Windows Vista search index notoriously loosed .pdf filter

22.3.2010 Yesterday evening the index was ready; however, it has not indexed the pdf files! I look in the web and see that there is some information about .pdf filters only indexing the file name…

23.3.2010 What I found out: apparently, SearchIndexer was only crawling the file names (called properties) with the “Standard Settings” I had reset. It has lost the filter for PDF, which is installed when Adobe Reader is installed. I reinstall AdobeReader 9.x, touch some .pdf Files, and search for some words in the context – the files appear immediately.

I see whether I can force an update of only the pdf files (I do not want to touch them all, to avaoid loosing the file data): maybe checking and unchecking the file type .pdf in the inexer options: no, Vista warns that the index has to be rebuilt for that also; I check the full-text search again and allow Vista to rebuild the index. I fear this will take two weeks again.

07:41 OpenedFileView: C:\Users\steier\Documents\papers_einsortiert\BNFL2002_Sellafield.pdf; I try whether this file is in the index: it is!

08:30 OpenedFileView: C:\Users\steier\Documents\Arbeit\mails\erledigt081002\E.M.Wild to P.Steier, Poster.eml: I try whether the content of the .ppt attached to this mail is found: yes, it is!


Again Vista seems to have lost the Adobe .pdf filter, it is grayed out in the indexing options. Presently, it still finds some pdf’s, but progrssively less. I think if I open a pdf, it disappears from the next search! These companies are a complete bunch of idiots. Fast full text search is an absolute requirement for productive work – who has another opinion probably has some 25 files and is a doddler playing with the computer only.

I decide to reinstall Adobe Reader X and hope this installs the filter. The Windows installer gives a strange message that the installer is installed incorrectly? Actually, Reader 9.4.5 is still installed, and cannot be deinstalled, because of the same stupid message.

I will make a system restore to the oldest restore point.

Unfortunately, this does not work! Vista stores only the least recent restore points, and apparently the problem was older than one month (I did not recognize it immediately). And the installer is completely broken; neither installing nor deinstalling anything works.

I try to repait the registry, but it seems to be ok. And Vista does not find any bugs in with sfc /scannow. The msiserver service is not running an net start msiserver just says that the service could not be started.

I decid to do a repair installation. I have an OEM Vista, so no installation disk. I find somebody who share a link to an iso image, and I burn the DVD. Then I find out my Vista Ultimate Key with some public domain software. Then I do a repair install; before that I do backups from all data which I think is important.

The first install says the disk is too full. I have to delete some temporary stuff, since my disk is too full. Accidently, I remove my notes on this topic (were on the desktop instead of sorted in). So I write from memory, without links etc.

The second repair install says that some software is incompatible: Windows Poer Shell; web says:  on  O.S Vista the Powershell program is listed as (Windows Management Framework Core KB968930). Open installed Windows Updates and locate this listing – uninstall.

However, this seems to be stuck in the middle of the deinstallation. May need the msiserver?

This Windows stuff is really pure ***. I think I have to throw away this two-year old, EUR 3000 computer; after bad experience, I know that setting up a Computer yourself from scratch takes some 80 hours of work, and finally not all will be ok again (i.e. ssh tunnels through loopback devices, etc.).

… hours later …

Apparently, did not fail completely. Therefore I censored the last paragraph. Still runs, and is now doing some updates (approximately 90). I think this means that the Installer works again.

Unfortunately, the sound stopped working. I reinstall the drivers for sound from the disk which came with the computer, but no improvement. I do not want to reboot the computer presently, since the Windows update is still running.

I install some workaround from This requires a reboot also. I will note later what happens.

After a few reboots, and downloading drivers from Toshiba, sound works. I apply the bugfix for Search Indexer changing the time stamp of .eml files, rendering any backup strategy impossible.

… three days later …

I find out that sleep mode (hibernate) no lenger works. It is no longer available in the start menu, and in the power saving options. I lear that one has to type “powercfg -h on” on a command line prompt as administrator to enable this ( This is great fun, took only about 1 hour to solve. I have the feeling that patching one hole always opens another.

… 2011-11-20

After all, I have also reenabled screen rotation when I rotate the screen from laptop to tablet mode: I have to install something called ToshibaTabletPCExtension_v1001.exe, which I find ina subfolder of my “Installed Sofware Downloads” folder; unfortunately, while trying to find this, I have installed some “Toshiba value added …” junk on my computer. I hope it does not cause to much problems.


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