Mimic Windows 7 Federated Search in Vista

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A member of the WinVistaClub.com forums recently posted a great tip for mimicking (sort of) the Federated Search Connector functionality found in Windows 7 on your Windows XP/Vista PC.

In case you don’t know, Federated Search is a new feature of Windows 7 that lets you search internet web sites from within an Explorer window. There are a lot of really cool Search Connectors which you can add to your computer like this Flickr connector or this Twitter one. You can make your own by following the instructions here.

Anyway, while you can’t really have true Federated Search outside of Windows 7, you can mimic the functionality by using the Search Provider feature in Internet Explorer. To do so, the forum post suggests the following steps:

1. Go to the site you want to create the Search Connector for. Example: deviantart.com
2. Now in DevArt, search for “TEST” (all caps)
3. Copy the URL to the clipboard & then head over here.
4. Paste the URL in ‘Step 3’
5. Type DevArt in ‘Step 4’
6. Install

You’ll then have a Search Connector just for that particular web site. You can do this for any site where you can do a search for the word “TEST” (without quotes) using their search box then pasting the URL in ‘Step 3.’ It’s not Federated Search, but it is a pretty good tip – and one IE users on Windows 7 can use too.

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