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How to have Win 7 search Zip files for filenames

Last response: in Windows 7
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November 25, 2009 4:58:24 PM

In WinXP, using the standard Windows search, I could search for a filename, and if it was found in a Zip file, that would be shown in the search results. In Win 7 (even after changing search options to search ZIP files) it usually does not find the filename in a Zip file. Occasionally it finds it in one Zip file, but I know it is in several and need to see all of them to find the one I want. I have indexed the drive being searched.

I feel like I am missing something in the search settings.

Any thoughts? Thanks.
November 25, 2009 5:13:10 PM

At my place of work, we found a very serious limitation in the Windows search functionality in Windows XP. Although it's not exactly what you're describing this may be the answer for your problem...

http://www.easexp.com/xsearch/

Hey, it's free... couldn't hurt to see if it worked.

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November 25, 2009 5:33:25 PM

I tried that, and it looked promising, but it seems that it doesn't search Zip files. I need to find certain filenames that may be in any Zip file in a specified location (don't need to search for text within them, just the filename). It never gives any results when searching the locations that have only Zip files (and which I know contain what I'm looking for).
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November 25, 2009 6:57:59 PM

That was the feature I wasn't sure about. We had a problem where the Windows Search tool BY DESIGN did not look within certain types of files... we were just wanting it to search through text files (I honestly forget what the extension was, but it was a standard text file extension) and the search tool just skipped right over them.

Sorry that wasn't the right answer for you. I don't have Win 7 at work so I can't really say much else.
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December 1, 2009 12:44:36 AM

DL winrar and look at them individually. It will be quicker than extracting all em.
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December 1, 2009 1:35:05 AM

Not practical to look at them individually. I need to look for a certain file that could be in any of hundreds of zip files on one drive. I have download Total Commander and that basically works, but I'd rather not pay for something that should work natively in Windows 7 (as it did in previous versions).
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December 1, 2009 1:47:04 AM

Thats why god made cracks
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December 1, 2009 10:37:14 AM

I won't use a crack for a shareware or commercial program. If you have a crack though to make Win 7 work right, I'd be interested.
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December 1, 2009 11:21:13 AM

Is this the 7 fix you were after?

It appears the setting is in folder options to search within compressed / archived files.

I'm not sure whether it's for searching the contents within a .zip or just the .zip themselves.

But hey, it's worth a crack:

http://mintywhite.com/windows-7/7maintenance/windows-se...
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December 1, 2009 11:47:01 AM

I had already found those settings and had set it that way, but it still doesn't find files within zips, only the zip files themselves.
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December 1, 2009 12:44:26 PM

I just had a quick look at my system and found another option.

If you click on the start orb and type "Indexing options" into the search box. Click on "Indexing options" when it shows.

Click on the "Advanced" button.

Click on the "File types" tab.

Everything should be checked, and .zip should be in the list (checked).

Click on the radio button which has "Index Properties and file contents" click "OK"

Does this include all the contents of the .zip file when you search now?

It will probably take a bit of time while it re-indexes the included settings though.
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December 1, 2009 12:57:38 PM

Tried that too already, still didn't find the Zip contents.
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December 1, 2009 1:00:57 PM

I'm at a loss.

You would think that the functionality that was with an earlier OS would carry over.

How are you searching the files? e.g are you using a wild card or just the file name?
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December 1, 2009 1:20:05 PM

I have tried both with part of the filename (worked in Win XP) and with wildcards -- no results.
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April 12, 2010 12:33:07 PM

Probably in the explorer the search option is now: "search only in indexed files for filenames"
->Try second option in "Tools > Folder Options - search"
"always search filenames and contents(might take several minutes)"

and yes it can take several minutes :( 
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April 12, 2010 12:43:37 PM

Tried that too -- it still doesn't find a file that is within a ZIP file.
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April 12, 2010 8:23:04 PM

Activating the 2 options worked for me, so the functionality is present in win7.
Were both options activated at the same time?

Can you look in the zip-files with win7, maybe there is some protection activated.
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Anonymous
a b $ Windows 7
July 25, 2010 1:58:42 AM

CMeys said:
Tried that too -- it still doesn't find a file that is within a ZIP file.


I had same issue and was looking here for a fix, I went on my own to the TOOLS / FOLDER OPTIONS / SEARCH tab, and set the "What to Search" to "Always search file names and contents" and now I can search for a single file in multiple zip files, takes a while to search, but this seems to work for what I needed.
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August 4, 2010 1:38:37 AM

I just went back to play with this some more, and finally hit on a winning combo:
TOOLS / FOLD OPTIONS / SEARCH

In "What to Search" to "In indexed locations, search file names and contents. In non-indexed locations, search file names only (the other choice worked but took forever).

In "How to search":
Check first, second and fourth options.

In "When searching non-indexed locations":
Uncheck "Included system directories"
Check "Include compressed files (ZIP, CAB...)

This works perfectly.

Only problem is that the preview pane doesn't work for some file times within an archive (works for them when not in an archive). I can live with that if necessary.
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August 22, 2011 5:56:00 PM

Thanks for the winning combo.

I use this feature to search for .bak files in zip files. When found, you can select and delete them and the Windows will delete them from the archive.

Very cool.
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a c 395 $ Windows 7
August 22, 2011 8:41:55 PM

This topic has been closed by Area51reopened
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