Changes to Vista's desktop search are coming

Written by Phil Cogar

September 14, 2007 // 8:39 a.m.

Tags: #antitrust #google #microsoft #search

Microsoft must be getting awfully tired of antitrust lawsuits. So much so that the company is changing the way the desktop search operates in order to satisfy concerns from Google. Coming in SP1 for Vista will be the ability for users to set a third-party search engine as the default desktop search.

This new option will allow you to choose just what search engine you would like to use when you're operating inside of the OS. So say for instance that you preferred to use Google Desktop over Vista search. Once installed, you would have the ability to use Google Desktop in the Start menu in place of Vista's search. Vista's search, however, will remain the default search method in Windows Explorer.

Developers will need to register their search service with Microsoft using a new protocol that is included in SP1.

In order to help those developers understand the changes that are being made, Microsoft is providing three documents this week. A knowledge base article was posted on Wednesday and a downloadable document was posted over at Microsoft downloads. The third document is available over on Microsoft's Developer Network site.

From a business standpoint, I can understand why Google and other developers would want to give users the option to use a different search programme. From a user standpoint, however, I don't understand the point in installing another application when the Vista search works perfectly fine as it is. In the past month of using Vista, I have yet to have any problems from the build in desktop search engine or the indexing service.

What are your thoughts on this one? Will you be completely replacing the Vista desktop search with Google Desktop or will you leave it how it is. Discuss this confounding issue with us over in the forums or in the comment section below.

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