How to search content on a file server using SharePoint 2010 search

Written By: Rob Fisch -- 3/8/2011 -- join -- contribute -- (2859) comments -- printer friendly version

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Categories: Document Management, Integration with other products , SharePoint 2010, SharePoint Foundation 2010

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Normally, the SharePoint 2010 Search service is configured to index content in your SharePoint Site Collection(s). But what if you want to index files on the file server and let users search from one centralized location? This can be solved by creating a "New Content Source".


Open SharePoint Central Administration and select "Manage service applications" under "Application Management.


Find and select the "Search Service Application". 


Click "Content Sources". 


Select "New Content Source". 


Give the new content source name. Then select the "File Shares" radio button. In the "Start Address", enter the UNC path to the share (or subfolder within a share) that you want to index. Normally you would allow crawling of subfolders, but if you want finer control of what gets indexed, you can specify individual folder names using the "Only crawl the folder of each start address" option."


Now it's time to configure a crawl schedule, but before setting those, check the "Start full crawl of this content source checkbox". (You can check the box after configuring the schedules, but I won't be showing the screenshot again.) 


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