Simple file searcher that doesn't use baloo or tracker?

Does any one know of one ? Something like kde3’s kfind that can use the find / locate index if needed. :wink: Currently I am having to use midnight commander which is fine but sometimes I want to save the output.

I looked at installing kfind on lxde but it had an enormous number of kde dependencies - :open_mouth: including phonon. :)Must be a noisy search. Odd really as I did think it was still a kde3 application.


If you are happy to use the console, locate (in the package mlocate) will do what you need.

I use Recoll, great for my purposes, you can define what it does & does not index, and you control the indexing. It is available in KDE: Extra

I noticed Recoll but it’s a qt app and I want something for lxde using gtk. I’m guessing it will bring in loads of things I don’t want having gone to a lot of trouble to get just lxde. I can try adding the repo and see just what it will bring in. Maybe like sddm it doesn’t need rather a lot of things that would have been installed if I just said ok to YAST. Doesn’t look to be viable though other than maybe from source.

This is a troublesome area. I can’t for instance believe that a C++ programmer would tie phonon-gstreamer-backend to Kfind unless they have a screw loose… All kfind should do is make use of kernel and maybe bash facilities. Once it gets more complicated than that why have it? Lxde is using openbox which is supposed to support others so if it was stand alone should run it.

Lxde’s pcmanfm search doesn’t function so suppose it’s tied to tracker which I uninstalled as I have no need for it’s capabilities.

There is another but using tracker comes and goes. The only one left seems to be midnight commander and that also has a facility to exclude specified directories. Useful when there can be 100’s of gb about that wont contain what is being searched for.


That’'s my conclusion - that or midnight commander but I really do wonder why some one doesn’t maintain a simple search that will run on any desktop arrangement that uses the same facilities and also hopefully includes the ability to exclude directories.


I’ve never used a graphical frontend for locate, but “catfish” is recommended at the following link

You can install

zypper in mlocate


Note that AFAIK locate can only find files and is based on the full text string entered (which can be only the file name or include parts of the path to the file), not text within the file… But, is lightweight and lightning fast.

Usage is simple… the database locate uses is updated every 24hrs, and must be updated only once(initial population) immediately after install and then after that only if you’re searching for something new that changed within the last 24hrs.


I just found catfish and tried it. Simple test looking for anything called config system wide. It came back with 8,000 odd pretty quickly but not just files and folder, anything with config in it. Need to look more as it may be possible to change that. It also told me that the index needed updating. That happens in seconds.

A better option looks to be spaceFM that come with a separate search facility that is bought up by running it with a search postfix. The official version is the latest one. It installed with 2 start button entries. One for file management and another for search. Same test just came up with folders and files very quickly. It’s a fork of the original pcmanfm and as a file manager has more capability than dolphin. A lot more than pcmanfm. All of dolphin’s current features as far as I can see and some more. Handy because if I want to try common firefox user settings for instance I can create the links from lxde rather than having to do it via kde. Also I can mount kde’s / etc if I need to. There is a lot to take in on their help page


The link to that is built in. One thing I would like to know is just how it is doing the search. Maybe some one can have a read. It’s not clear to me.

From my point of view it lacks 3 things. I can’t copy / paste a search output. Not much of a problem really when searches don’t take a long time. More importantly no content search and no directory exclusion from searches. The directories to be searched can be specified though. Content search isn’t popular because that wont be very fast but my main use is finding system files. I don’t care how long it takes because any other way of finding out about what does what is likely to take a lot lot longer.

:shame:Yes I have even been known to search binaries for text. That really does take a long time.

SpaceFM seems to still be under active development as well. rotfl! I am glad to see some one has some sense.

Many people find baloo type indexing of everything is a bit of a joke so something is needed that can do it the hard way for if it’s needed rather than just doing the lot. I also get the impression that none of the cataloguers make any use of the kernel output when files are changed. I’m 100% sure ms work that way and the fact that files are being indexed is only apparent when the index is initially built. Maybe that has changed and if baloo can be pointed at certain directories I may well use it including file content. The dependencies that c++ can generate though are to me worrying. It can lead to many things only running on one desktop or pollution of the one some one wants to use. Choice of desktop is supposed to be a linux plus - bit of a joke in some ways really.


As I described, you can improve on your results if you include a little bit of the path with your file name.
Also, read the locate MAN page for various options

By default, your example returns every string name that includes “config” in the name, eg sysconfig.
You can search <only> for the specified word (not part of any other word) as follows

locate -b '\config'

And if you were looking specifically for the configuration file for samba, you could include part of the known path, search the following

locate samba/config

As always, there are also good resources on the Internet, eg the following from the Linux Information Project

Since you returned results,
I doubt you really needed to “update indexing” but if you ever need to do so, just run “update” in an elevated console, it’l take only about 30 seconds or so to update your locate database.

I don’t know how much of these command line options are supported in catfish, that’s always the case when a graphical frontend is used.


From what I have seen of spaceFM it’s ideal if some one want a file manager that has all of the facilities in Dolphin and more plus a search. When I installed it in lxde I don’t think anything other than it’s code was added. I’m going to see if it will install on kde for the search. It seems to be quicker than kfind. I have a feeling that it doesn’t use the locate index but not sure. It does allow the directories to be searched to be specified as well - add and remove style. I feel a don’t search a directory option would be better but having to add several to a search isn’t too bad.

There does seem to be a content search plugin for it but as it’s a script I’m not totally sure what it does or how to install it… I’ll have a go sometime tomorrow. There are a number of other plugins as well.


I don’t know about nowadays,
But back a few years (early KDE4?), KDE used its own instance of locate. I remember then, another technology was being introduced with additional capabilities.

The point though is that even if locate might be used in any way, it’d be its own instance and wouldn’t be related to an instance installed through the mlocate package.


:)Yes - now a days is a problem. :sarcastic:Some call it progress.

I just installed spacefm on kde so that I could compare it with kfind. I did searches that would produce several thousand results from /

Kfind without it’s use index option around 2 mins. With index enabled around 12 secs.

Spacefm no index option but did it in about 6 secs. It also found some results in /var that kfind didn’t find. I think that not searching /var ties in with the locate index settings. That also excludes a lot of file types.

To see if spacefm needed some index updating periodically I search for spacef* as I had just installed it. No problem it found them. It does seem to be tied in with inotify some how.

It also has some interesting tricks. My / is on a partition in an ssd and /home is on a totally separate disk. It’s possible to select the partition on the ssd and search just that. It does it by mounting it on /run/media/user name/. The same can be done with any partition. The mounts are maintained across log outs and log ins but the file manager part can unmount them. I found this interesting because I had noticed that mounts can be retained across this and reboots when a disk in a usb dock has actually been mounted in kde. This isn’t the same as open with file manager etc it only happens if the open with another application facility is used. Spacefm can show these as empty mounts. Just like lsblk -a.

john@dhcppc0:~> lsblk -a
sda       8:0    0 119.2G  0 disk  
├─sda1    8:1    0   195M  0 part  /boot/efi
├─sda2    8:2    0  39.1G  0 part  /
├─sda3    8:3    0  29.3G  0 part  
└─sda4    8:4    0   198M  0 part  
sdb       8:16   0 232.9G  0 disk  
├─sdb1    8:17   0    10G  0 part  
├─sdb2    8:18   0    10G  0 part  /var
├─sdb3    8:19   0    10G  0 part  /tmp
├─sdb4    8:20   0 151.1G  0 part  /home/home2
├─sdb5    8:21   0   9.8G  0 part  
└─sdb6    8:22   0   9.8G  0 part  
sdc       8:32   0 931.5G  0 disk  
└─sdc1    8:33   0 931.5G  0 part  
  └─md0   9:0    0 931.5G  0 raid1 /home
sdd       8:48   1 931.5G  0 disk  
└─sdd1    8:49   1 931.5G  0 part  
  └─md0   9:0    0 931.5G  0 raid1 /home
sde       8:64   1         0 disk  
sdf       8:80   1         0 disk  
sdg       8:96   1         0 disk  
sdh       8:112  1         0 disk  
sdi       8:128  1         0 disk  
sr0      11:0    1   4.1G  0 rom   /run/media/john/openSUSE-Leap-42.2-DVD-x86_64028

:’(Under kde spacefm search does include contents. Can’t see how I could have missed that option on lxde but suppose I will have to look again. It can also use size and date. Date is via a calender.

Install size is about 4mb.