Powerful Alfresco search engine and searching Alfresco documents directly from your browser
The Search functionality is one of the important aspects when choosing an Open Source CMS, and as you may know, Alfresco uses the Apache Lucene search engine; a high-performance, full-featured text search engine. Along with the Lucene search engine, Alfresco's search capability is powered by Open Office, which is able to extract text from many file formats and make them available to the Lucene search engine. Let’s say a user has a PDF file, which contains a few text images, but he wants to store it as a text file in Alfresco repository, and of course the user wants to search the file by providing some keywords or meta-data. Searching files with meta-data may be relatively easy because most CMS supports custom meta-data. However, the problem is that the PDF file consists of images not text, which means without converting it to text there is no way to search the file with content.
As I mentioned in my previous blog ( http://www.appnovation.com/alfresco-transformation ), Alfresco supports various transformations and it can transform the PDF file to a text file by integrating OCR engine. By doing this, a user can find the file by providing various types of search such as wildcard, fuzzy, range, Boolean, and so on. For example, Alfresco search engine supports single and multiple character wildcard searches within single terms. To search for “text” or “test” you can use the search “te?t” or “te*t”. Another example of Alfresco search is Fussy Searches. The fussy searches are based on the Levenshtein Distance, or Edit Distance algorithm. To search for a tem similar in spelling to “roam” you can use “roam~”. This search will find terms like “foam” and “roams”. In addition, you can specify the similarity by providing a value between o and 1 such as “roam~0.7”. Finally, another good feature of Alfresco search is that it is possible to search the Alfresco repository directly from the browser. In order to add the Alfresco to Firefox or IE, to search alfresco repository directly from browser:
1. Open any browser and login Alfresco explorer client. Once logged in your browser, “Alfresco keyword search” should be displayed in your search engine dropdown box. (See the screenshot attached below.)
2. Now you can search the Alfresco repository directly from your browser.