by Barry Dysert
(last updated July 11, 2016)
I've found File Explorer to be one of the handiest utilities within Windows that there is. I always have at least one File Explorer window open at all times, and often times there are a few on my screen. Once of the nice features of File Explorer is its ability to search for files, and content within files, that are in the current folder. If you have folders that contain hundreds or thousands of files, using File Explorer's search capability will save you a great deal of time. Here is a picture of File Explorer with its search box circled: (See Figure 1.)
Figure 1. File Explorer.
So your current folder is the Projects folder. Let's say you know you wrote a ReadMe.txt file to accompany one of your projects, but you've forgotten which one. Since the File Explorer search is recursive, it can search the entire tree of subdirectories under Projects. Click in the search box (where it says "Search Projects") and start typing (without quotes) "ReadMe.txt". Depending on the size of the Projects tree, it's quite likely that the search will return immediately with the found file highlighted: (See Figure 2.)
Figure 2. Results of a file search.
You can now open the file, edit it, delete it, etc. And you found it much faster than if you would have navigated through all the subdirectories looking for it.
File Explorer's search can also find content within certain types of files. Let's say that you have a ReadMe.txt file associated with each of your programs. However, one of your programs is obsolete and you've indicated that in its ReadMe file. You can search for the word "obsolete" and you'll be immediately taken to the file containing that piece of text.
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