Written by WATYF on Friday, 01 December 2006 (6811 hits)
So as if my woes with Office 2007 weren't bad enough, today I discovered a new aspect of my daily Windows usage that has been ruined by Microsoft's latest "improvements" to their software.... and that would be File Searches.
That's right folks... "Searching" is the new thing... it's the way to do everything. Sure, it's faster to put your commonly used apps/files in a standard location and just open them directly, but wouldn't you rather put some criteria into a search box and have it return you a bunch of results, most of which aren't what you're looking for??? Or better yet... how about you put in a very specific set of criteria, and have it return you ABSO-FREAKING-LUTELY NOTHING, even though you know that what you're searching for is right there?
Well... that's what happened to me. Part of the new Office 2007 paradigm involves forcing you to upgrade to Microsoft's new "Desktop Search". They do this by annoying the hell out of you every time you open Outlook with messages about how you need to install Desktop Search, until you finally cave and go download the piece of crap and install it. Not that there's ANY noticeable different in Outlook after you install the "oh so crucial" Desktop Search tool... but hey... I'm sure it's doing something.
So I installed it, and didn't notice any difference (except for having to remove the annoying thing from my Taskbar, and from the Startup menu, so it wasn't running in the background all day long). Yeah... I didn't notice a thing... that is... until I went to do a file search in Explorer.
Now, most of you probably know that one of the most annoying things that Microsoft has ever put out (second only to "Clippy") is that mind-alteringly infuriating, ugly orange dog that tries to "help" you search for files in Windows Explorer. One of the very first things I do after I install Windows XP is turn that stupid thing off, and switch it to the advanced find. That way, you get all "function" and no "fluff".
One of the handy things about the advanced find is that if you're viewing a particular folder in Explorer, and you hit Ctrl-F, it will open the Advanced Find sidebar and set the "Look In:" folder to the folder that you're currently viewing. So, today I was in a particular folder and I wanted to return all the xml documents in that folder. In the past, all I had to do was hit Ctrl-F and type in "*.xml" and hit Enter and boom... there's all my results, just for the folder I was viewing at the time....
...but not so with the amazing new Desktop Search. Now, I hit Ctrl-F and type in "*.xml" and hit Enter and what do I get??? NOTHING!!! That's what. No results at all... I can't even tell what the heck this thing is searching, but it's certainly not searching my hard drive (and definitely not the folder I was viewing). There are a bunch of confusing, nonsensical options up in the search results that allow me to switch from searching "All locations" (whatever that means) to "Files" or "Outlook". I can also choose "Everything" (again... what does that even mean) or "Documents". Of course, none of these options returned any results... so that was pretty handy.
Then... to add insult to injury... at the bottom of the Desktop Search window was a little link that said "Click here to use the Search Companion" with a picture of our old friend, the rabid dog, next to it. Well, I was actually desperate enough to get this thing to work that I actually clicked on that link, and what did it show me?? MY OLD ADVANCED FIND WINDOW!!! That's right folks... after installing the new Desktop Search, I am first presented with an absolutely worthless search that doesn't return me any results... and then, if I click on a different link, it will take me to the old search, which works just fine.
Thanks Microsoft... you're the bestest!!
Btw.... anyone looking to turn off this behavior and return to the old (and so obviously better) way, just follow the instructions here.