Windows 10: Search contents of files with dynamic extensions

  1.    07 Oct 2016 #1

    Search contents of files with dynamic extensions


    Hello,

    Let me preface this by saying that I do not have administrator rights to the machine I'm asking about. I will need to get IT Support to actually fix this for me, but they sort of looked at me with their eyes glazed over when I tried to explain it to them. So, I figured I'd see if anyone here can give me some step-by-step instructions that I can provide to the folks with the password so that we can get this working.

    We have systems that pass information back and forth via xml. Periodically, I have to find a certain file, and the information that I have is never part of the file name. The folders in question have "Allow files in this folder to have contents indexed in addition to file properties" checked, and the files within the folders have "Allow this file to have contents indexed in addition to file properties" checked. The folders are on a network share, and System has Full Control.

    When I search for something that I know is in the contents of a file, nothing is found. I believe this has to do with the way windows searches various file types. I know that this is configurable in the Indexing Options (which I don't have access to), but here is the part I don't know how to handle.

    When the systems exchange the xml files, they append a number to it. Unfortunately, it's appended to the file extension. Here's an example of what the files look like in one of the folders:


    Click image for larger version. 

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    (hopefully that image is bigger in the post than it is in the compose window. can't figure out how to resize it.)

    The file extensions are things like:

    XML_4501316
    XML_4504951
    XML_4624566

    It would be impossible to add every file extension to the Indexing Options list. So, my question is, does anyone know a way that Windows 10 can be configured so that I can search the contents of these files? And can it be done in one fell swoop by the IT Support group such that it works after that? (i.e. a solution that requires me to change a setting before I search every time won't work.)

    If it matters; Win10Pro, 64 bit (I think they're all 64, but just in case).

    Thanks to anyone who has a suggestion. I would love a solution that doesn't require me to open hundreds of files to ctrl + f in them.

    Mike
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. axe0's Avatar
    Posts : 11,214
    Windows 10 Pro
       07 Oct 2016 #2

    Hi mikelee101,

    When you search in explorer there is a tab added (see pic below)
    In the 'Search' tab, click 'Advanced options' and choose 'File contents' from the list.
    Attachment 104861
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3.    08 Oct 2016 #3

    Hi there

    Not sure if i've understood the question - but if I have can't you do a generic search on *-xml-* or something like that.

    Another possibility is to import the whole kybosh into EXCEL and then you've got any way of searching etc.

    IMO it seems a bit crazy having these files transmitted as individual files -- surely some sort of Database is better then you've got SQL and other querying methods available --but without knowing the applications it's difficult to know. (SAP PI/XI being used for file transfer maybe ?? or similar for information exchange between systems).

    I'd have a look first at using EXCEL --seems the easiest IMO.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4.    08 Oct 2016 #4

    Hi, Locate32 indexed search can at least find your extensions using a wild card search:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I don't know if other tools like Everything and Ultrasearch can do that (more modern).

    All allow indexed search of files to be done based on fast indexing. The index is updated automatically + manually.

    Locate32 can also search text content (not indexed unlike Windows search).
    (I happened to use txt not xml - will work equally).
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5.    08 Oct 2016 #5

    axe0 said: View Post
    Hi mikelee101,

    When you search in explorer there is a tab added (see pic below)
    In the 'Search' tab, click 'Advanced options' and choose 'File contents' from the list.
    Attachment 104861

    Thanks Axe0. However, that option is already checked. That option only tells explorer how to search in unindexed locations. Since the location I'm searching is indexed, then explorer looks at file contents by default. Unfortunately, it only looks at file contents of file types you tell it to look at, and since I have all these dynamic file types (i.e. extensions) it gets confused. For what it's worth, I can find files by contents in those same folders if they are other file types (.bak for example), so I know the functionality is working. It's just the inability to search contents of file types I can't explicitly specify that's muddying up the waters, so to speak.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6.    08 Oct 2016 #6

    dalchina said: View Post

    I don't know if other tools like Everything and Ultrasearch can do that (more modern).

    All allow indexed search of files to be done based on fast indexing. The index is updated automatically + manually.

    Locate32 can also search text content (not indexed unlike Windows search).
    (I happened to use txt not xml - will work equally).
    Thank you dalchina. Everything says it does not search file contents, and Locate32 says it's not designed to, but says "it has a primitive feature to do this." Ultrasearch, however, looks very promising. I'll need to test drive it on my home computer (where I can install stuff) and if it looks like it fits the bill ask the password people to put it on my work computer.

    Thank you for the suggestions. I'll let you know how it/they pan out.

    Mike
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


 

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