Microsoft did integrate search right across the operating system in Windows Vista but restricted access to Windows Search technologies only.
Windows Search provided decent performance, but just wasn’t as fast or efficient as Google Desktop Search or other third-party search programs at the time.
Google protested against the restrictions in Vista that Microsoft implemented, as it could not be set as the default program for search on Windows Vista initially.
Microsoft’s response was as of Vista Service Pack 1 to allow third-party applications to be set as the default for searching within Windows.
SP1 includes a number of changes which allow computer manufacturers and consumers to select a default desktop search program similar to the way they currently select defaults for third-party web browsers and media players.
That means that in addition to the numerous ways a user could access a third party search solution in Windows Vista, they can now get to their preferred search results from additional entry points in the Start Menu and Explorer Windows in Windows Vista with SP1.
The one and half years it took to release Service Pack 1 gave Microsoft time to also develop Windows Search 4.0 which improves substantially on its previous incarnations, and is available as a free download for both XP and Vista.
You’ll find Search 4.0 to be much faster at indexing your computer, and searching. In fact I personally wouldn’t even bother using Google desktop. However if you still prefer to use it then here is how you can set it as your default search through the ‘Default Programs’ application accessible through the start menu or control panel.
Simply tap on the Windows-key, type default programs, and select the result that opens up. There you may make programs the default including third-party search programs.
Have any of you chosen to use Google desktop instead of Windows Search? Would you say one is better then the other?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.