Windows 7 / Getting Started

Understanding the Catalog

The catalog contains the results of the indexing process running on the local computer. Each Windows 7 computer has a single catalog that is located by default in the Search subfolder under the %SystemDrive%\ProgramData\Microsoft folder. (You must make hidden files visible to view the ProgramData folder and its contents.) The catalog contains three main types of information:

  • The full-text index of all content that has been crawled by the indexer.
  • The property store, which is a Jet database that contains the properties of files that have been indexed. (The Windows 7 property schema is used to decide which properties are cached.)
  • Configuration files that control how the indexer works. (Additional configuration settings are stored in the registry.)

Although the catalog indexes items for all users who use the computer, the property store contains security descriptors for each item. Thus the indexer can security-trim the results of queries against the index so that the results returned include only items that the user who is performing the query can access.

Note The location of the catalog can be changed using either Indexing Options in Control Panel or Group Policy. For more information, see the section titled "Configuring the Index" later in this tutorial.

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In this tutorial:

  1. Managing Search
  2. Search and Indexing Enhancements
  3. Search in Windows XP
  4. Search in Windows Vista
  5. Search in Windows 7
  6. Understanding the Windows Search Versions
  7. Search Versions Included in Windows 7 and Windows Vista
  8. Search Versions Included in Windows Server 2008
  9. Search Versions Available for Earlier Versions of Windows
  10. How Windows Search Works
  11. Understanding Search Engine Terminology
  12. Windows Search Engine Processes
  13. Enabling the Indexing Service
  14. Windows Search Engine Architecture
  15. Understanding the Catalog
  16. Default System Exclusion Rules
  17. Understanding the FANCI Attribute
  18. Default Indexing Scopes
  19. Initial Configuration
  20. Understanding the Indexing Process
  21. Modifying IFilter Behavior
  22. How Indexing Works
  23. Rebuilding the index
  24. Viewing Indexing Progress
  25. Understanding Remote Search
  26. Managing Indexin
  27. Configuring the Index
  28. Configuring the Index Location Using Group Policy
  29. Configuring Indexing Scopes and Exclusions Using Group Policy
  30. Configuring Offline Files Indexing
  31. Configuring Indexing of Encrypted Files
  32. Configuring Indexing of Encrypted Files Using Control Panel
  33. Configuring Indexing of Similar Words
  34. Configuring Indexing of Text in TIFF Image Documents
  35. Other Index Policy Settings
  36. Using Search
  37. Configuring Search Using Folder Options
  38. Configuring What to Search
  39. Configuring How To Search
  40. Using Start Menu Search
  41. Searching Libraries
  42. Advanced Query Syntax
  43. Using Federated Search
  44. Deploying Search Connectors
  45. Troubleshooting Search and Indexing Using the Built-in Troubleshooter