Google Isn’t Just For The Web

Published on: April 27, 2004
Last Updated: April 27, 2004

Google Isn’t Just For The Web

Published on: April 27, 2004
Last Updated: April 27, 2004

The difference between searching on the Web and searching on many mid-size and large corporate intranets is that on the Web you can always find what you’re looking for.

Simply turn to Google and run a search, and the information you want is usually on the first page.

Why can’t your intranet’s search tool be that effective? Well it can, because now you can run Google on your intranet.

Google’s enterprise division has actually been offering a hardware and software search solution for two years now, but in typical Google fashion the company has kept quiet until it was sure it had worked all the bugs out and streamlined the tool. Now it’s ready to make some noise.

Ease of use is one of the chief reasons to go with Google; you can have it up and running on your site only a few hours after receiving it.

Start by visiting Google’s enterprise site, which offers several white papers for research, and contact a sales rep.

After you’ve made your purchase, Google will send you a 1U rack-mounted server with the search software installed.

Run through the configuration settings to tell Google what to index. You can set multiple URLs for spidering and even block out sections that it should ignore.

Besides indexing an intranet’s pages, Google understands more than 250 files types, including PDFs and Microsoft Word documents, and will index them if they’re connected to the site.

Improve your results by setting up “key matches” for common searches, ensuring that searches on a particular hot topic will always turn up the best resources.

You can also customize Google’s search results page by modifying the style sheets, or can get the search results in XML and integrate them into your intranet’s existing pages.

According to Dave Girouard, the general manager of Google Enterprise, intranet search is a previously unsolved problem, and many companies have turned to solutions that are difficult to install and don’t turn out consistently relevant results.

Google fixes that by offering a package solution that installs quickly and that uses the same finely-tuned search algorithms that it uses on its Internet search.

Those algorithms have been tweaked a bit, of course, since the Internet Google relies heavily on page ranking-meaning it looks at how many Web pages link to a URL-to calculate relevancy, something that isn’t as important on corporate intranets.

In addition to indexing words and looking at page rankings, there are more than 100 other variables, Girouard says, and they’re always being improved.

“Until we can guarantee that the first result you get is the exact one that you’re looking for, we’re not done yet,” he said.

Pricing for Google starts at $32,000 for sites with up to 150,000 documents, which includes hardware, software, and two years of support.

The pricing increases with larger sites, topping out at $600,000 for sites with up to 15 million documents.

Add in other benefits, like the fact that Google is self-monitoring — sending e-mails automatically to the administrator when it detects a problem — and you’ve got an elegant, intuitive search solution.

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Written by Bobby

Bobby Lawson is a seasoned technology writer with over a decade of experience in the industry. He has written extensively on topics such as cybersecurity, cloud computing, and data analytics. His articles have been featured in several prominent publications, and he is known for his ability to distill complex technical concepts into easily digestible content.