If you want to search and locate files on your computer fast, and by fast I mean lightning fast, you must try Locate32.
Locate32 is a desktop seach tool that lets you search for files and folders on your hard drive and other locations with lightning speed. It uses databases to store information about directory structures and then utilizes them when you search for something. If this rings a bell and makes you think about Windows Desktop Search or Google Desktop, then you are not far wrong except that Locate32 is a lot faster and lighter.
Locate32 is portable – you just extract the package (zip or exe) and you are ready to go. Since it uses a database to search the files, make sure that you create the first time database before you search for files. This may take a few minutes depending on your storage capacity.
Once the database is ready you can type in your queries and get instant results. Locate32 also offers you a variety of options while searching to streamline your search:
You can specify the name, wildcards, extension or directory to look in :
You can also specify the minimum or the maximum filesize criteria that the file must satisfy or you can specify the age of the file.
If you really require the advanced stuff, head on over to the advanced tab and you can specify whether you want to search the file names, folder names or both. The type of file i.e. archives, sound files, image files, source files, text files, documents, executables or the plain old search by extension.
Last but not least you can also search the text within the files for a particular word or phrase (which is a little time consuming).
Personally the results are so quick that I seldom specify any options. Just put in a substring that you remember to be in the file name, hit enter and boom the results are already there. If however you need a finely grained search than of course Locate32 provides you with all the options.
There are almost endless options for Locate32. I am going to leave it to you to check them out for yourself because there are simply so many of them. They range from search options to Windows menu integration to keyboard shortcuts to database update schedules.
Locate32 is one of those software apps that you must have on your computer. I highly recommend that you check it out and see if it fits your needs.
What software or features do you use for your searching needs? Would you make the switch to the very lightweight Locate32? Or have you been using the default Windows search or Google Desktop? Let us know in the comments.