Windows 10: Search file names question!

Discus and support Search file names question! in Windows 10 Support to solve the problem; Hello! Currently, when I search within folders, it only searches the beginning of the file names. Is there a way to search within the file names?... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Support' started by rosy89, May 27, 2016.

  1. rosy89 Win User

    Search file names question!


    Hello!

    Currently, when I search within folders, it only searches the beginning of the file names.
    Is there a way to search within the file names? Like you can when you press ctrl + f in a body of text.
    Thank you!!

    :)
     
    rosy89, May 27, 2016
    #1
  2. VictorJ27 Win User

    Search box: Search in folder names, file names and application names by default

    Check for updates on your device. If it's working before, possible it's a bug from the windows version you're using now.
     
    VictorJ27, May 27, 2016
    #2
  3. cosmik Win User
    Search box: Search in folder names, file names and application names by default

    It never ceases to amaze me how Microsoft can get one thing perfect, and then manage to ruin it more and more: in Windows 7 I used Windows search to startup anything. In fact, it was so good that I did not use folder navigation to find a file. I just wrote
    part of the filename, it appeared in the results and presto: I launched the file from the file search results.

    Things got worse with 8 and 8.1. For some reason they were fixed the initial search in Windows 10. Only to be ruined in the later versions.

    As it is right now, if I want to search for a folder that start with xyz, I have to open the search box and type "folders:xyz". Same thing if I want to search for a filename that starts with abc, whereas I must prefix the search with "files:", as in "files:abc"

    For the love of the Superior Being Out There (SBOT) can I trip the registry somehow to search
    by default in both of these types, in addition to the other types it looks for? Is there a guide out there that shows how to enable search in everything tbh?

    Thanks in advance for any info provided!
     
    cosmik, May 27, 2016
    #3
  4. dalchina New Member

    Search file names question!

    Hello, do you mean the search field in explorer?

    You can use regular expressions and much more.. e.g.
    *music?2

    would match names with any number of characters, music, 1 character and 2
    Advanced Query Syntax (Windows)

    Not sure that's your question.

    If by 'within the file names' you mean also search the file content, then I would recommend Locate32 (freeware).
    This does a fast index of your files and folders, and the search fields and syntax support searching text file content as well as detailed specification of the names. I use this regularly.

    (Everything by voidtools is similar and more modern, but does not support searching file contents).

    Using explorer search to find file content
    This is supported but little known, I think
    See 'Using Windows Search" here:
    How to Search the Content of Your Files on Windows

    You will find e.g. doc, rtf, docx, txt marked as 'search contents' as well.
    So open a folder that is indexed, which contains some file types like that.
    Let's say one of them contains
    765432abc

    Type
    "765432abc" in explorer's search field including "".
    (Refer to Advanced Query Syntax (Windows) )
    Your file should be listed.
     
    dalchina, May 27, 2016
    #4
  5. BevHoward Win User
    Perfect question for me to start off with... since I had to sit down a couple of days ago and find the answers myself... it ain't easy ;-)

    A big change in file searches that began with win7 was that windows not only searched for filenames, but would return every file that contained what you were searching for that was contained in any file. For example, search for "shirt" and not only would you get filenames containing "shirt" you would get any file that contained the word "shirt" in the file.

    There is unfortunately no way to change this default behavior, but you can add "modifiers" to your search such as;
    name:shirt
    which will return only files that contain "shirt" in the filename at the beginning or after a space or underline in the filename.

    The windows documentation is wrong about this modifer term... it states that you must use "filename:" but "name:" is functionally identical... four characters less at least.

    Note, that if you are seeing only results that begin with your search term, remember that the column sort may be grouping them so that other filenames containing what you are searching for may not be easy to spot.

    You can also specify folder names to search such as;
    in:mywork

    There are many other modifier terms that can be used when searching. You don't have to learn them because when you use file explorer's menu/search when you select on, windows will type out the modifier phrase in the search box.

    More on this at;
    Advanced Query Syntax (Windows)

    I'll post more findings if anyone expresses interest.

    Beverly Howard
     
    BevHoward, May 27, 2016
    #5
  6. BevHoward Win User
    Oops.. color me wrong on this one... turns out that the above syntax works only if there is a space or underline before the string you are searching for in the filename. I do remember that I found an option in the past... will report back.

    Beverly Howard
     
    BevHoward, May 27, 2016
    #6
  7. BevHoward Win User
    Found it...

    Turns out that the moidifer "name:" modifier is not the same as "filename:"

    Plus, you have to use a wildcard to match strings embedded within the filename.

    so, use the "filename:" modifier with a wildcard

    For example, searching for filenames that contain "tips" somewhere in the name use the syntax;

    filename:*tips

    Sorry for the error,
    Beverly Howard
     
    BevHoward, May 27, 2016
    #7
  8. dalchina New Member

    Search file names question!

    Thing is though, the files have to be indexed, + the syntax is convoluted.

    Therefore the 3rd party tool is definitely my preference, allowing specification by size, date, filename etc etc and then also by content.

    Now... can Windows search search text-based pdf's? Er... actually yes, along with htm, html...
     
    dalchina, May 27, 2016
    #8
  9. BevHoward Win User
    My experience is that windows search will find strings in pdf files. This will obviously depend on the pdf's encryption and other file settings.

    Not only that, and not sure if it is still in place, but search used to find strings in TIF files using OCR... this was because TIF is a widely used format to send FAX files received by computers and web services.

    Another useful option is to put descriptive comments in image files' "comment" "EXIF" and "IPTC" fields... notably JPG files comments. Windows search will find those strings making image searches much easier.

    Beverly Howard
     
    BevHoward, Apr 4, 2018
    #9
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Search file names question!

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