Configuring Search for a Site

If you wish to have an alternate search to the University-wide Google service, you do have some options. This case study covers three. Each service provides quite good quality results.

Note that for each of these search services, it only indexes pages which are reachable via links (or are entry pages for Atomz or Master.com.) Any pages which have any access restrictions can not be indexed by any of these services.

Service/Example Features
Google Pros
No limits of number of pages or results bandwidth.
Simple to configure.
Indexing already being done.

Cons
Can't change results page (will always say "Search the UW")
Can't change indexing schedule (every 30 days.)
All pages must live under one directory.
Can't filter out files to index.
No search reports.

Atomz

Terms and Conditions

License Agreement

Comparison of Atomz products

Pros
Very customizable results page.
Can manually index at any time.
Can select weekly indexing, and day/time of indexing.
Can schedule what day of the week and time to index.
Ability to specify multiple URL entry points.
Can filter which files to index.
Good reports emailed to you.

Cons
Limited to 750 pages indexed.
Configuring custom results page rather complicated.
Requires contextual ads to be shown on search result pages.

Master.com

Terms and Conditions

Pros
Simple configuration of custom results page.
Can manually index at any time.
Automatic weekly indexing.
Ability to specify multiple URL entry points.
Can filter which files to index.
Generous limit of 5000 files.
Reports available (web only).
No limit on number of searches, as long as not "disproportionately large".

Cons
Index automatically done weekly, but can't set date/time.
Limited to 30 million bytes of content indexed.