Search tips can help you narrow your results.
To do simple keyword search, you can enter one or more query terms (keywords). The search engine returns documents that contain all of those keywords or variations of the keywords. If you can search more than one collection, choose the collection that you want to search from the links on the search page or the drop-down list on the Advanced Search page.
For example, if you enter king, the search engine returns all documents that contain the word king or kings. If you enter the query king lear, the search engine returns documents that contain the terms king and lear.
To see more precise results, use more specific keywords. For example, use French roast coffee rather than coffee. Or use Kauai hiking tours rather than Hawaiian vacations.
If a simple keyword search returns too many documents that are not what you are looking for, you can use operators to refine your search.
Use the minus sign (-) to exclude terms. For example, if you want to find documents with the term lear and you do not want to see documents with edward, enter the query lear -edward.
The minus sign (-) also applies to a term and its variants. For example, the query -lion will exclude documents that contain the word lions
The equivalent search option on the Advanced Search page is Show results with none of these words.
If you want to ensure that terms appear in results exactly in the sequence in which you typed them, you can use double quotation marks. For example, if you want to see documents with the term king lear exactly as the query and you do not want matches on related phrases such as kings lear or king and queen lear, enter "king lear". Note that the search is still case-insensitive, but term variants are not considered matches.
The equivalent search option on the Advanced Search page is Show results with the exact phrase.
Requiring that at least one of the terms appears
The Boolean operator OR specifies that at least one of the terms in a query must appear in the returned document. For example, the query (othello OR otello) returns documents that contain the term othello or otello.
The equivalent search option on the Advanced Search page is Show results with any of these words.
You can also use the Boolean operators AND, OR, or NOT in combinations by using parentheses. For example, the query cougar OR (jaguar AND NOT car) returns documents with the terms cougar or jaguar but not car.
The AND, OR, and NOT operators must be entered in all capital letters. Use parentheses for grouping.
The Advanced Search option Show results with all of these words is equivalent to specifying terms with a Boolean AND operator.
The wildcard character (*) helps you find documents when you do not know the full spelling, or if you want to find variations of the term. For example, the query czech* returns documents with the terms czech, czechoslovakia, czechoslovakian, czech republic, and other possible results.
You can also use the wildcard character in a phrase search. For example, the query "John * Kennedy" returns documents with the terms John Fitzgerald Kennedy and John F Kennedy, but not John Kennedy. Or the query Mi*l Gorbachev will return Mikhail Gorbachev.
Adding a wildcard character to the beginning of a query (for example, *zech) might cause the search engine to take longer to return results.
You can use metadata terms to narrow your search. The available metadata terms are determined by your search administrator.
On the Advanced Search page, you can choose from several common metadata search terms in the Show results with section by selecting a term in a drop-down list.
- url: For example, the query url:www.example.com returns the documents that contain www.example.com in their URL. You can also search for part of a file path, for example, url:c\:\\documents. Note that the colon must be escaped with a backslash (\).
- title: For example, the query title:venice returns documents whose titles contain Venice. The query title:(shakespeare venice) returns documents with the titles The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare or William Shakespeare's Othello, the Moor of Venice.
- doctype: The metadata tag doctype: refers to MIME types, such as text/html, text/xml, text/richtext, or text/plain. For example, the query doctype:text/html returns HTML files, and doctype:text/plain returns plain text files. Use doctype: to search for file types that are not included in the File Format option on the Advanced Search page.
- fileext:You can search for files based on the file type extension. For example, fileext:doc returns Microsoft® Word documents, and fileext:xls returns Microsoft Excel spreadsheet files. Use fileext: to search for file extensions that are not included in the File Format option on the Advanced Search page.
- keywords: Returns documents that include the specified value in the keywords.
- language: For example, language:en returns
documents whose language is automatically identified as English, and language:fr returns
documents whose language is identified as French. You can also use the Document
Languages option on the Advanced Search page
to specify languages for a specific query or permanently set language preferences
on the Language Preferences page.The following table shows supported languages and their associated language codes:
Table 1. Supported language codes Language Code Language Code Language Code Arabic ar Chinese, Simplified zh_CN Chinese, Traditional zh_TW Czech cs Danish da French fr English en Finnish fi German de Greek, Modern el Hebrew he Italian it Japanese ja Korean ko Norwegian no Polish pl Portuguese po Russian ru Spanish es Swedish sv Turkish tr
- owner: Returns documents that include the specified value as the owner.
- author: Returns documents that include the specified value as the author.
- site: Limits the search to the specified Web site, for example, site:ibm.com or site:yahoo.com. The equivalent search option on the Advanced Search page is Site/Domain.
- abstract: A summary of the content of the document. For example, abstract:research returns documents whose Dublin Core abstract metadata includes the word research.
- creator: An entity primarily responsible for creating the document. Returns documents that include the specified value in the Dublin Core creator metadata.
- description:A description of the resource. Returns documents that include the specified value in the Dublin Core description metadata.
- language: Returns documents that include the specified value in the Dublin Core language metadata.
- subject: Returns documents that include the specified value in the Dublin Core subject metadata.
- title: Returns documents that include the specified value in the Dublin Core title metadata.
You can use parentheses with metadata search operators to indicate that only those keywords must be present, but the order of the keywords does not matter. For example, title:(cats dogs) will return documents that contain both cats and dogs in the title in no particular order. If you want an exact match, you must use double quotation marks. For example, title:"cats dogs" will return documents that contain both cats and dogs in the title in that order (cats before dogs).
You can use Boolean operators with metadata search operators. For example, author:shakespeare AND title:othello, or author:irs AND abstract:(401k OR TDSP). If you specify more than one metadata element without specifying a Boolean operator, the search assumes an AND operator.
The search results display the metadata that was used in the search.