Tips for Searching
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At its simplest, a query can be just a word or a phrase. But with the tips on this page, you can expand the focus of your query to give you more complete results.
Look for words with the same prefix. For example, in your query form type
key* to find key, keying,
keyhole, keyboard, and so on.
Search for all forms of a word. For example, in the form type
sink** to find sink, sinking,
sank, and sunk.
Search with the keyword NEAR, rather than
AND, for words close to each other. For example, both of
these queries, system and manager and system near
manager, look for the words system and manager
on the same page. But with NEAR, the returned pages are
ranked in order of proximity: The closer together the words are, the higher
the rank of that page.
Refine your queries with the AND NOT keywords to exclude certain text from your search. For example, if you want to find all instances of surfing but not the Net, write the following query:
surfing AND NOT the Net
Abbott OR Costello
This query finds all pages that mention Abbott or Costello or both.
Put quotation marks around keywords if you want the search engine to take
them literally. For instance, if you type the following query:
"system near manager"
the search engine will literally look for the complete phrase system near manager. But if you type the same query without the quotation marks:
system near manager
the search engine searches all documents for the words system and manager.
Use Free Text Queries if you want to enter
queries using natural language. The search engine will examine your query,
extract nouns and noun phrases and construct a query for you. With free text
queries you can enter any text you want, from a proper question, to a string
of words and phrases, without worrying about the query language. For example,
if you type in the following query:
"How do I use the parallel port?"
The search engine will create a query for you automatically and begin the search.
Note that when you're using free text queries, the regular query language features are disabled and keywords such as AND, OR, and NEAR are interpreted as normal words.
These hints will get you started, but for more complex queries and more examples, see the Query Language page.