Find Anything Using Enhanced Search Mode in Windows 10
Enabling Enhanced search mode in Windows 10 makes finding files on your PC quicker and easier. The default Windows search mode limits searches to key folders and libraries such as your desktop, Documents, and Pictures.
But what if the file you’re looking for is safely tucked away somewhere in your PC that you can’t remember? That’s where Enhanced search comes in. Enhanced search is a handy tool that helps you to locate any file on your PC. In this article, you’ll learn more about Enhanced search and how to use it in Windows 10.
What Is Enhanced Search Mode in Windows 10?
Windows 10 features several search settings that you can use to look for files, apps, and settings. For instance, if you go to your Microsoft account settings (Win + I), you’ll see the Find a setting search bar. This allows you to search for different settings such as system, devices, phone, network and internet, and personalization, among others.
Enhanced search is another search option within Windows 10. As the name implies, Enhanced search enhances your local search capabilities by allowing you to search your entire PC directly from the Windows search box, with no third-party apps or tools needed. Enabling Enhanced search greatly improves your search success rate.
The Windows default search mode, on the other hand, excludes certain locations in your PC or drives when searching. Although it provides results faster than Enhanced search, the search range is limited.
What You Need to Know Before Enabling Enhanced Search Mode in Windows 10
There are a few things to note about enabling Enhanced search mode in Windows 10. For instance, if you’re using a laptop you’ll need to connect it to the mains to initiate the initial crawl and indexing of your data. This is because the process could take a while, and during the initial setup, Windows will consume a lot of power with intense CPU activity.
While you can still use your PC while this is ongoing in the background, doing so can delay the indexing process. As such, it’s best if you perform these steps during downtime or if you don’t intend to use your PC for a little while.
How to Enable Enhanced Search Mode in Windows 10
Here’s how to enable Enhanced search mode in Windows 10 so you can find anything you’re looking for on your PC.
1. Begin by opening the Settings app. To do so, press the Windows key, or click the Windows Start menu.
2. From the start menu options, click either Settings or PC Settings. Alternatively, press Win + I to go to your Microsoft account settings page.
4. You’ll be taken to the Permissions and History page. By default, Windows Search will search the web, apps, settings, and files to give you relevant results. You can change this for more accurate and faster searches. To do so, click Searching Windows in the left side pane.
5. Under Indexing Status, you’ll see the number of indexed items and pending items. Underneath it is Find My Files settings. By default, this is set to Classic, which only searches your libraries and desktop, and other customized search locations. To enable Enhanced searching, select Enhanced.
Congratulations, you’ve just enabled Enhanced search mode in Windows 10. This will trigger your PC to start indexing all the files, folders, and drives in the system.
How to Manage Enhanced Search Mode in Windows 10
You can manage your Enhanced search settings in Windows 10. For instance, you can add folders to be excluded from the Enhanced search. If you do so, Enhanced search will bypass all the files in the blacklisted folders and drives. You can reverse this by removing them from excluded folders.
From the settings, you can also change the indexer performance and enable advanced search indexer settings. These will improve how Enabled search crawls and indexes your information.
How to Add Excluded Folders in Enhanced Search
By default, Enhanced search will ignore or exclude certain folders/locations. This is done in order to fast-track indexing and prioritize power and system resource management.
However, you can modify your excluded folder settings at any time. To do so, press Win + I > Search > Searching Windows. In the right panel, go down to Excluded Folders. Now, click on either the plus sign or Add an excluded folder.
Choose the folder and click Select Folder. The selected folder will be instantly added to your excluded folders. Although this will speed up indexing, make your searches faster and use up less power and system resources, you may be unable to find what you’re looking for if they’re inside the excluded folders.
Related: How Does AI Help You Search Better?
How to Remove Excluded Folders in Enhanced Search Mode
If you decide to remove a folder from excluded folders, here’s what to do. Press Win + I > Search > Searching Windows. Scroll down to the Excluded Folders section and click on the folder you want to remove. Now, click the Remove excluded folder button.
The folder will be removed instantly. Removing folders from excluded folders will slow down indexing in Enhanced search. It will also use up more power and system resources, but on the plus side, your searches will be more accurate.
If you want Enhanced search to respect your current power settings when indexing, click the Indexer Performance toggle button.
You can turn this off at any time if you choose to.
Advanced Search Indexer Settings
You can use the advanced search indexer settings to further fine-tune how and where Windows will search. To do so, click on Advanced Search Indexer Settings.
Now, select any location from the available options to index. Click Close once the indexing is complete.
Found What You’re Looking For?
Search is a major activity we all engage in whether you’re searching for answers on Google, or for files on your Windows 10 PC. And being able to find what you’re looking for is self-satisfying.
Start exploring Enhanced search in Windows 10 today and see what you can find with its enhanced search capabilities. Remember to tweak excluded folders, indexer performance, and advanced search indexer settings as needed.
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September 15, 2021 at 10:19AM