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Search Websites from Your Desktop in Windows 7 with Search Connectors

The new Windows 7 Search is greatly improved over previous versions and allows you to search for data on local and networked machines. Today we take it a step further and show you how to extend the search capability to sites on the Internet.

This new search feature in Windows 7 lets you search content on remote locations right in side Windows Explorer. Now from the desktop you can search different websites without having to open a new browser session. This is feature will also allow IT administrators to employ for searching through the company SharePoint site.

Using Search Connectors

After downloading a search connector just double click on the OSDX file to install it.

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You will get a Windows message asking if you’re sure you want to install the connector.

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The connectors show up in Windows Explorer on the left side under favorites. Select the one you want to use and then type in what you’re looking for in the search box.

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Results are displayed as you type in what you’re looking for.

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If you activate the Preview Pane you can get an overview of the page.

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Here is an example of using the TechNet Search Connector.

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Search Connectors will only work in Windows 7 so if you are an early adopter you can check out this new feature. There are a bunch of Search Connectors online you just need to do a search, and in fact you can make them yourself. To get you started download our Search Connector for this site.

Download the How-To Geek Search Connector

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 09/28/09

Comments (3)

  1. theboss

    plz could you tell me from where i get the search connectors from any site ??
    sorry i didnt get that :(
    and thank you :)

  2. David Joseph

    Download the How-To Geek Search Connector link does not work!

    http://www.howtogeek.com/geekers/up/Howtogeek.osdx

    Says, This document had no style information.

  3. Daniel U. Thibault

    You can find “Wikipedia Search Connector for SharePoint Server, Search Server, and FAST Search for SharePoint” at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=69b13ced-1019-4432-81fc-95d84d4430a1&displaylang=en

    I downloaded the OSDX from there, and was able within minutes to touch them up to create a Wiktionary connector as well as connectors to the French Wikipedia and Wiktionary. The page also has a link to the Federated Search Connector Gallery for Enterprise Search which includes a variety of other OSDX files.

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