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Bing search engineBing as you probably already know is a search engine offering from Microsoft. While people believed and still believe that it is difficult to topple Google as the dominant search engine, the Bing search engine has been gaining ground and offering on the edge functionality. So much so that many believe that the recent sidebar and ability to add background images by Google has been motivated by the popularity of such features on Bing.

As for the quality of search, the results are comparable if not better than Google’s results in most cases. In any case, you can certainly expect Bing to stay around for quite some time unlike other search engines that have tried to challenge Google.


So while it is around, here are a few tips and tricks that you can use to search even better on the Bing search engine:

Turn Off The Background Image

Bing search engine

If for any reason you want to turn off the background image, you can do so by visiting www.bing.com/?rb=0. For convenience you can also bookmark this page so that you are taken to it automatically the next time you want to search on Bing.

Generate An RSS Feed For Search Results

Bing search engine

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You can easily create an RSS feed for search results of any query by simply appending ‘&format=rss‘ at the end of the search query in the address bar of the browser.

Get A Weather Forecast

bing search tips

You can get weather forecasts from the Bing search box by typing the name of the city followed by weather or forecast. For example, New Delhi forecast would give you the weather forecast for New Delhi.

Additionally you can suffix units of measurement to get the results according to your preference. New Delhi weather celsius for example would give you the same result but in Celsius this time.

Calculations, Units & Currency Conversion

bing search tricks

Google does it and now Bing does it as well. Nothing fancy about conversions. You key in the value or equation and the units and the Bing search engine will give you the solution as the result of the search query. 220 km in miles would return 137.76. Similarly currency conversions and mathematical equations work just as well.

Add Your Preference For A Particular Result Type

You can use the prefer:<keyword> option to give additional weightage to results that contain the keyword. Say you are looking for content management systems, but you are interested in PHP CMS(es) all the more. In such a case you can search for content management system prefer:php to refine your search and give more weightage or importance to PHP CMS(es).

Track Flights

bing search

Using Bing you can also track flights easily. All that is required is the airline name and the flight number. Enter ‘flight status‘ in the search box and Bing will prompt you for the airline and flight number. Key them in and click on get status to get the status of a flight.

Search Sites With A Specific Filetype

You can add contains:<fileExtension> to any search query to return results only from the sites that contain a file of the said extension. For example, mercurial guide contains:pdf would return results from sites which have a PDF file hosted on them.

Limit Search Results To A Specific Country

Search engines by default provide you with an option to search only pages from your country. Using the local version of Bing, I for example get the option to search only pages from India. But what if you want to search webpages from other countries?

You can use the ‘loc‘ operator to achieve this. archaeology loc:US for example will return pages containing archeology, but limit the results to pages from the US only.

Get Live Stock Quotes

microsoft bing search engine

You can enter the ticker symbol along with the word stock to get the stock quotes. AAPL stock for example would return the stock quote for Apple.

See If Your Site Is Indexed & How Many Pages

You can quickly check to see if your site has been indexed by Bing by using the “url” keyword. url:yoursite.com will let you see if your site has been indexed by Bing or not. On the other hand if you want to see how many pages of your site have been indexed you can use the “site” keyword along with your site name. site:yoursite.com would return all the pages from your site that are present in Bing’s index.

Its your turn now. You might have discovered little tricks of your own with the Bing search engine that have not been mentioned in the article. Feel free to share them with us in the comments. We would love to hear about them.

  1. Aibek
    June 12, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    The video search on Bing is by far the best video search I have came across.

  2. fruitgeek.wordpress.com
    June 10, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    Here's one more feature of Bing: You can view Wikipedia caches at work better than you can on Google. Check it out http://fruitgeek.wordpress.com...

  3. fruitgeek.wordpress.com
    June 10, 2010 at 7:18 pm

    Here's one more feature of Bing: You can view Wikipedia caches at work better than you can on Google. Check it out http://fruitgeek.wordpress.com/2010/06/04/wikipedia-at-work-what-bing-can-do/

  4. fruitgeek.wordpress.com
    June 10, 2010 at 7:17 pm

    The RSS feature could be used to add a feed to blogs like Tumblr that don't have one.

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