January 3, 2012

Federated Search Results in SharePoint

In this article, we are going to discuss about another interesting topic called Federated Search which came up with the MOSS (Microsoft Office SharePoint Server), when Microsoft updated the Infrastructure in SharePoint.

What is Federated Search?
Federate - Characterized by unity or being or joined into a single entity
Federation allows users to send the same query (search keyword) to multiple independent repositories, and display the results from each in its own region on a results page.

Advantages
1. It is helpful, when the search data is stored in the multiple repositories or to display results from various locations
2. We can bring the results from various social networking sites (Twitter, YouTube, Flickr etc.,) and search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.,) easily in our search results page
3. Displaying the results from various sites and search engines allows the user to view the results from different source in a single page
4. We can display different types of results like Sites, Images, Videos, etc., This allows the users to interact with the site more easily.

Disadvantages
1.If we are using this federated search results in a corporate intranet, then there will be security issue. This is because, all the search queries/keyword (which may be confidential to a company) will be sent to the search engines. This search engines will store the data for some time, even after querying the results.
2. We cannot crawl the results from the other sources (Search Servers) and store the index
Hope this helps you!


Also, read about Configuring a Federated Results for Twitter in SharePoint 2010 and using it in this article.

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