Microsoft Releases A Ton of Popular Search Connectors

Search Connectors For Windows 7Yesterday Microsoft launched the Federated Search Connector Gallery and they started it out with a decent list of connectors.  Although Microsoft is targeting the enterprise with their Enterprise Search connectors, anyone with Windows 7 can use them to embed the search connectors into Windows Explorer for 1 stop searching!

What is a Search Connector?

We’ve talked about How To make your own search connector for home use before, but what about in a corporate environment?  Microsoft has this to say:

Federated Search Connectors allow a search solution based on any Microsoft Enterprise Search product (Microsoft Search Server 2010, Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010, Microsoft FAST Search for SharePoint 2010, Microsoft Search Server 2008, or Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007) to pass a query to a target system and accept and display results from that system. This connector returns results from Wikipedia. See the Federated Search Connector Gallery for other connectors and instructions for using connectors with specific Microsoft Enterprise Search products.

Microsoft Released the following search connectors on their public download site:

The download site doesn’t list any as compatible with Windows 7 or Vista, however the .OSDX version works just fine.

search connectors for windows 7

How To Install A Federated Search Connector In Windows 7

To install the search connector all you have to do is Download it and then open the .osdx file. A window should appear, Click Add and you are done!  Easy eh?

install federated search connector

All you have to do to use the search connector is open up Explorer and Click it under your favorites list.  Once you are on the connectors page your search box becomes the connector search tool.  In the example below I used the Wikipedia search connector to pull up web results from the website.

use a windows 7 federated search connector

Do any of you groovy readers use search connectors?  We’d love to hear your experience with them in the comments below!  If you have a groovy tip you want to share, drop us a note at!

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