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Article ID: 941946 - Last Review: June 10, 2011 - Revision: 1.4

Support for Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) ends on July 12, 2011. To continue receiving security updates for Windows, make sure you're running Windows Vista with Service Pack 2 (SP2). For more information, refer to this Microsoft web page: Support is ending for some versions of Windows (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/help/end-support-windows-xp-sp2-windows-vista-without-service-packs) .

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INTRODUCTION

Microsoft has released an update to Windows Vista that includes the following changes:
  • Adds changes to desktop search
  • Enables third-party search applications to integrate into Windows
This update contains a new protocol for calling the default desktop search application.

This article describes the updates to the platform and the user interface that are included in Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1).

MORE INFORMATION

Important The information in this article applies only to installations of Windows Vista SP1 or upgrades to Windows Vista SP1.

Platform update

The search protocol is intended to be the protocol for calling the default desktop search application. The default application can be Windows Search Explorer or another third-party application.

For more information about the search protocol and the search protocol syntax, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7345683 (http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7345683)
If you develop an application that is meant to use or meant to build upon a specific desktop search application, you should not depend only on the search protocol. Because many applications may own the search protocol, you cannot guarantee that the targeted desktop search application owns the search protocol at any time. Instead, use a private search protocol that is defined by the targeted desktop search application. Similarly, desktop search applications that are intended to be a platform for third-party applications should support both the search protocol and a proprietary search protocol.

Note The search protocol does not replace the proprietary "search-ms" protocol. Applications can still use the "search-ms" protocol to start Window Search Explorer or to silently query the Windows Search indexer.

The default desktop search application for the search protocol is controlled from Control Panel. Use one of the following methods to view or change the default program for the search protocol.

Associate the search protocol with a program:
  1. Click Start, and then click Default Programs.
  2. Click Associate a file type or protocol with a program.
  3. Select the search protocol, and then click Change program.
  4. Select the program that you want as the default program for handling the search protocol, and then click OK.
Set the default program for the search protocol
  1. Click Start, and then click Default Programs.
  2. Click Set your default programs.
  3. Select the applications that you want to use as the default program, and then click Choose defaults for this program.
  4. Select the search protocol, and then click Save.

User interface updates

Microsoft has updated the user interface elements that are listed in the following table.
Collapse this tableExpand this table
User interface elementUpdate
Control PanelThe Associate a file type or protocol with a program dialog box lists the search protocol under Protocols.
Control PanelThe Set your default programs dialog box lists Windows Search Explorer as a selectable program.
Control PanelThe Indexing Options dialog box includes a Pause button. When you click the Pause button, the Windows Search Indexer stops indexing new content for 15 minutes.
Start menuThe Search option on the right side of the Start menu is removed.
Start menuThe See All Results option is changed to the Search Everywhere option.
Start menuThe Search Everywhere option passes the search arguments that are typed in the text box to the default search application by using the search protocol syntax. For more information about the search protocol syntax, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7345683 (http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7345683)

Entry points for the search protocol

This update also sets many of the general search entry points in Windows Vista to use the new search protocol. The new search protocol calls the default desktop search application. These search entry points include the following:
  • When you press the Windows logo key+F, the default application for the search protocol starts.
  • When you click Start and then press F3, Windows Explorer opens the default application for the search protocol.
  • When you press CTRL+F in Windows Explorer, the default application for the search protocol starts.
  • In Windows Explorer, the Search Everywhere option appears on the toolbar as soon as a search starts. When you click this option, the default application for the search protocol starts.
  • You can no longer right-click the Search option on all containers.

APPLIES TO
  • Windows Vista Service Pack 1
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