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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

IBM Updates Free Enterprise Search Tool

IBM and Yahoo issued a new version of their free enterprise search
product on Tuesday, just weeks after rival Microsoft announced a
competing product. The latest release of IBM's OmniFind Yahoo Edition
contains a number of enhancements. Users can now generate up to five
separate indexes of documents, thereby enabling them to search from a
particular set instead of the entire repository. Other tweaks include
the ability to define additional custom search fields, according to
Aaron Brown, IBM's director of search and content discovery. IBM also
said the software is now easier to install as a Windows service.
OmniFind Yahoo Edition is based on the open source Lucene project. The
update includes the latest version of the Lucene core, according to
Brown: "It helps us close the loop with the community, because we've
contributed a lot of IBM code back into Lucene." However, the update
does not include any scalability improvements, and remains limited to
searching 500,000 documents per instance. Brown said the updates were
primarily guided by feedback from customers. The software has been
downloaded about 25,000 times, according to IBM. Yahoo and IBM released
the first version of the search engine about one year ago. From the
product description: "Open and extensible: (1) Built on Apache Lucene;
(2) Open URL-based APIs (REST); (3) Define, populate and search your
own custom fields; (4) Easily embeddable and customizable UI output
using XML/XSTL/HTML, HTML snippets." The Blog: "Also new in this
release is custom extensible metadata fields. This means you can define
your own fields in the index. Populate them via HTML meta tags,
extracted document meta-data, or directly through the push API, and
then search your custom fields. Not everyone needs this capability but
those that do need it need it badly and we've seen users jump through
incredible hoops to hack this capability into the fixed meta-data
search support we offered previously." More Information

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