The starting point for most searches of QED page titles, page contents, and media files is the search box in the left-hand side menu. This box contains two buttons and an Advanced search link, as explained below. The Advanced search page is the starting point for Google searches of the QED website.
For an overview of browsing techniques, see Help:Navigation.
The Go and Search Buttons
The Go button attempts to find a page with the specified title, whereas the Search button scans page titles and page contents for matching text. If the search button is labeled "Search folder", then the search is restricted to pages in the current folder.
For text searches using the Go or Search buttons:
- a trailing asterisk (*) can be used for wildcard searches, e.g. universal* matches universal, universality, etc
- one-letter words are not currently indexed on QED;
- the standard MySQL stopword list is in effect ;
- search is case-insensitive;
- a page only matches if it contains all the specified search words;
- to search for an exact phrase within the contents of pages, enclose the phrase in double quotation marks, e.g. "template variable".
- the wiki text, including HTML comments, is searched rather than the rendered text:
- thus search results for a word such as "Odiliënberg" will depend on whether the name was entered using the special character (ë) or "ë"; if the special character was used, searching for either Odilienberg or Odiliënberg would result in a match, but in the second case, both such searches would fail.
- to search for "Padé" entered as "Padé" you would search for "Pad eacute".
If you are logged in, you can modify various search parameters (including the default list of namespaces in which to search) by clicking on the preferences tab.
For comprehensive help about the Search facility, see MediaWiki Search Help, but note that on QED, there is no delay in updating the search index.
If you follow the Advanced search hyperlink, it takes you to the Advanced search page, which offers a variety of search possibilities, as detailed in the following subsections:
The Google logo acts as a button for performing a Google search of the publicly viewable pages on the entire website, as reflected in Google's cache. You can also simply use the Enter key while the cursor is still in the Google search text box.
Google searches have both advantages and disadvantages, including:
- The full power of Google query syntax may be used.
- Both QED pages and the text contents of uploaded files are searched.
- The generated text (e.g. Ä) is searched rather than the "raw" text (Ä).
- The Google cache will not reflect the most recent changes.
- The Google spider will only find publicly viewable pages and uploaded files that are linked to pages that it has found.
- Google currently will not index the content of pages, including Image: pages, that have suffixes such as .jpg
For details about formulating Google queries, see the Google Search Guide.
Prefix Searches of Page Titles
The Index page has a form for constructing a complete or filtered index based on page names.
To see a list of all articles in the main namespace, simply click on the Go button at the top of the page. The list can be filtered by specifying a prefix in the text box. Page titles in other namespaces can similarly be listed or filtered using the Namespace: pull-down menu.
The category-query form can be used to find items on the QED website based on how they have been classified. Such category-based searches view a category as containing all the items that have specifically been tagged as being in that category as well as items in any of its subcategories as defined recursively.
For help on constructing your own category queries, see Help:Category Queries.
Most of the text-based search techniques emphasize whole-word (or at least whole-stem) matches, but image and media file names can also be searched by substring. You can easily navigate to the form for file name substring searches by clicking on the Advanced search link in the search box on the left sidebar.
Searches based on recent changes
See Help:Recent changes for details.
Searching Geographic Maps
- Special:Imagelist — all file uploads
- Special:Newimages — gallery of new file uploads
- List Subpages — <ListSubPages> tag for listing the subpages of a top-level page
- Dynamic Page List — a simple query language for finding QED pages matching namespace/category criteria