Last updated
15 September 2010







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Search Tips







Tips on using the Search facility

To get more specific search results, try using the following tips:

* Check spelling - Make sure your search terms are spelled correctly. The search engine will attempt to find words that sound similar to your search terms - but it is always best to spell the search terms correctly.

* Use multiple words - This will return more refined results than a search from a single word. For example, typing Blonde Jokes will return more relevant results than typing just Jokes. (Keep in mind that relevant results are returned even if they don't contain all query terms.)

* Use similar words - The more similar words you use in a search, the more relevant results will be to the words that you are searching for.

Example: safe secure privacy security

* Use appropriate capitalization - Capitalize proper nouns such as the name of a person. Lower-case words will match any words of any case. For example, typing search will return all documents containing the words search, Search, and SEARCH. Typing Search, however, will instruct the search engine to look only for the capitalized word.

* Use quotation marks to find words which must appear adjacent to each other, for example, "Blonde Jokes". Otherwise, the search results will include the word Blonde and the word Jokes, but not necessarily in that order. The words may appear anywhere, and in any order, within the document.

* Use Boolean plus (+) or minus (-) operators - Use a plus sign when your search term or phrase must appear in the search results. Use a minus sign to indicate undesirable term(s). The plus sign tells the search engine that a certain word or phrase is required in the search results, and a minus sign indicates that a word or phrase must be absent in the search results.

Note: A phrase must be contained within quotation marks. Leave no spaces between the plus or minus sign and the term.

For example, searching for +jokes -blondes will return results that are about jokes, but not about blondes.

* Field searches allow you to create specific searches for words that appear in a specific part of a document. A field search can be performed on body text (body:), title text (title:), alt text (alt:), meta description (desc:), meta key words (keys:), URL (url:) or meta target key words (target:). The field name should be in lower-case and immediately followed by a colon. There should be no spaces between the colon and the search term.

Note: The field searches can only be followed by a word or phrase. Phrases must be contained within quotation marks.

For example, searching for title:jokes will find pages with jokes in the title of the page.

Wildcard searches can expand the number of matches for a particular request. The
* character is used as the wildcard character.

For instance, searching for wh* will find the words what, why, when, whether, and any other word that starts with wh.

Searching for *her* will find the words here, whether, together, gathering, and any other word that contains her anywhere in the word.

Wildcards may be combined with the standard plus (+) and minus (-) modifiers, quotes for phrases, as well as the field search specifiers.

+wh* -se*ch will find all pages which have a word that starts with wh and which does not contain a word that starts with se and ends with ch.

"wh* are" will find the phrases where are, what are, why are, etc.