Windows Desktop Search 4.0 Has Arrived

A new version of Windows Desktop Search has just been released - Windows Search 4.0 Preview. (The "preview" part means it's still being tested out, sort of like "beta.") For those of you who don't know, Windows Search is the desktop search feature that is built into Windows Vista, but you don't have to be running Vista to take advantage of Windows Search - you can run it in XP, too.

This latest update is a significant release, with many features designed for enterprise users. However, there are new features that will benefit everyone, like the speed increase (33% faster!), its ability to index encrypted files, and Remote Index Discovery, which means it can index all the Windows machines on your network, no matter what version of Windows they are running.

Other improvements include:

  • Bug fixes - most of the reported bugs seen since Windows Vista RTM have been fixed.
  • Rollback Recovery - your search index will roll back to the last known good state if an error occurs instead of being rebuilt from scratch.
  • Windows software updates for Watson errors
  • Faster previewer updates for Windows XP

For IT Professionals specifically, important new features include:

  • Improved performance when indexing Exchange in online mode - less packets and less RPC calls are made, which means less load on the server. Plus, no local cache (.ost)
  • Support for indexing online delegate mailboxes
  • Support for Group Policy settings (Search.adm/Search.admx) has been extended and improved, including per-user policies.
  • An add-in for indexing redirected "My Documents" files (32-bit)

Here's where you can get it:

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