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Quik Tip

Use minus signs to exclude unwanted results, as in recipe chowder -clam -fish. Remember that spaces matter. Be careful to keep one space before each minus sign, but none between the minus sign and the word following it.
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Search Engine Syntax & Features Comparison Chart

An understanding of the syntax differences among search engines is essential to mastery of these tools and the ability to force them to return the precise results you want. Many of these sites appear to operate similarly, at least on the surface. Yet they can differ substantially in how they understand queries and allow you to filter results, as well as how they rank the hits returned. Consult our search basics page for information on syntax and operators, then experiment with the search engines in the chart provided. To click through to the various search engines, use the HTML chart below. We have also provided a PDF version of the chart for printing.

Search Engine

Boolean

Default

Phrase

Wildcards

Case sensitive

Prefixes

Familyfilter

Altavista

+ - ( )

AND, OR, AND NOT, NEAR ( )

(Simple Srch)

Phrase, then AND

 

 

" "

Yes

* 1-5 characters, must type first 3 characters

No

anchor, applet, domain, host, image, like, link, text, title, url

Yes. Password protected.

Google

OR

-

 

+ to include stop words

AND

" "

Whole word wildcard (*)

No

filetype, daterange,

cache, link, related, info, spell, stocks, site, intitle, allintitle, inurl, allinurl

Yes

All The Web

AND, OR, ANDNOT, ( ),

+, -

( ) means OR

AND

" "

No

No

site, url, link, title, language, filesize, filetype

Yes

Wisenut

+, -

AND

" "

No

No

language

Yes

Teoma

-, OR

 

+ to include stop words

AND

" "

No

No

intitle, inurl, site, inlink, lang, afterdate, beforedate, between date

No