Making Windows 7 Search Useful

By default Winodows 7 does not Index a whole lot of files that one could actually find to be useful. It also does not search by the content of those files which makes searching not useful.

This is  a short tutorial to enable indexing and search of all your favorite filetypes and locations with all  your programming code.

First thing to do is ensure that the Windows 7 search service is running

Search for Service (Note: there is a old version of Windows Indexing service.. That is not it. That is for legacy support older windows.)

Next, ensure the Windows Search service starts automatically.

I am not sure what the performance impact of pumping up the indexes on Windows 7 has on non-ssd drives, but so far it actually seems to be running pretty great.

Example search from start menu “mysql_close(”

Search for “Indexing Options”

This is the initial area where you set the folders to monitor for indexing.

Next, select the file types under “Advanced”

For each of your favorite programming extensions select “Index Properties and Content”

Switching Default Folder Search Behavior

Open the start menu search for “Folder”


  • Always search file names and contents

Folder search option

That’s it. After a couple of hours everything should be indexed.

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