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I want my coworkers to be able to type a search into a single box and have it return information from all those sources.

  1. Network File Share
  2. Internal Wiki (based on MediaWiki)
  3. Google Docs (we use google apps for your domain)
  4. Emails sent to a particular email address (reference@mydomain.com)

Search results would be text, images, and also to just find files buried in the network file share.

The best idea i've come up with so far is to install a Desktop Search tool on each computer which is capable of indexing network drives (so far the best one i've found is Copernic Desktop Search). Then, find a way to export the information (even if it's just the ascii text) from the other sources like the internal wiki, google docs, and email so information from these sources can be located as well.

The reason for this post is two fold:

  1. Am I reinventing the wheel? It seems like this should be a common thing by now.
  2. I could use suggestions for utilities to help me get 2-4 above into my file system.

Google Docs -> Files

I know syncplicity can do this which is overkill in some ways. Let me know if you have other suggestions.

Internal Wiki -> Files

I bet there are a lot of ways to do this. There are ways to spider sites and I bet there are ways to export using mediawiki plugins. I wish that someone would come out with a desktop search tool which could index websites as well. Any recommendations here?

Email to file

We need an easy way for people to be able to input information which is why I want to have an email address like reference@mydomain.com that people can CC on emails. I'd like to have some type of mail client periodically fetch emails from this address and then save the email to a PDF, DOC or txt file using the subject line as the filename. I did a quick google search and was suprised not to find this right away. It'd be nice if the application had additional support for like virus checking etc. But, I'm not too worried about this right now as we can setup certain controls like only allow people from inside our domain to send email to this address etc.

Desktop Search Tool

Copernic is the surprisingly the only desktop search tool which comes close to having the features I needed. Out of the box it has several features I haven't seen in it's alternatives like Google Desktop Search... mainly it can index network file shares, has good filtering options like searching for pictures by size, and you can specify date ranges. I doubt there is something better as I've searched the web many times but please let me know if you do know of something better.

Company background: We are a fairly small company (<10 employees). So, I'm not too concerned about the network file share indexing.

Edit 1: This project is still active. Any other suggestions besides the Google Search Appliance which is out of my companies price range.

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1 Answer 1

Have you looked at the Google Search Appliance or Google Mini?

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Not very closely. I'm guessing it's several thousand dollars which is out of our price range at the moment. Plus, unless the search features are drastically different from web search... it's not as appropriate. I'd like to filter by date modified, file extention, image size, etc. –  blak3r Nov 12 '09 at 1:45

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