Search Tips   |   Advanced Search

Search Center

Use the Search Center to search and retrieve internal documents. Depending on what the administrator has set, we might also be able to search documents from intranet sources of the organization or from additional sources.

Search for content

To submit the search query, use the Search box available at the side of the portal theme bar.

Depending on the installation and its customization, search might be available by other than the default means.

  1. Click the arrow near Search text input field, and select a scope to search from the drop-down list of available scopes.

    The Search field displays the name of scope you picked. If we do not pick a scope, All Sources (the default) will be searched.

  2. To enter a search query, type the search string over the name of the selected scope in the entry field.

  3. Click the Search icon (magnifying glass) to launch the query.

    Search displays the items that match the search terms on the Search Center tab page. The information about the search results appears grouped by columns for relevance, title, owner, and date.

  4. Change or refine the search using one of the following methods:

    • Refine the search by typing additional words in the Search text entry field.

    • Launch a search to a different content location by selecting the search scope as required.

    • Optional: if the administrator has enabled search on metadata, we can narrow the search by specifying metadata of the searched documents.

      For example, we can search for documents by their title or description.

  5. Click Close Search to leave the search results.

Search by scopes

    Search scopes are used to group or limit searches to one or multiple content locations or document types or a combination of both. We can select scopes from the pull-down list next to the search text entry field.

The following search scopes are available by default:

Search collection Contents of Result List
All Sources Documents from Managed Web Content, from any indexed content that we have access to, and from any custom third-party links that have been configured by an administrator display in the same list. This does not pertain to external search services.
Managed Web Content Documents originating from the Managed Web Content source. This scope is available only if we have a Managed Web Content site.
Custom links Custom links are displayed in the pull-down selection list next to the search text entry field. They are typically third-party search facilities configured by the administrator

Search syntax

To improve the effectiveness of the search queries, follow these guidelines:

  • Use more than one word in the search queries.

    The search engine employs a free-text ranking mechanism to locate the best matches for your query. Documents containing more query terms and in close proximity to each other, will receive a higher score.

  • Use quotation marks (" ") to retrieve an exact match for your search string.

    When we use quotation marks, Search checks the position of words in the quoted phrase to make sure they are next to each other and in the order entered, for example:

    • Entering the phrase stock discount can be less precise since it will find results with the word stock or the word discount.

    • Entering the phrase "stock discount" returns results where this phrase appears exactly as we entered it.

    When using quotation marks, the following rules apply:

    • If we forget to use the closing quotation mark, Portal Search supplements the closing quotation mark and treats the search as a phrase search.

    • If we search for strings with special query characters, such as a blank or a colon ( : ), enclose the whole search string within the quotation marks.

    • Single quotation marks (') are not valid operators. Always use double quotation marks (").

  • Use the plus sign (+) or minus sign (-) symbolic operators to help narrow the search.

    A plus sign (+) in front of a term guarantees that every document contains that term. A minus sign (-) in front of a term ensures that every document returned excludes that term, for example:

      "status reports" -weekly +monthly

    The minus sign eliminates or rejects the weekly status reports from the returned result set while the plus sign narrows the search to monthly reports. Do not use the minus sign (-) symbolic operator with a one-word search query alone. The minus sign (-) works only in combination with other search terms. For example, the following queries return the same results:

    • -weekly +monthly
    • -weekly monthly
    • +monthly -weekly
    • monthly -weekly

  • Use an asterisk (*) as a trailing wildcard at the end of a search term, in the format wildcar*, but not *ildcard or wil*card.

  • The Did You Mean? feature is now included in WebSphere Portal v8.5 or later.

    If the search query has a typographical error, the Did You Mean? feature suggests different search results other than the search terms entered. The Did You Mean? feature works by recognizing and retrieving similar terms used in the indexed data. Since the Did You Mean? feature is based on indexed terms, the use of "AND" in the search query may return fewer suggested search results.

Search has the following limitations:

  • Search is not case-sensitive.

    For example, if you search for content about the country China, the result set might include other documents associated with china (of the pottery kind) unless you include or exclude certain words using symbolic operators.

      +china -pottery +asia

  • Search ignores punctuation, such as periods or commas, unless they are enclosed in a quoted phrase.

  • Search does not support the use of the logical operators AND, OR, and NOT.

  • The less than ( < ) and greater than ( > ) symbols are special HTML characters that Search cannot handle.

Search result list details

The following additional information about the search results is shown:

Data Description
Relevance A graphical representation indicates the relevance rank of each item returned in the result set.
Title This displays the item title. Results typically display the file type icon, or the source icon, if the result is not a file, with the returned result title as a link. Clicking the result title leaves Search and takes us to that search result.
Person This shows the name of the person most recently associated with the result, such as owner, contributor, sender, or directory listing.
Date This shows when an item was last updated.
Summary This shows a summary of a returned result item if one has been created by our owner of the returned item.

  • Suggested Links
    The Suggested Links portlet shows additional search results that are recommended for the search terms entered.

  • External Search Results
    The External Search Results portlet shows additional search results that an external search engine found for the search terms entered.

Parent User assistance for content authors