Windows Search version 4 beta

! Warning: this post hasn't been updated in over three years and so may contain out of date information.

search.pngMicrosoft released a preview of version 4 of their desktop search a couple of days ago. Apparently it has “fixed most of the reported bugs causing a majority of distractions users have seen since Windows Vista RTM” – according to the Windows Vista blog. I installed it and tried it out. Perhaps it is just me that views the inane “did you find what you wanted” message when nothing was found as a bug, as it is still there. And perhaps it is just me that finds the lack of search option when right-clicking on a drive or folder a distraction? I know I can left click to make it the current folder and then use the search box, but why can’t I have both options?

Perhaps it is just me being reluctant to adapt to a new way of searching. It is certainly faster than the old XP search. And v4 automatically supports source code files and the like, not just office docs and pictures. What we gain with speed though, we seem to lose with usability. The interface is just plain clunky in my view. As a poster on ActiveWin puts it:

“…it still suffers from a confusing interface and occasionally incomprehensible behavior. Microsoft needs to realize that it’s not just speed that’s needed when you search, but intelligence as well…”

Oh well, it’s only a beta. Perhaps if enough people complain, they might make the release version usable.