Assume you have a lot of documents and data. Further you use OpenOffice instead of Microsoft Work and Thunderbird instead of Outlook. And you use an IMAP Email Account instead of a POP3 one.
Since you have so much documents you decide to use one of these fancy Desktop Searches to find things you need faster (and they are definitely very helpful). Then you stumble into problems, since only one of these various Desktop Searches is up to the task. I tried them all – here are my considerations:
- Google Desktop Search: It’s from Google but definitely not the best. Many things you can’t configure easily (not you should not index my whole hard disc) and OpenOffice support is very bad (only beta plugin from March 2005 or so), though I have to admit I checked out GDS 2 and there is alread GDS 3 – but from the homepage it seems, that OpenOffice support is still shaky.
- Windows Desktop Search: better than GDS (better to configure) and also searches the applications, but no support for OpenOffice and Thunderbird. You have to install third party add-ins(OO, TB), which are not up to the task.
- Yahoo Desktop Search: much better results, but doesn’t index OpenOffice 2.0 documents. WTF! Hey, OpenDocument is an open standard. Can’t be that difficult.
- Copernic Desktop Search: After waisting a lot of time with the three programs above (and with this, I admit), I finally found THE desktop search which is up to the (my) tasks: it nicely indexes OpenOffice documents and also indexes Thunderbird mailboxes. But beware, that you have to use at least version 1.7, I had some problems with 1.63.
I also should mention that none of the desktop search programs above (even CDS) could index an IMAP account with Thunderbird. But there is a solution. You make the folders you are interested in available for offline reading. You than regularily go into offline mode and tell Thunderbird (popup message) to download all emails which are not already on the hard disk. At least CDS and YDS are than able to index your emails.
So, if you have a lot of OpenOffice programs and read your emails with Thunderbird there is only one solution Copernic Desktop Search. If you have an IMAP account make the folders available for download. Also watch out for the next version of CDS: 2.0 Beta looks very promising.