By Robbie Lee | January 16, 2015
A common complaint about wikis is the difficulty in finding relevant content. Often, you can attribute this issue to excessive amounts of duplicated, inaccurate, empty, poorly-constructed or poorly-written content.
To create and maintain Confluence as a reliable source of information, you need knowledgable people to periodically review and update your site. If your company lacks these resources, each user must learn how to find accurate and relevant information. One catch though, how do you find that same information repeatedly and quickly? Check out the Mark Content for Later tab for ideas.
A simple search is text-only, no special characters or prefixes. Within the search box, type any word or phrase, and Confluence returns results that contain content matches for one or more of the words.
Advanced SearchLike most, the search engine behind Confluence accepts advanced query syntax for:
- Boolean expressions
- exact phrases
An added bonus is the ability to search against fields in the database. You can search for:
- types of content
- page titles
- space keys
Examples of Advanced Queries
Here are a few examples of advanced search queries.
|Boolean and Exact Phrase|
|Boolean and Label|
|Exact Phrase and Label|
|Wildcard, Exclusion, Grouping and Boolean|
Once you enter text in the Confluence search box, you have two avenues for viewing results: quick navigation and standard (full). As you populate results, pay attention to the icon in front of each item. These icons inform you of content type.
|Content Type||Icon||Quick Navigation||Standard (Full)|
Do search results include the content within attachments?
Yes, Confluence indexes and searches content in the following attachments:
- Adobe PDF
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Microsoft Word
New and Updated Content
The Confluence indexer runs every minute. Therefore, you may need to wait before seeing new or updated content in search results.
The quick navigation aid appears as a dropdown list below the search box. These results may include pages, spaces, administrative options, user profiles and other items. As you enter text in the search box, the results update to show possible matches.
Confluence matches your query against page titles. Therefore, you will not see results when your query matches content within pages.
A standard (or full) search involves matching your query with content in spaces, user profiles, attachments and space descriptions. You initiate this type of search by hitting the Enter key or clicking the magnifying glass at the bottom of the quick navigation results. Results appear on a separate page.
Once you view the results of a standard (full) search, you can filter your results by:
- last modified date
- content type
If locating good content is a challenge, you have a few options for re-discovering it easily.
You can mark any page you have permission to view as a favorite. You can also access your list of favorites. One down side to this list is the inability to categorize it. As you add items, you may begin to lose track of the most important pages. With this issue in mind, try to minimize the number of pages you mark as a favorite.
List of Links by Category
Another option for tracking pages is a categorized list of links on your personal space. This list requires upkeep but grants you the ability of customization.
If your company allows you to add page labels, take advantage of this time-saving option. Each time you find a page of interest, add a label that is specific to you or your job. Later on, search for those pages using the advanced
labelText: syntax. Here are some label examples.