Searching for files or folders in Windows can be a bit tricky, if you are not aware of the location where the file or folder is stored. You can use the search box from Windows start menu and search for a file, folder, program etc, but there are some problems with the default Windows file search:
1. Windows search is always very generalized – either you get a lot of results or nothing at all. In some cases, it takes some time to hunt down the exact file which you are searching for.
2. Windows search is slow and if you have disabled indexing of files and folders, it’s even slower.
3. Windows search is of no use when you do not remember the name of the file in question.
Example: Let’s say you are searching for a picture you took during one of your vacation trips. The file name can be something like img00234.jpg and it’s impossible to remember the name after some time. When you try to search the image using the Windows search box, you feel helpless because you do not remember the file name.
Why you should Assign Tags to Files in Windows?
That’s when you need the concept of “Tags”. Tags help you club similar things together and associate a familiar name with anything you want. Suppose you have the following four things kept at different places in your hard drive:
1. An image of Microsoft logo.
2. Microsoft office software setup file.
3. A PDF about Microsoft and Bill gates.
4. A text document containing a list of all employees who work at Microsoft.
Now, when you associate all of these items with the “microsoft” tag, they can be found quite easily. You may not remember the file name of the PDF or text document but you will surely remember that it’s about Microsoft. Hence you can easily find out that particular file using intelligent tagging built in Windows by default.
How to Assign Tags to Files in Windows
Before you can use the Tags for searching files quickly, let’s learn how you can tag files in Windows. Following are the steps involved:
1. Right click a file and open the properties window. Navigate to the “Details” tab as shown below:
2. You will see a “Tags” text box where you can enter one or more tags for that file. In addition to the tags, you can also add ratings, comments, subject and title to that file. However, these fields are not required for performing searches.
3. You do not have to memorize all the names of tags. When you want to assign a tag that is already created, Windows shows you tag suggestions as you type in the Tag text box.
It’s not possible to tag each and every file in your hard drive, however it’s recommended to tag the important ones so that they appear in the search results.
How to Search for the Tagged Files
Let’s assume you have tagged two files with the tag “baby” and you do not remember the file name or the location of any of these files. To search those files, just type the tag name in Windows search box and you will instantly see those files in the search result pane as shown below:
To open a file, all you have to do is click the link from the search result pane. Now isn’t that a cool and easy trick to search similar files in Windows whose file name you do not remember?
Do you use the Tagging feature in Windows search? Let us know your ideas and tips in the comments section.
Image credit: parisinita
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