Finding Your Information

Finding Your Information

Being able to find information when you need it is as important as organizing information in the first place. As you assemble information in notebooks, you’ll use the search capabilities in OneNote to find and highlight the notes and other nuggets of information that you’ve compiled.

The search capabilities of OneNote rely on Windows Desktop Search (WDS). This search engine indexes the content of a OneNote notebook automatically in the background. OneNote searches not only the text notes you enter but the text in documents that you’ve inserted as printouts, text in graphics that you include on a page, and the text in pages from Web sites you send to OneNote.


If you don’t have Windows Desktop Search installed when you install OneNote, you’re prompted to download and install it. You can also install the search engine through the Options dialog box. On the Tools menu, click Options. In the Options dialog box, click Other, and then click Install Instant Search.

OneNote can also search the content of audio and video recordings, provided that you enable this option in the Options dialog box. (The option is on the Audio And Video page of the Options dialog box in the area labeled Audio Search.) OneNote 2007 uses speech-to-text tools and attempts to analyze audio and video files for recognizable content. For example, if you record a meeting at which you discuss next year’s major fundraising event, a search for references to the event would show a link to the audio file in which the event was discussed. If you click the link in the search results window, OneNote opens the page on which the audio file is located and begins playing the recording at the point at which the event began to be discussed. When you select the check box to turn on audio search, OneNote displays a dialog box that provides some information about what you can expect when recordings are included in the content that is searched. For example, the quality of a recording affects whether a search term is found, as do regional accents.

You can conduct a search over all open notebooks, or you can limit the scope of your search, as shown in the list that follows. Keep in mind that if you select a search scope (an item other than All Notebooks, which is the default), the scope you select is used for the next search you conduct (and those that follow that search as well). If you want to switch back to searching all notebooks, for example, you need to select this option the next time you search for information in OneNote.

You can choose one of the following options from the Search In list:

  • This Section

  • This Section Group

  • This Notebook

  • All Notebooks

To search in OneNote, type the term or phrase you’re searching for in the Search box, select the search scope that you want to use, and then click the Search button. OneNote displays its search results in an area on the right side of the window and highlights each instance of the term you’ve searched for on the pages where the term appears, as shown in Figure–23.

Image from book
Figure–23: Enter the term you want to search, and OneNote highlights instances of the term on notebook pages and lists the pages in a task pane.

Searching through OneNote notebooks helps you find information that might be far a field-for example, a note you remember entering several months ago but don’t remember exactly when or in what specific context. You can locate notes that you’ve taken more recently by sorting pages by date, for example, using a command on the View menu. When you choose this command, notebook pages are listed and grouped in the Page List task pane at the right of the OneNote window. The pages are organized under categories such as Today, Yesterday, Last Week, and even A Long Time Ago. You can then scroll through the list of pages in the task pane to locate a note or other information you’re looking for.

 Python   SQL   Java   php   Perl 
 game development   web development   internet   *nix   graphics   hardware 
 telecommunications   C++ 
 Flash   Active Directory   Windows