1.2.10 GPL (GNU General Public License)    
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ASPseek is an Internet search engine.




ASPseek is an Internet search engine software developed by SWsoft and licensed as free software under GNU GPL.

ASPseek consists of an indexing robot, a search daemon, and a CGI search frontend. It can index as many as a few million URLs and search for words and phrases, use wildcards, and do a Boolean search. Search results can be limited to time period given, site or Web space (set of sites) and sorted by relevance (PageRank is used) or date.

ASPseek is optimized for multiple sites (threaded index, async DNS lookups, grouping results by site, Web spaces), but can be used for searching one site as well. ASPseek can work with multiple languages/encodings at once (including multibyte encodings such as Chinese) due to Unicode storage mode. Other features include stopwords and ispell support, a charset and language guesser, HTML templates for search results, excerpts, and query words highlighting.

ASPseek is written in C++ using the STL library, and uses mix of SQL database and binary files for storage.

Here are some key features of "ASPseek":

Ability to index and search through several millions of documents

· Using ASPseek, you can build a database and search through many sites, and results for each query will be returned fast even if you have a few millions of documents indexed. Of course, this depends on hardware, so don't expect "good old" i486 machine to handle every site in .com domain. Everything depends on CPU(s), memory, disk speed etc. So do your own tests before you buy dedicated hardware.

· The fact that ASPseek is optimized for high volumes should not stop you from using it to search your own site that contains few hundred of documents - it works there as well.

Very good relevancy of results

· The purpose of search engine is to find what user wants. There can be thousands of URLs found as a result of search query, but it can all be irrelevant, so user will be unsatisfied.

· Output results in ASPseek are sorted by relevancy (or rank), but rank calculation is not an easy task. Developers tried their best to incorporate greatest and latest techniques into ASPseek engine while maintaining good search speed.

Ispell support

· When ASPseek is used with ispell support, searchd(1) can optionally find all forms for all specified words (example: create --> create OR created OR creates). So, it allows you to find the word in all of different forms.

Unicode storage mode

· ASPseek can store information about documents in Unicode, thus making possible to implement a multi-language search engine. So, you can index and search the documents in English, Russian and even Chinese, all in one database.

HTTP, HTTPS, HTTP proxy, FTP (via proxy) protocols

· As ASPseek is a Web search engine, it uses HTTP protocol to index sites. ASPseek also supports secure https:// protocol. FTP protocol is not supported directly, but you can use proxy (like squid) and index FTP sites via proxy.

· ASPseek supports "basic authorization" feature of HTTP so you can index password-protected areas (for example private information in your intranet).

Text/html and text/plain document types support

· ASPseek can understand documents written in HTML, and plain text documents. These are the most popular formats in Internet.

· Other formats, such as PDF, RTF, etc, can be supported with the help of any external program/script which is able to convert that formats to HTML or plain text.

Multithreaded design, async DNS resolver etc

· ASPseek uses POSIX threads, that means that one process have many threads running in parallel. So index downloads documents from many sites, and search daemon processes many search queries simultaneously. This not only helps ASPseek to scale well on SMP (multiprocessor) systems, but also improves indexing speed, because in case of one thread most time will be spent on waiting for data from network.

· One thing that slow indexing process down a lot is DNS lookup (a process of determining IP address using server name). To avoid delays, asynchronous lookups (lookup is done by separate dedicated processes) and IP address cache are implemented.


· Stopwords are a words that have no meaning by itself. Examples: is, are, at, this. Searching for at is useless, so such words are excluded from search query. Stopwords are also excluded from database during indexing, so database becomes smaller and faster.

· There is no "built-in" stopwords in ASPseek, they are loaded during start-up from files. Many stopword files for different languages comes with ASPseek.

Charset guesse

· Some broken or misconfigured servers don't tell clients the charset in which they provide content. If you are indexing such servers, or using ASPseek to index ftp servers (FTP protocol does know nothing about charsets), charset guesser can be used to deal with it. Charset guesser uses word frequency tables (called langmaps) to determine correct charset.

Robot exclusion standard (robots.txt) support

· ASPseek fully supports this standard. It is intended for web site authors for telling the robot (for example, ASPseek's index(1)) to skip indexing some directories of their sites.

· For more information see

Settings to control network bandwidth usage and Web servers load

· You can precisely control network bandwidth that index(1) uses. Exactly, you can limit the bandwidth (expressed in bytes per second) used by index(1) for given time-of-day. For example, you can limit the bandwidth during business hours so people at your office will not experience slow Internet.

· You can also set the minimum time between two queries to the same Web server, so it will not be overloaded and got down to its knees while you run index(1).

Real-time asynchronous indexing

· Some search engines requires that search should be stopped for the time of database update. ASPseek does not need it, so you can search non-stop.

· More to say, there is a special mode of indexing called "real-time" indexing. You can use it for small number of documents, and as far as such document is downloaded and processed, changes are immediately visible in search interface. This feature is a great help if you are building search engine for pages with rapidly-changing content such as online news etc.

· Note that number of documents in "real-time" database is limited. It's about 1000 on our hardware (your mileage may vary), and the more documents you have in "real-time" database, the slower will be speed of indexing into that (and only that) database. This will not affect search speed though.

· Documents from "real-time" database are moved to normal database after running index(1) in a normal way.

Sorting results by relevance or by date

· Search engines usually returns most relevant results first. But if you are looking for latest pages, you can tell ASPseek to sort results by last modification date, so recently modified (or created) pages will be displayed first.

Excerpts, query words highlighting

· Excerpt is a piece of found document with words searched for highlighted, just to give an idea of what the document is about. You can customize the number of excerpts displaying and their length. If you will disable excerpts, the beginning of document will be displayed.

· Every found document is accompanied with the "Cached" link. ASPseek keeps a local compressed copy of every document processed, so user can see the the whole document with (optional) highlighted words that were searched for, even if it has been removed from original site (that happens sometimes).

Grouping results by site

· Results from one site can be grouped together. If grouping by sites is on, only two results are displayed from the same site by default, and user can see other pages from the same site by following a "More results from ..." link.


· Clones are identical documents at different locations. They are detected and grouped together, so user will not be presented with a page full of URLs to the identical documents.

· Clone detection is usually limited by one site (so identical documents from different sites are not counted as clones), but you can change this by recompiling ASPseek with --disable-clones-by-site option.

Spaces and subsets

· Space is the set of sites. So, if you want to provide the search narrowed to some area, you can create a space and search within that space. Only whole sites (e.g. are allowed to be included in space.

· Subsets can also be used to restrict the search. You can create subset and put URL mask (like into that, and then limit search scope to only given subset.

· You can restrict search scope to not only one but several subsets or spaces.

HTML templates for easy-to-customize search results

· You can customize your search pages, so they will look like and be seamlessly integrated with the rest of your site. This is done by simple editing of search template file.


gzip -dc aspseek-1.2.10.tar.gz | tar xf -
cd aspseek-1.2.10./configure
make install
Last updated on May 5th, 2005

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