Lubuntu 12.04 desktop search is Recoll

Desktop search options for Lubuntu 12.04 are not obvious. The Lubuntu Software Center suggests Desktop Search (tracker-gui). I installed the software, but could not determine how to find what I wanted to find - which is text in any opendocument format file, Microsoft Word and Excel files, Thunderbird emails, and HTML files.

Frustrated, I uninstalled tracker-gui and hit the web. There I learned that Google had long ago dropped their namesake desktop search product, although I still use Google Desktop on a Win 7 rig. I also quickly learned that a dog named Beagle had also passed away.

I did see some traffic on a package called recoll, but it was not listed in the software center. Fortunately I have been using Synaptic happily for many years. Recoll was in the repositories. After installation Recoll indexed my hard drive happily and quickly.

After indexing, I stumbled onto the Show Missing Helpers. All of the helpers were also in the repositories. With them on board and index updated, Recoll was searching inside everything. The package is extremely capable and fast.

Note that the default setting is manual index updating, although Recoll can be configured to run as a daemon and index in real time. I prefer the manual indexing as I get to choose when the process executes.

Recoll has happily found text in all of the variety of file types I commonly deploy. I remain unclear why the package is not in the Lubuntu Software Center, or more obviously recommended on Ubuntu sites.

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