Copernic Desktop Search 1.5 Has Been Released

Copernic Desktop Search has had its version 1.5 released. I’ve had a look at it to see if maybe some of my suggestions from my article What I’d like to see in Copernic Desktop Search have made it into the final version. Unfortunately, there’s doesn’t seem to be any information on changes that have been made since the beta version, so it’s easy to miss something. Dear Copernic guys, maybe you could publish some more information on changes you make during development cycles?

Good news

CDS can now index offline mail and news folders for Thunderbird. Not so good news is, it’s incredibly slow… like one article a second, or even less than that (and these are newsgroup postings, very short in average and 99% without attachments). As the Index status window shows, the status jumps back to “email indexing complete” between every two articles, I guess that’s probably not correct anyway. I thought I was going to index some of my mail folders with this feature, but those are usually around 10000 messages each, so maybe that’ll have to wait for now. An issue I found is that for each of my IMAP accounts, two separate INBOX hierarchies are shown. Obviously there’s only one such hierarchy in reality, no idea where the other comes from. There doesn’t seem to be any difference in the folders underneath the two. Here’s what this looks like:

Bad news

A much worse problem is that the offline folder email indexing doesn’t seem to work at all. I tested this twice, once with an offline newsgroup folder, then with an offline IMAP folder. (BTW, if larger configuration changes are made, it’s always a good idea to restart CDS. More than once it happened to me that after I had removed a folder from the current email indexing configuration, CDS still continued indexing it, until I restarted it.) In both cases, CDS wasn’t able to show me the correct content of indexed entries! I just tried selecting individual entries in the “All Emails” view to see their content in the preview. This didn’t really work at all… I’m sounding cautious because the behaviour was so funny: CDS would always show me content of one email in the list, but it would show that same content regardless of my current selection. I didn’t even get the impression that this content really belonged to one of the emails I actually clicked on. Every once in a while, when I repeatedly changed selection, the content would change, too, only to stay the same again for the next 30 (or so) clicks.

More bad news

None of my other suggestions have been taken up be the developers. Not so nice… especially since I can’t imagine some of them to be that far out, or that difficult to implement, like the suggestion to enable indexing of browser-related information for more than one browser at the same time.

Even more bad news

As Marc Orchant and James Kendrick have been reporting in recent blog articles (this is Marc’s and this is James’s), there are serious issues running CDS on TabletPCs. I have one of those myself, so I’m really interested in this, and Copernic doesn’t seem to show any interest in solving these issues. Maybe it would be useful if more TabletPC users contacted Copernic and told them that this is important to us.

Conclusion

Well, I don’t like it too much. Copernic have managed to introduce a few serious bugs in CDS since the beta and they haven’t taken up much that was suggested at that time. My C# custom extractor for CDS still runs, but they haven’t done anything to extend the shortcomings of the extension API, for example with previewers or the ability to influence the scanning process itself. Obviously, CDS is free software, but it wouldn’t have to be if you ask me. Actually, I have three licensed programs by Copernic and none of them is being as actively developed as CDS is. Maybe Copernic would do good to listen to their users, to better coordinate their development and test cycles and for a product that may still be leading in a very competitive market… but they don’t have too much time to make the right decision here.

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