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Easier Internet Explorer 7 Page Searches

Adding the Inline Search Plug-in to IE 7 gives the browser near Firefox-like search capabilities.

Chris: I use Firefox at home but IE at work because I have no other choice. When using IE, I really miss Firefox’s easier page search capabilities. Have you heard of any plans to add similar features to IE?
-- Jon

Jon, you are not alone with your IE wish list. I too had hoped that with IE 7, the Find feature would be improved to resemble the model used by the Firefox browser. For those of you who do not use Firefox, the difference with the Firexfox Find feature is that it immediately starts searching the page as you enter letters into the Find field at the bottom of the page. Also, when you start a page search using Firefox by pressing Ctrl+F on the keyboard or by clicking the Edit menu and selecting “Find in This Page,” the Firefox Find bar simply loads at the bottom of the Window. With IE, hitting Ctrl+F will open a Find popup dialog box, which most Firefox users do not feel is as elegant (me included).

There are several plug-ins that include improved page search features for the IE web browser. One popular plug-in with page search capabilities: the Google toolbar. The Google toolbar does much more than simple page searches, so it may be a bit overkill for your needs.

If you’re just looking for improved inline Web page search capabilities in IE 7, I suggest that you download the Inline Search IE 7 Plug-in. When the download completes, run the downloaded install.exe file to install it. Then, follow these steps to complete the installation:

  1. When the Inline Search Setup program starts, click Next.
  2. Enter the installation location, or accept the default location, and click Install.
  3. Close any open Internet Explorer windows and then click OK.
  4. When the installation completes, click Close.

Now you can open Internet Explorer and test the plug-in. After opening IE, hit Ctrl+F. You should see the Find field appear in the bottom portion of the window -- it'll look exactly like the Firefox Find feature. As you enter text to search a page, the plug-in will automatically begin to search the page.

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The Inline Search plug-in also has the same Find options as the Firefox browser. You’ll be able to search using the Find Next, Find Previous, Highlight All and Match Case features.

If the less-than-elegant default Find capabilities of IE 7 leave you suffering from Firefox withdrawals, adding the Inline Search plug-in may be just the remedy you need.

About the Author

Chris Wolf is a Microsoft MVP for Windows --Virtual Machine and is a MCSE, MCT, and CCNA. He's a Senior Analyst for Burton Group who specializes in the areas of virtualization solutions, high availability, storage and enterprise management. Chris is the author of Virtualization: From the Desktop to the Enterprise (Apress), Troubleshooting Microsoft Technologies (Addison Wesley), and a contributor to the Windows Server 2003 Deployment Kit (Microsoft Press).learningstore-20/">Troubleshooting Microsoft Technologies (Addison Wesley) and a contributor to the Windows Server 2003 Deployment Kit (Microsoft Press).

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