Howto enable Windows Search Service in Windows Server 2008

I found that the Windows Search Service in Windows Server 2008 is a bit hard to discover. The Windows Search Service is actually burried as a Role Service under the File Services Role.

 These are the steps to add and enable the Windows Search Service in Windows Server 2008:

1) Start Server Manager

2) Click on Roles in the left navigation pane

3) Select Add Role in the Roles Summary pane to the right

4) Select the File Services role and click Next

5) Select the Windows Search role service

Finish the wizard and now you should have the Windows Search service up and running.

Comments (18)

  1. Since I do all of my development work using virtual machines, I have been very interested in the new

  2. Since I do all of my development work using virtual machines, I have been very interested in the new…

  3. Following on my previous posting about setting up Win2k8 on my laptop, I realised that I cannot do Instant

  4. Office Team says:

    awesome, was looking to turn this on, didn’t think to goto file services.  thanks!

  5. Raphael says:

    Very helpful as it's really hard to find it.

  6. Catherine Shao says:

    great, very helpful!

    I already have File Services role, so I just added the role service.

  7. Eric Schrader says:

    If the File Services role is already installed, go to Roles in the Server Manager, and under Roles go to FIle Services. Click on Add Role Services and select Windows Search Service and click next, select drives to index.Takes a few miinutes to install.

  8. Techie Smurf says:

    Thank you for posting this – saved a lot of time!

  9. Thank you.. the same applicable for Window 2012 as well…

  10. Thank you. It's very helpful.

  11. tjcooper says:

    Carefull!!! Indexing a large number of files can create a large .edb file. Pay attention to the size of this file or it will consume disk space. If you VM is think provisioned, it will expand until it hits the hard cap.

  12. Luc van Vugt says:

    Indeed helpful, not in the least through Eric Schrader's addition. Thanx.

  13. Ivan Vujica says:

    Thanks for the info. Saved me much time seaching for it.

    I wouldnt have thought to install it as a role.


  14. Eric Wallace says:

    I was looking all over in there. Thank you!

  15. Bradj56 says:

    Server 2008 r2


    Service Manager, Roles, Add Roles, Server Roles, File Services,

     Role Services, Windows Search Service, next, next, Install

    Control Panel, All Control Panel Items, Indexing Options, Advanced, File Types,

     Check/Add your file types and select Index Properties and File Contents

       (Note: it doesn't matter if the folder is actualy indexed or not)

    File manager, Organize, Folder and search options, Search,

     Always search file names and contents

     Find partial matches (Note: still needs start of word)

       Ex: to find BindForm, bInDfO works, indForm fails

  16. Muhammad Atif says:

    Many thanks for your post. I have the service installed, just added the role service.

  17. Pravin Bhosale says:

    Is it same for Win2012? If not, Any useful links to install the same on Windows Server 2012?

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