Tag Archives: FAST

Remove Stuck Item from FAST search

I manage a fast installation with a few million documents.

Something went wrong and FAST is returning results for files that no longer exist.

The “Normal” way to fix this is to do another crawl of the content source – In this case, it did not work.

The “best” way to fix this is to reset the index and re-crawl all the content.

Unfortunately, because of the size of our fast install, this is not practical – it takes over a week to index everything.

In other words, fixing this problem the “right” way will also bring down fast for at least a week for some content – not good.

On a support call with Microsoft – they told me of a quick way to remove individual results – it’s not quite as effective as a full index reset, but it has it’s place – for example – say that a confidential document got crawled, and the summary is showing up in search results. You’d want to get that out of the way right away – this approach can be good for that.

First download the free tool FS4SP Query Logger by Mikael Svenson – I found version 3 on codeplex with a quick internet search.
Run this on the fast server and click the start logging button, then go do your search using whatever search page is returning the bad results.
Once you see your search term show up on the upper left, look at the result XML and find the result.
you’ll want to grab the value of the “contentid” field – it will look something like this:


Be sure the Area of XML you are looking at matches the search result you are trying to eliminate!

now, also on the fast server, open a FAST powershell command.
enter the command:
DOCPUSH -c sp -U -d ssic://YourNumberHere

Just like that, your search result should stop appearing in search results.


As a side note, while we were looking at some things, we used a clever powershell command to search multiple directories for some text

 select-string  [0-9]*[0-9]index_dataurlmap_sorted.txt

Select-string is like Grep in Unix or Findstr in windows – it looks for strings.
what was neat here was the Regular expression for the path it limited the search to just a few key directories. – ie

A few quick commands to tell if FAST search is working

This post applies to users of Microsoft FAST search for SharePoint 2010.

Here are a few commands you can run on the FAST server to see if it’s healthy and also to get a feel if the back end is working in co-operation with the front end crawlers.

nctrl status will show if all the fast services are started and running.

indexerinfo status dumps some xml -the key piece here is the partitions – if you run indexerinfo status a few times, you should see some movement on these (percents will change)

Scope Sharepoint FAST search to a file share

Ok this took a bit of wrangling and some new understandings on my part to understand.

I was trying to index a file share of content, and create a FAST search page that would ONLY search that content. Since the FAST server had tons of other stuff on it, I needed to create a scope to narrow down the search. 

I used this powershell command to create the scope – this is key – you can’t do this from the sharepoint GUI (As of Sharepoint 2010 SP)

New-SPEnterpriseSearchQueryScope -SearchApplication “FAST Search Query SSA” -Name thisisthescopename -Description “A scope for a file share” -DisplayInAdminUI 1 -ExtendedSearchFilter “contentsource:nameofcontentsource”

Some explanation – the -SearchApplication is the name of our FAST query SSA – yours might be named differently

The -ExtendedSearchFilter nees some explanation,

First, the word contentsource needs to be in lower case – I had orignally tried it in mixed case (ContentSource) and that didn’t work

Next, the :nameofcontentsource – this is the artificial name you gave the content source over in your FAST Content SSA – it’s NOT the URL, UNC Path etc.. of the content!

for example, if in your FAST Content SSA, you created a content source on \server1files and called it myfiles

then your ExtendedSearchFilter would look like this: “contentsource:myfiles”

Ok so that’s the end of my explanation of the command itself.

After a few minutes the scope is created and we can test it in a normal FAST search site in sharepoint

Lets say that we indexed a bunch of content on monkeys and we want to see if it turns up in our new scope.

We would search for scope:thisisthescopename monkey

If we get the results we want, then we know the scope is working.

One step beyond this, we can create a special search page for this scope,

create a new FAST search site in sharepoint.

do a bogus search on the sites home page so that it shows you the results page

Edit the results page in the browser

find the web part at the bottom that displays the results

edit that web part

On the right hand side of the page, are the web parts properties, one of them is ‘scope’

put thisisthescopename in that web part and save the page (don’t forget to check in/publish if needed too)

now on your newly modified search page, when you enter a search for monkey, it will limit it to your scope.

Clear FAST Search Content Collection

I had a stubborn FAST Server installation that continued to return search results, even after the content source was removed from FAST!

After stumbling around, someone on the FAST forums at Microsoft suggested clearing the sp collection, but didn’t say how.

Here’s how:

On the fast server, there will be a shortcut to launch a FAST powershell prompt – open that

Enter the command

Clear-FastSearchContentCollection sp

That should clear it out – you’ll need to do full crawls on all your content sources after this is done to repopulate the index, so it’s best not to do this to a production box without understanding how long search will be down.

Also note that in FAST Search for Sharepoint, pretty much everything is stored in the SP collection – It’s my understanding that as of right now, you can only have one collection in FAST for SP.

Snippet of XSLT to create a link to the parent folder of an item in a search result

I wanted to add a link to the parent folder of an item in FAST search results.

I had found an article that said I could use the “SiteName” property.

Unfortunately, this content wasn’t from a SharePoint site, it was from a File Share.

The “SiteName” only returned \\Server\Sharename for each result, never the folder path

For example \\Server\ShareFolder1\SubFolderA\myfile.txt is where the file is

SiteName retured \\ServerShare

I wanted \\Server\Share\Folder1\SubFolderA

The following XSLT uses a few chained string commands to return the desired results

<xsl:if test="isdocument = 'True'">
      <xsl:attribute name="href">
         <xsl:value-of select="substring(url,1,string-length(url) - string-length(title))"/>
      <i>Link to Containing Folder</i>