Advanced Search | Help
Getting Started with Search | Expanding Your Search | Refining Your Search | Advanced Search |
To search for a document, type a few descriptive words in the search box, and press the Enter key or click the search button. A results page appears with a list of documents and web pages that are related to your search terms, with the most relevant search results appearing at the top of the page. By default, only pages that include all of your search terms are returned. So to broaden or restrict the search, include fewer or more terms. You do not need to include "and" between the terms. For example, to search for afforestation grant scheme documents, type the following:
Note: Encrypted, viewable PDF documents are converted to HTML for indexing, but the HTML is not displayed.
For U.S. English searches, a single spelling suggestion is returned with the results for queries where the spell checker has detected a possible spelling mistake. The spell checker feature is context sensitive.
The searches are not case sensitive. All letters, regardless of how you enter them, are handled as lower case. For example, searches for "climate change," "Climate Change," and "Climate change" return the same results.
The search ignores common words and characters, such as "where" and "how," as well as certain single digits and single letters, because they tend to slow down your search without improving the results. The search indicates that a common word has been excluded by displaying details on the results page.
If a common word is essential to getting the results you want, you can include it by putting a plus ("+") sign in front of it. Include a space before the "+" sign, but not after it.
Alternatively, you can enclose a series of words with quotation marks and do a phrase search.
By default, search results are sorted by relevance, with the most relevant result appearing at the top of the page. If you want to sort the documents by date instead, click the Sort by Date link. The most recent document appears at the top of the page and the date of each file is returned in the results. Results that do not contain dates are displayed at the end and are sorted by relevance.
When you search for numbers, do not use exponential numbers, such as "1e10," or negative integers, such as "-12."
Numbers that are separated by commas are treated as separate figures, not fractional numbers; that is, the comma is treated as a term separator, not a decimal separator. For example, if you type "3,75", the search query is treated as a search for two separate terms, "3" and "75", not the decimal fraction, "three and three quarters." Commas that separate every three digits are ignored and are not necessary. For example, both "10,000" and "10000" are treated alike.
You can expand your search by using the OR operator. To retrieve pages that include either word A or word B, use an uppercase OR between terms. For example, to search for a document relates to Farming or Forestry, type the following:
Since the search returns only web pages that contain all of the words in your query, refining or narrowing your search is as simple as adding more words to the search terms you have already entered. The refined query returns a subset of the pages that were returned by your original broad query. If that does not get the results that you want, you can try to exclude words, search for exact phrases, or restrict the search to a range of numbers. These techniques are described in the following subsections.
If your search term has more than one meaning, you can focus your search by adding a minus sign ("-") in front of words related to the meaning you want to avoid. Make sure you include a space before the minus sign. You can daisy chain a list of words you want to exclude.
For example, to search for forestry and exclude search results about emissions, type the following query:
The search returns pages about forestry that do not contain the word "emission"
Phrase searches are useful when you are searching for famous sayings or specific names. You can search for an exact phrase or name in the following ways:
Phrase connectors and quotation marks join your search words as a single unit. For example, if you type the following query, the search treats it as a phrase search even though the search words are not enclosed in quotation marks.
You can confine your search query within a certain range. You can set ranges for dates, weights, prices, meta tags, and so on. The following subsections describe ways you can refine your searches with ranges.
To search for documents or items that contain numbers within a range, type your search term and the range of numbers separated by two periods (".."). You can set ranges for weights ("250..500 g carbon fork"), dimensions ("90..100 mm stem"), years ("tour de france 2000..2006"), prices in dollar currencies only ("bike lights $10..$30"), and so on. Be sure to specify a unit of measurement or some other indicator of what the number range represents.
For example, to search for publications that was published after 2007, type the following:
Each number in the range should not include more than six significant digits. For example, if you were to type the search query, "1..1234567 ton truck," only the first six significant digits in the "1234567" would be included in the range search; that is, it is as though you have just typed, "1..1234560 ton truck."
You can search for documents that contain dates that fall within a time frame. To use date range search, type all of the following:
Do not add a space between the search operator and the date range. The dates could be in either of the following formats:
For example, to search for a document about sustainable farming that was modified within a specific two-year period, type the following:
The earliest date that you can use in your date range search is January 1, 1990; and the latest date, November 9, 2034.
You can search only for documents that include metadata or meta tags that contain numbers within the range you specified. To use metadata range search, type all of the following:
For accurate date range searches with inmeta, the meta tag content must contain only the date and no other data. Suppose your documents have metadata called "modified" that contains the last modified dates of the documents. To search for a document about risks that was created sometime in 2006, you could type the following:
You can use the inmeta operator beyond just searching for documents with metatdata that includes a range of dates or numbers. To learn more about inmeta, see the Search Protocol Reference.
The search supports several advanced operators, which are query words that restricts your search to a smaller set of documents. When you enter your search query, do not add a space between the search operator and the search terms.
Also see the intext: search operator.
Also see the intitle: search operator.
The search operator works on words in the URL, not URL components such as punctuation. Slashes ("/"), for example, are ignored.
Also see the inurl: search operator.
Typing allinurl:sustainable/farming in the search box returns the same documents as the previous example. The slash in the search term is altogether ignored.
If you include search words in addition to the web address in your query, those search words will be highlighted within the cached document.
Typing cache:www.maf.govt.nz press releases in the search box returns the cached content with the words "press" and "releases" highlighted.
Putting intext: in front of every word in your query is equivalent to putting allintext: at the front of your query.
Typing intext:forestry search returns documents that mention the word "forestry" in the body text and mention the word "search" in the body text, the title, the anchor, or anywhere else in the document.
Typing intext:forestry intext:search in the search box is the same as typing allintext: forestry search.
Putting intitle: in front of every word in your query is equivalent to putting allintitle: at the front of your query.
Typing intitle:forestry intitle:search in the search box is the same as typing allintitle:forestry search.
Putting the inurl: operator in front of every word in your query is equivalent to putting allinurl: at the front of your query.
Typing inurl:forestry/search in the search box returns the same documents as the previous example. The slash in the search term is altogether ignored.
Typing forestry inurl:forestry inurl:search in the search box returns documents that contain both "forestry" and "search" in the URL. It returns the same documents as the search query allinurl:forestry search.
No other search term can be appended to this search operator and the specified web site.