Windows Desktop Search Enterprise Avilable

The new Windows Desktop Search (WDS) Enterprise version is now freely available for download from Microsoft.

Unlike the unmanaged consumer WDS version, the enterprise version is designed to work with automated deployment tools such as Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS), Active Directory (AD), or Group Policy, or via any third-party deployment product. That means it supports a wide range of configuration options, allowing administrators to specify which features are available, which document types can be searched, and so on.

The product has several new capabilities as well. The Outlook toolbar is better integrated into the Outlook client, providing search results directly in the application--not in a separate window as with the consumer version. The scope of user searches is now configurable by administrators, letting you not only specify one or more custom intranet search strings but also a name of the WDS deskbar that identifies that location. For example, in the consumer version, the deskbar lets you search locally or on the Web; with the enterprise version, users will see a third choice--named as you see fit instead of a generic label such as "intranet" or "local network." Finally, because WDS is easily extensible via a simple API documented on the Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN), corporations can easily add search support for custom document types that they use inhouse. And a wide range of free and low-cost add-ons for WDS is already available on

MSN Search Toolbar for enterprise is available too.

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