Indexing Service Windows Assistance
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Indexing Service

January 17, 2002

From Search Preferences enable/disable Indexing Service
[above] From Search Preferences select Indexing service to enable/disable Indexing Service [below].
Enable/Disable Indexing Service
Indexing Service
Add or Modify a Directory
Partition Properties Page

Indexing Service

If you perform any text search then you will really enjoy the Indexing Service. Indexing Service dramatically increases the speed of text searches.

More about windows XP Search Companion.

Indexing Service indexes the following types of documents:

  • HTML
  • Text
  • Microsoft Office 95 and later
  • Internet mail and news (with Internet Information Services installed)
  • Any other document for which a document filter is available

The indexing of files is done whenever the computer is idle.

When Windows XP is installed the Indexing Service is setup and two catalogs are created: System and Web. The Web catalog is created if IIS is installed.

The problem is what directories are included in the System catalog. When the System catalog is created all permanent storage devices are included. This means if you have 5 partitions then the system catalog will have C:\, D:\, E:\, F:\, an G:\ directories. This could involve a lot of wasted indexing. Therefore you should fine turn the System catalog to better fit your environment.

As an example Windows Assistance has a separate partition just for data, E:. Our D: partition is for installed applications and indexing it may not be productive. The F: partition is loaded with Internet applications and is left over from our Windows 98 days and isn't used for much now. G: holds the system swap file and the system temporary directory.

What we have done is remove D:\, F:\, and G:\ directories from the System catalog. The C:\ directory was also removed and we added the C:\Windows, and the C:\Program Files directories.

We left E:\ intact and just added a couple of directories on the E: partition that we wanted to exclude from indexing. view the results

The Actual Steps To Adjust The Indexing Service

note: To make any changes to the Indexing Service you must be using an account with Administrator rights. You can use the Indexing Service from any account.

We found that the easiest way to open Indexing Service is from Search->Preferences->Add/Remove Index Service->Change Indexing Service Settings.

When the Indexing Service opens you will see one or two catalogs. We will be working with the System catalog only. Double-click the System catalog. Double-click Directories. We now have a list of directories that are either included or excluded from indexing. You can delete existing directories or change their properties. Basically you can include or exclude the directory from indexing. You can also add a directory. Adding and modifying a directory use the same form.

  • To add a directory go to Action menu -> New -> Directory. For each directory that you include or exclude, all of its subdirectories are also included or excluded.
  • To delete a directory: Select the directory and delete.
  • To modify a directory listing double-click the directory.

That's really all you need to know to use the Indexing Service. At a minimum you can leave it as it is and search away.

Enabling NTFS Partitions For Indexing

If you are unable to index a NTFS partition go to the properties page for the partition by opening Windows Explorer, right-clicking the partition, select Properties and check Allow Indexing Service to index this disk for fast searching.