Full-text Index Why bother?!  
Author Message
Tianya





PostPosted: Tue Sep 25 08:27:43 PDT 2007 Top

Exchange Servers Admin >> Full-text Index Why bother?!

Hi there everyone,

What is the point of the full-text index feature? I do not have it enabled
at any of my sites because I am concerned about the overhead. Yet my users
are able to search their mailboxes using either Outlook or OWA and they are
able to search on the body of the message as well as the subject, sender and
recipient information. What additional searching features can I expect my
users to have if I enable full-text indexing? Or will searches just go
faster?

I find the searches are reasonably fast even with large mailboxes. Do I
only need to enable full-text indexing if I am experiencing performance
issues when my users perform searches? It is rare that they do this anyway.

Thanks,

Ken.

Exchange Server42  
 
 
Bharat





PostPosted: Tue Sep 25 08:27:43 PDT 2007 Top

Exchange Servers Admin >> Full-text Index Why bother?! It's not rare - it's the nature of databases & search.

A simple analogy is that of a book - let's say as little as 200 pages.
You're trying to search "foo". Your search options:
- Scan each and every page of a book
- Go to the back of the book where you can find the index, go to the index
for letter F, look for foo. You get the page numbers on which it is
mentioned.

Yes, creating that index took some resources. If the book's content kept
changing or new content kept getting added, there will be a continuous
demand for resources by the indexing service. Nevertheless, searches will be
much faster.

If search performance without indexing doesn't bother your users much, you
can choose not to enable it.

--
Bharat Suneja
MVP - Exchange
www.zenprise.com
NEW blog location:
exchangepedia.com/blog
----------------------------------------------




> Hi there everyone,
>
> What is the point of the full-text index feature? I do not have it
> enabled at any of my sites because I am concerned about the overhead. Yet
> my users are able to search their mailboxes using either Outlook or OWA
> and they are able to search on the body of the message as well as the
> subject, sender and recipient information. What additional searching
> features can I expect my users to have if I enable full-text indexing? Or
> will searches just go faster?
>
> I find the searches are reasonably fast even with large mailboxes. Do I
> only need to enable full-text indexing if I am experiencing performance
> issues when my users perform searches? It is rare that they do this
> anyway.
>
> Thanks,
>
> Ken.


 
 
Mark





PostPosted: Tue Sep 25 08:32:50 PDT 2007 Top

Exchange Servers Admin >> Full-text Index Why bother?!


>Hi there everyone,
>
>What is the point of the full-text index feature? I do not have it enabled
>at any of my sites because I am concerned about the overhead. Yet my users
>are able to search their mailboxes using either Outlook or OWA and they are
>able to search on the body of the message as well as the subject, sender and
>recipient information. What additional searching features can I expect my
>users to have if I enable full-text indexing? Or will searches just go
>faster?
>
>I find the searches are reasonably fast even with large mailboxes. Do I
>only need to enable full-text indexing if I am experiencing performance
>issues when my users perform searches? It is rare that they do this anyway.
>
>Thanks,
>
>Ken.

If you're using Outlook 2003/2007 in cached mode you're going to make
little use of it. If you have a good powerful server and a user base
that doesn't do enormous searches then you might question the
usefulness.
If you've got quite a few users doing fairly regular searches then
there's an advantage to it because you're going to return search
results to the punters more efficiently. However, there is a downside.
You can schedule the indexing but that means you could be out of date
and searches will be incomplete for recent items.
You have to weigh that up with how many users do searches on stuff
that they can see in their inbox or something they files less than 24
hours ago and therefore probably don't need to be searched for because
the user knows where he just put it.

Lots of options there for you to consider.
 
 
DanH





PostPosted: Tue Sep 25 17:58:02 PDT 2007 Top

Exchange Servers Admin >> Full-text Index Why bother?! Hi Ken,

There are a number of benefits that full text indexing brings to the
table. The most notable ones are:

1) Faster searches. Depending on what is being searched, the difference can
be substantial.

2) Attachment searching. The full text index will search inside certain
attachment types. For example, if you are searching for "full text index"
and it is in an attached word doc., a search utilizing the FTI will find it,
while a traditional search would not.

3) Related word search. There's a "word stemmer" that determines related
words in your search. This can lead to a more complete result. For example,
if you searched for managed, the search would return manager and managing as
well.

There are a few other benefits as well. FTI is not for every environment,
and if search is providing the functionality you (and more importantly your
users) want, then it may not be for you. It can provide faster, and more
complete results, but does have some catches including added overhead, and
stale index results.

Hope this helped!

Dan Holton



> Hi there everyone,
>
> What is the point of the full-text index feature? I do not have it enabled
> at any of my sites because I am concerned about the overhead. Yet my users
> are able to search their mailboxes using either Outlook or OWA and they are
> able to search on the body of the message as well as the subject, sender and
> recipient information. What additional searching features can I expect my
> users to have if I enable full-text indexing? Or will searches just go
> faster?
>
> I find the searches are reasonably fast even with large mailboxes. Do I
> only need to enable full-text indexing if I am experiencing performance
> issues when my users perform searches? It is rare that they do this anyway.
>
> Thanks,
>
> Ken.
>
>