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Thread: How to SEARCH CPF?

  1. #1
    * The Arctic Moderator * Sigman's Avatar
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    Default How to SEARCH CPF?

    So we all know that vBulletin's "Search" function isn't the best thing since sliced bread. I use a variety of methods to search CPF. Perhaps we can compile a few here in this thread to help each other? As we refine our methods, I'll try and keep this first post edited to reflect them. Thank you!

    Methods:

    UPDATED NEWS:

    Check out the new "Google Search" option at the top of your CPF screen!!

    (Thank you Sasha!!)

    1. "Search" - function at the top of your screen. I'm not sure how many characters Sasha has our search pared down to - 3 characters typically take up too many resources for a search, so it may be 4 or higher?

    2. "Advanced Search" - function also appears when clicking on "Search". Many options presented.

    3. "Google Search" - "searchcriteria" site:candlepowerforums.com. (Replace "searchcriteria" with your own data and include: site:candlepowerforums.com

    4. "Google Search CPF link"- click on this link and bookmark page to be used again.

    5. "Ctrl F hot-key" - Many browsers allow the use of the "Ctrl F" hot-key to enter your search criteria for the page you're on.

    Example: Click on the CPF Archive at the bottom of your screen. Pick the Forum you wish to search. When the list of threads appears, use the "Ctrl F" hot-key combination on your keyboard and enter your search criteria. Various options are also present ("Find Next", "Find Previous" etc.)

    Note: When searching the archives you will need to click on each page and then click on "Find Next" over and over while wading through the info...then on to the next page of that thread. Be patient there's a lot of pages in some of those archived Forums.

    6. "Place CPF search engine in Firefox searchbar" - Allows one to create and place their own custom search engine in the Firefox searchbar. Make sure you read and understand the "How do I remove" in case you decide you don't like it.

    Any others?
    Last edited by Sigman; 04-22-2007 at 05:31 PM.
    -"Must control self"-
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic* Haz's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    This sticky is a great idea I'm always searching for stuff on CPF.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* CroMAGnet's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    This sticky is a great idea.

    I have used all of those suggestions (and more) and have not had much luck searching the archives for desired threads.

    The other day I was searching for a thread I started a while back where I asked for info about what emergency generator to get for power outages in earthquake country.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* Lunal_Tic's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Thanks for the tips Sigman.

    It's a shame the archives are so hard to search. A lot of good stuff from back then.

    -LT
    lunal tic (n)
    a distinctive behavioral trait or quirk directly related to or caused by light [15th cent. Latin lunaris. Ultimately from an IE word meaning “light,”] and [Early 19th cent. Italian ticchio.] see also: moon quirk

  5. #5
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    the new 'google search' at the top of every page of CPF is awesome! thanks whoever did that.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* Lunal_Tic's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by ouchmyfinger
    the new 'google search' at the top of every page of CPF is awesome! thanks whoever did that.
    +1 on that.

    -LT
    lunal tic (n)
    a distinctive behavioral trait or quirk directly related to or caused by light [15th cent. Latin lunaris. Ultimately from an IE word meaning “light,”] and [Early 19th cent. Italian ticchio.] see also: moon quirk

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* blahblahblah's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    +2

  8. #8
    *Flashaholic* greenLED's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigman
    5. "Ctrl F hot-key" - Many browsers allow the use of the "Ctrl F" hot-key to enter your search criteria for the page you're on.
    ...
    Note: When searching the archives you will need to click on each page and then click on "Find Next" over and over while wading through the info...then on to the next page of that thread.
    I'm an avid searcher... if I could take the opportunity, once again, to ask people to write descriptive thread titles, that makes searching so much easier. Sometimes I've found good info under threads titled "please help" but unless I click on that thread link out of sheer boredome, that info will be lost for ever.

    Also be aware that things like Maglite are spelled in a gazillion different ways...

    I haven't tried that new search box, but if it's through Google, it should rock. A database without a search function is worthless - I'm glad that new feature was implemented ( Sasha or whoever did that!)


    Sigman, one more tip to add to your list: "Search for threads started by"... that'll even get threads started before the migration (which aren't properly indexed and normally unaccessible to the regular CPF search).

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* CroMAGnet's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by greenLED
    I'm an avid searcher... if I could take the opportunity, once again, to ask people to write descriptive thread titles, that makes searching so much easier. Sometimes I've found good info under threads titled "please help" but unless I click on that thread link out of sheer boredome, that info will be lost for ever.

    Also be aware that things like Maglite are spelled in a gazillion different ways...

    I haven't tried that new search box, but if it's through Google, it should rock. A database without a search function is worthless - I'm glad that new feature was implemented ( Sasha or whoever did that!)


    Sigman, one more tip to add to your list: "Search for threads started by"... that'll even get threads started before the migration (which aren't properly indexed and normally unaccessible to the regular CPF search).
    I'll second the request for specifics in titles.

    Sometimes I search the SELL section for a specific light and it would be a lot better if the titles didn't just say, "light for sale" or "All Sold" etc.

    Also, another question: Does the CPF search go through our siglines when determining the results? How about the Google search? I bet it does. (Not good because this brings up all my threads if I type in "McLuxx-III PD"

    I'm glad to see the CPF administration is addressing this issue. Search education and a bit of fine tuning might help with the bandwidth.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* Sub_Umbra's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    I love the Google CPF Search link. Thank you very much.

    I noticed that when I 'View Page Source' for any CPF thread the Subject of the thread is always inclosed by the HTML <TITLE></TITLE> tags for the page. The Google intitle: operator allows you to specifically search within the titles of web pages. That makes it a Subject Search for CPF threads. If you can remember a phrase from the Subject of the thread you're looking for you may use the new Google CPF Search link to get results with just that subject:

    intitle:"CPF specials"

    will return hits from greenLED's CPF Special page. If you can only remember a few individual words from the Subject you're looking for you can still use multiple instances of the intitle: operator in one query:

    intitle:CPF intitle:specials

    seems to find the same thread as the above phrase search.

    Google's inurl: operator may be helpful if you want to specifically include or exclude the CPF Archives from your search. By adding

    -inurl:ubbthreads

    to your query your Results page will only contain hits from the Archive.

    By adding

    inurl:ubbthreads

    all of your Results should be from post CPF software upgrade threads.

    If you leave out the inurl: operator you will automatically search both current threads and Archives.

    You can also use any number of Google's different operators in the same query -- although sometimes Google thinks I'm a virus and says so. :/

    I've been using these operators when searching CPF for a while but there certainly may be quirks involved in their use that I haven't found yet. If anyone finds anything really weird, let me know and I'll edit this post.
    Last edited by Sub_Umbra; 08-02-2006 at 02:32 PM.

  11. #11
    *Flashaholic* greenLED's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Sigman (and you FireFox users), another option:

    Mozilla Firefox Custom Search Engines

    I have one in my searchbar for CPF now. Haven't played much with it yet - we'll see how it works. I already have the Google search plug in, but I'm too lazy to type site:candle....

    Last edited by greenLED; 08-03-2006 at 09:30 PM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Are there any guidelines for how to use the vb search function? When I type a simple query like 'luxeon rebel' I get a blank screen. If I'm in the LED forum and I perform the same query using Search this Forum, it works sometimes, but not reliably. I find that the Google search tool is inadequate - the most relevant results are buried deep in the search results, and they're out of date. Of course I can use my browser's search tool to search a page of forum thread titles, but that's tedious since you can only search a page's worth of threads at a time.

  13. #13

    Default Searching the CPF Board!?

    Since I've been on CPF many persons have mentioned how difficult searching for information can be. So, I though a thread on this might be useful. It would be a good idea for the mods to post a sticky at the top or some easily accessible instructions for effective searching, especially since there are several ways to search. Maybe there is a place, but you have to search to find it if so. I did a search on thread titles for "searching" and found only a couple of relevant threads. One was back in 8/06 and was pretty specific and had zero replies. The other was still a bit esoteric and was back on 2/06, so I thought the time seemed right for a thread on searching.

    For searching the CPF board, you don't want the Google search, which is the one most prominently listed above. I think most people would want the advanced search which is accessed under "search" above. Then you can search under a user name or a series of words. You can access threads or posts--actually in two places. If you put in too many words the search seems to exceed some sort of quota. In fact, I've found that frequently an error message is given when there doesn't appear to be a reason. I'd like to know why and when that is likely to happen. Maybe someone can help on this?

    If you search on posts, it will list individual posts, but you can search on thread titles only, which narrows down the search list and makes an error less likely. You can also search only recent postings, making the search much more efficient. If anyone has other information about effective search techniques, I'd love to hear about it.

  14. #14
    Flashaholic* Sub_Umbra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Searching the CPF Board!?

    Quote Originally Posted by HarveyRich
    ...If you put in too many words the search seems to exceed some sort of quota. In fact, I've found that frequently an error message is given when there doesn't appear to be a reason. I'd like to know why and when that is likely to happen. Maybe someone can help on this?
    Google has gone from a ten word query limit to a thirty-six word limit. There are a number of reasons why people DO use Google for certain types of CPF searches. I think you've found another. Using the Google search box also takes some of the load off the CPF server as Google is doing the heavy lifting for CPF by using their server time for those searches.
    Quote Originally Posted by HarveyRich
    ...If you search on posts, it will list individual posts, but you can search on thread titles only, which narrows down the search list and makes an error less likely. You can also search only recent postings, making the search much more efficient. If anyone has other information about effective search techniques, I'd love to hear about it.
    Searching by CPF Subjects is very straightforward with Google and instructions are given about three posts above yours, here.
    Last edited by Sub_Umbra; 04-22-2007 at 03:09 PM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Okay, so this isn't a new issue. Glad this issue is a sticky. It took me a while to find it's location under the "Administrative" area under "Questions/Problems/Suggestions" and I appreciate that it is here and easily accessible. It might be useful to let new users (or others) know via an icon somewhere on the main board area that this section exists. I know--it's my fault for not finding it sooner, but just a thought, especially since the search issue seems to come up online with frequency.

  16. #16

  17. #17
    *Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    many thanks for a much needed topic!

    I do wonder about how much extra resources searches places on cpf servers. especially high load intensive searches like requests for all threads started by and/or all posts.

    IMHO all searches should done on google search engine before trying cpf's search. this would off load a major load off of cpf's servers.

  18. #18

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    IIRC, the semi-recent solution for the constant "server busy" messages was to stop search bots from crawling. Can Google still crawl CPF, or is the Google search limited to pre-fix threads?

  19. #19
    Flashaholic* Sub_Umbra's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Yes, I think Google is still crawling. Google just found CY's 04-23-2007 post to this thread. Google now has at least two crawler strategies: one for sites with little changing content that only get crawled every 5-8 weeks and one for rapidly changing sites like CPF that probably get crawled for new content every few days.

    I don't know how often CPF is actually indexed by Google but it seems to generally be pretty up to date.

    EDIT: I just went to Google and ran phrase searches from one post after another, going back one day older with each search. The latest post Google found was five days old. Not bad.
    Last edited by Sub_Umbra; 05-17-2007 at 01:10 PM.

  20. #20
    Administrator Greta's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    I banned all bots a few days ago when everything went fubar...

  21. #21

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    I am using Firefox and notice Search This Thread, Search This Forum and Thread Tools dropdowns don't work. Did I miss an announcement?

    Edit: Saw another thread. Didn't really help but we can move this discussion there.
    Peace!
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  22. #22

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by sygyzy View Post
    I am using Firefox and notice Search This Thread, Search This Forum and Thread Tools dropdowns don't work. Did I miss an announcement?

    Edit: Saw another thread. Didn't really help but we can move this discussion there.
    Where's the other thread?? The google search sucks in many ways, and vBulletin would be so much better in many instances. Where's the thread with the info about the search going down...ironic enough, I can't find it with the google search....mostly because I can search by date.

  23. #23
    Flashaholic* Sub_Umbra's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by wintermute View Post
    Where's the other thread?? The google search sucks in many ways...
    Google isn't indexing CPF: EDIT: (At the time this posted) /EDIT

    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/robots.txt
    Last edited by Sub_Umbra; 06-26-2008 at 09:08 AM.

  24. #24
    *Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    sure hope google bot's are allowed to index cpf at a future date.

    here's a simple but effective method of using google to search cpf.

    let's say I'm looking for my old thread about Argo HP headlamp mod.
    use as search terms:

    1. concise item topic (ex. Argo HP)
    2. cy (cpf handle)

    insert into google box: argo hp cy

    http://www.google.com/search?q=argo+...owerforums.com

    BAM! google pulls up the old thread I'm looking for...

  25. #25
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Keep getting the following error whenever I try to search:


    Fatal error: Allowed memory size of 8388608 bytes exhausted (tried to allocate 35 bytes) in /var/www/vhosts/candlepowerforums.com/httpdocs/vb/search.php on line 1033

  26. #26

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?


  27. #27
    Flashaholic Kelvino's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Empath View Post
    Unfortunately your link isn't working. Could you please post again?
    Kelvin

  28. #28
    Enlightened TorchEnvy's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Google search notwithstanding, I wish the vBulletin search would accept two-character search arguments. One cannot use it to search for A2, 6P, etc. because it considers those "words" too short. With vBulletin, one can limit the scope of the search to one or more target areas within the CPF topics structure, unlike the Google CPF search.
    Inova X1 - Arc AAA-P - Fenix L1T - Surefire L2 - Fenix L2T - Fenix P1 - Peak LED Caribbean - Mini Maglite 2AA (TLE-5 LED) - Surefire 9P (P90, P91) - MagLite 4D (TLE-6N) - Inova T3 - Surefire 6P (P60, P61) - Streamlight ProPolymer 4AA Luxeon - HDS EDC U60GT - Fenix P2D - Fenix P3D - Fenix L2D

  29. #29

    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by RiZA View Post
    Unfortunately your link isn't working. Could you please post again?
    The link is just a search for the term "8388608". A list of something like 161 hits result, listing posts making the same comment or asking the same question.

  30. #30
    Flashaholic Kelvino's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to SEARCH CPF?

    Quote Originally Posted by Empath View Post
    The link is just a search for the term "8388608". A list of something like 161 hits result, listing posts making the same comment or asking the same question.
    Ohh, I see, thanks.
    Kelvin

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