Anyone up on Google desktop’s capabilities and spyware-ishness, if any?

I’ve used Agent Ransack with success. It’s not super polished, and multiple searches are a bit troublesome to navigate, but it’s been reliable and they have a free version.
And if anyone knows why the MS Search really does skip files quite often, I’d like to know.

I’ll second agent ransack - it’s indispensible to me.

By default it only searches files it knows about .doc .xls .txt .html and so on, this has come up before, first thing I did was lose the frakking dog.

I have trouble remembering Windoze stuff, I think it’s something along the lines of. . .

Search advanced settings –> poke around various menus -> options -> index files with unknown extensions

You don’t have to actually enable indexing, but without this option the search only looks in .doc .txt .html .xls blah.

If you right click on the damn dog you can turn him off. Of course he has walk off into the background rather than dying in some horrible fashion or simply disappearing.

Yahoo Desktop Search.

This is a terrific, indispensible, and free search utility. It covers ALL files on your machine including e-mails, Windows docs (incl. Word and Ppt), pdf’s, music, everything.

The search is instantaneous and has a PREVIEW screen so you know at a glance if it’s found the particular file you’re looking for.

Thanks, I will right click on the damn dog, though I still wish I coudl kill it. And I’ll look into Yahoo desktop.

Don’t dis Google desktop search. It’s as fast as Google itself, works quietly and quickly.

It does not send anything to Google unless you specifically tell it you want it to. Google tells you clearly the ramifications of any feature that sends data, and makes it easy to opt out. They don’t take any personally identifiable information anyway, and all features that require sending data back to them are clearly identified.

Since Google is the best search on the Web, it’s also the best for your desktop.

“Since carbon-dioxide-rich environments are good for plants, they’re good for you!”

I’ve been using Copernic Desktop at a co-worker’s suggestion, and I’ve been pretty happy.

The issue with Windows search is that you always have to click ‘advanced options’ and then check the ‘sub-folders’ option. Otherwise it’ll miss them.

Logical Fallacy; carbon-dioxide is not Google.

Yes, that’s what I was saying. The original…

…doesn’t follow, either. Web search and desktop search are astoundingly different tasks – “since” implies that they’re not. In particular, I’d agree with the first part of the sentence, but the second is (in my opinion) false: Spotlight is far better if you’re on a Mac, Agent Ransack better on Windows, and I find Google Desktop Search annoying and intrusive (in a usability sense, not a privacy one).

Google’s ok, but brings back too many imprecise results. actually is better at filtering out the chaff. And Infoseek was best of all before Disney bought it and destroyed it. Had the Big D kept its mitts off an excellent search engine, I believe Infoseek would have surpassed Google and then some. Now what’s left of it exists at

Wikipedia says that Yahoo has since acquired some of Infoseek’s Ultraseek software, so maybe that’s why KarlGauss is finding Yahoo’s desktop search to be very good.

This is all very interesting, but I wonder if Yahoo does that spyware thing?

From here on the Yahoo Desktop site:

FWIW, I’ve never seen, received, or become aware of anything that made me think my privacy was being breached or compromised.