I’ve never really liked Windows Search; it’s slow, clunky and imprecise. Its file indexing can be intrusive and sometimes there are just too many irrelevant results to scroll through. Perhaps it’s my lack of skill using it and perhaps it’s now all a lot better in Windows 10. However, for some years now my first choice of desktop search tool has been Mythicsoft’s FileLocator Pro, the more mature sibling of the excellent free utility Agent Ransack.
I was first drawn to using FileLocator Pro when I wanted a way to search through a large MS Outlook PST archive without loading it into Outlook. In fact, to search a PST file using FileLocator Pro, you don’t even need to have Outlook installed. When searching through the PST file, FileLocator Pro will identify each individual item within the file as an email, a contact or a calendar item and treat it as a separate file. To make best use of this feature, rather than use the file name filter field i.e. *.pst, there is a dedicated switch to select ‘Outlook PST/MSG files’ on the options tab.
FileLocator Pro doesn’t use file indexing saved to a database but is nevertheless surprisingly quick and accurate when simply searching for files, particularly when using well-formed search criteria. In fact now that I’ve upgraded my PC to using an SSD as my main drive I don’t want the extra wear of frequent writing to disc that comes with indexed searches.
FileLocator Pro can be as simple or complicated as you need it to be with either an Expert or a Basic operations interface selected using the ‘Expert User’ toggle.
- Selection of the search criteria including file name filter, expression types, optional containing text, file size and modified dates etc.
- File list view for results
- Content view of file selected from results list including built-in text viewer.
FileLocator Pro provides enhanced support for searching and viewing text within Office, PDF files and compressed archives (i.e. zip, rar, 7z, jar, tar and others).
The options for searching for files and within files are too numerous to cover here but needless to say if you want to do some serious file searching then FileLocator Pro definitely has it covered.
Mythicsoft FileLocator Pro V7.5 is priced at $49.95 for a Standard license (for use on up to 3 Windows installations per licensed named user e.g. work, home, laptop) and can be downloaded with a 30 day trial at https://www.mythicsoft.com/filelocatorpro/download