There are two basic Boolean search commands supported in Google, AND and OR. AND searches search for all the search terms, “Car AND Insurance,” (all documents containing both Car and Insurance) while OR searches search for one term or the other, “Car OR Insurance.” (all documents containing either Car or Insurance)
Google defaults to AND searches automatically, so you don’t need to type “AND” into the search engine to get that result.
If you want to find one keyword or another, use the term OR. It’s important that you use all caps, or Google will ignore your request.
To find all documents containing either sausages or biscuits, type: sausages OR biscuits. You can also substitute the | character for OR, so sausages | biscuits searches for the same thing.
If you’re searching for a phrase rather than just a single word, you can group the words together with quotation marks. Searching for “sausage biscuits” will search for only the exact phrase sausage biscuits. It will ignore sausage and cheese biscuits. Searching for “sausage biscuits” |”cheese sauce” searches for either the exact phrase sausage biscuits or the exact phrase cheese sauce.
If you’re searching for more than one phrase or keyword in addition to the Boolean, you can group them with parenthesis, such as recipes gravy (sausage | biscuit) to search for gravy recipes for either sausages or biscuits. You could even combine exact phrases and search for “sausage biscuit” (
Find Exactly What You Want
Sometimes you want to exclude a keyword from Google searches, and sometimes you want to include a word that Google thinks is too common and usually excludes.
Google automatically ignores many common words, such as “and,” “or,” “of,” “a,” etc. It also ignores some single digits or letters. This is usually not a bad thing, because the common words would just slow searches down and not yield better results.
Occasionally it might be important to include one of these words in your search results. There are two ways to do this. One technique is to use quotation marks. Anything inside quotation marks is automatically included in the search, and the search will include the exact phrase. For instance, “Rocky I” searches for the exact phrase Rocky I and will not find lyrics to “I Love Rocky Road.”
Another way to force common words in your searches is with the plus sign. Searching for Rocky +I would find references to the movie and the Weird Al song. Make sure that you do put a space before the plus sign and do not put a space between the plus sign and the search word you want to include. Otherwise, the forced inclusion won’t work.
In some search engines, you’d exclude words by using the “NOT” syntax. This doesn’t work with Google. Use the minus sign instead.
If you were researching health issues, and you wanted to find out about pot bellies, you wouldn’t want to find out about pot-bellied pigs. To conduct this search, you could type “pot bellied” -pig. Just as with the plus sign, put a space before the minus sign but do not put a space between the minus sign and the word or phrase you want excluded.
You can also exclude a phrase by enclosing it in quotation marks, so if you were researching livestock swine, you could search for pigs -”pot bellied” to exclude any mention of pot-bellied pigs. This wouldn’t exclude pages that talked about pig bellies, because it only excludes the exact phrase “pot bellied.”
How to Search Only the Body Text of Pages in Google
Ignore Links, Titles, and URLs. Occasionally you might want to restrict your searches to only the text of Web sites and ignore all the links, Titles, and URLs. This might be useful if you wanted to find Web pages that were talking about other Web sites. The command to search only the body text is intext: To find Web pages talking about Google, for example, you could search for:
You can also use the variation allintext: Allintext searches for all of the specified words in the body text, but it can’t be combined with other commands.
How to Search Within Web Site Titles
- Find Web Pages by Title. The “title” of a Web page is the name of the page as it appears on the top of your Web browser. For instance, the title of this page is How to Search Within Web Site Titles Using Google’s Intitle: Syntax.
Sometimes you may want to find Web pages where one or more words appear in the title of the page. For instance, many Web pages may mention feeding iguanas, even if that’s not the main focus of the page. If you’d like to find a page dedicated to iguana feeding, you can use the Google syntax intitle: to force Google to only list results that have the word “feeding” in the title. Do not put a space between the colon and the next word. The search would look something like this:
This will find Web pages that are relevant to the keyphrase “feeding iguana,” and it will only list results that have the word “feeding” in the title.
If you’d like to restrict the search further, you could search for:
You can also use the syntax allintitle: which only list results where all the words in the key phrase are in the title.
How to Restrict Your Search to Specific File Types
- Find by File Type. Google can let you restrict your searches to only certain file types. This can be very helpful if you’re looking specifically for file types, such as PowerPoint, (ppt) Word, (doc) or Adobe PDF.
To restrict your search to a specific file type, use the filetype: command. For example, try searching for:
You can use this same syntax with Google Desktop. To search for that forgotten widget report, try:
widget report filetype:doc
How to Use Google to Search Withing a Single Web Site
Ever want to use Google to search a single Web site?
You can use Google’s site: syntax to restrict your search to a single Web site. Make sure there’s no space between site: and your Web site. Follow with a space and then your search terms. You don’t need to use the “http://” portion of your URL.
site:googlepowersearch.com power search
his same search can be widened to include all the Web sites within a domain.
Google’s site: syntax can be mixed with other syntax
How to Restrict Your Google Search to Specific Domains or Specific Countries
- Easy Google Trick to Find Better Results. Most Web sites have a .com domain name. Sometimes it’s better to restrict your searches to other domains, such as .edu or .net.
One great example of this is if you are looking for information about textbooks, but you didn’t want to buy a textbook. An unrestricted Google search would mostly yield results from Web sites selling textbooks. One way to avoid this problem is to restrict your search to American universities. To do this, you’d search for:
You can use this to restrict searches are to US government sites site:gov, or only specific countries site:uk. You can combine the site: syntax with many other types of Google syntax
I’m Feeling Lucky ButtonTM – Are You Feeling Lucky?
One of the most notable objects on the Google Web search is the I’m Feeling LuckyTM button. The button may have been named as a play on the Clint Eastwood line in the movie Dirty Harry.
“Do you feel lucky, punk? Well, do you?”
Ordinarily when you type in a key phrase in a Google search, you press the search button, (you can also just press return or enter on your keyboard) and Google returns a results page that shows multiple Web sites matching your search phrase. The I’m Feeling LuckyTM button skips the search results page and goes directly to the first ranked page for that search phrase.
If you type “white house” in the search box and press I’m Feeling LuckyTM you’ll go straight to www.whitehouse.gov. If you type “apple” into the search box and press I’m Feeling LuckyTM you’ll go directly to Apple Computer’s Web site.
I’m Feeling LuckyTM is very handy if you’re fairly confident that the first result in the search engine is going to be exactly the page you want to find. It saves time and clicking to just go to the page with the first click. Using the I’m Feeling LuckyTM button is also a common game for Google bombs. It adds an element of surprise to the joke.
So, for starters here is a query that will give you a search results page of unprotected directories:
-inurl(html|htm|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size
But, this is kind of boring. Too many unknown program files, text files, web pages etc. Let’s narrow it down. You can narrow it down by looking for something in the name of a file in the list, or by the file type, or both.
For example, this query tries to find any types of files about Jennifer Lopez. Within the directories I found music, image and movie files.
-inurl(html|htm|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size +”jennifer lopez”
Let’s say that we wanted to find any movie files in WMV or AVI format:
-inurl(htm|html|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size +(wmv|avi)
Or audio files in WMA or MP3 format:
-inurl(htm|html|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size +(wma|mp3)
Or images in JPG or GIF format:
-inurlhtm|html|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size +(jpg|gif)
You can get more specific by specifying both the file types and a search word to hopefully find in the name. For example, the following will attempt to find the infamous Paris Hilton video tape:
-inurlhtm|html|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +size +(wmv|avi) “paris hilton”
Or, you can even take a guess at the file name someone might call it:
-inurl(htm|html|php) intitle:”index of” +”last modified” +”parent directory” +description +(“paris_hilton.wmv”|”paris_hilton.avi”)
So there you go. You can combine various search terms and experiment with this. As you’ve seen, this is not an exact science. The directory pages you bring up may have many or even all files which are unrelated to what you are looking for. But, it does make some good hits very often.
Files containing juicy info
Squid cache server reports. Google Search: “cacheserverreport for” “This analysis was produced by calamaris”
Admin rates this entry 5 out of 10.
Submitted: 2003-06-24 12:41:16
Added by: Admin
These are squid server cache reports. Fairly benign, really except when you consider using them for evil purposes. For example, an institution stands up a proxy server for their internal users to get to the outside world. Then, the internal user surf all over to their hearts content (including intranet pages cuz well, the admins are stupid) Voila, intranet links show up in the external cache report. Want to make matters worse for yourself as an admin? OK, configure your external proxy server as a trusted internal host. Load up your web browser, set your proxy as their proxy and surf your way into their intranet. Not that I’ve noticed any examples of this in this google list. *COUGH* *COUGH* *COUGH* unresolved DNS lookups give clues *COUGH* *COUGH* (’scuse me. must be a furball) OK, lets say BEST CASE scenario. Let’s say there’s not security problems revealed in these logs. Best case scenario is that outsiders can see what your company/agency/workers are surfing.
Ganglia Cluster Reports
Google Search: intitle:”Ganglia” “Cluster Report for”
Admin rates this entry 2 out of 10.
Submitted: 2003-06-24 12:44:17
Added by: Admin
These are server cluster reports, great for info gathering. Lesse, what were those server names again?
ICQ chat logs, please…
Google Search: intitle:”Index of” dbconvert.exe chats
Admin rates this entry 2 out of 10.
Submitted: 2003-06-24 12:45:51
Added by: Admin
ICQ (http://icq.com) allows you to store the contents of your online chats into a file. These folks have their entire ICQ directories online. On purpose?
AIM buddy lists
Google Search: buddylist.blt
Admin rates this entry 4 out of 10.
Submitted: 2003-06-24 14:21:05
Added by: Admin
These searches bring up common names for AOL Instant Messenger “buddylists”. These lists contain screen names of your “online buddies” in Instant Messenger. Not that’s not too terribly exciting or stupid unless you want to mess with someone’s mind, and besides, some people make these public on purpose. The thing that’s interesting are the files that get stored ALONG WITH buddylists. Often this stuff includes downloaded pictures, resumes, all sorts of things. This is really for the peepers out there, and it’ possible to spend countless hours rifling through people’s personal crap. Also try buddylist.blt, buddy.blt, buddies.blt.
site:edu admin grades
Google Search: site:edu admin grades
I never really thought about this until I started coming up with juicy examples for DEFCON 11.. A few GLARINGLY bad examples contain not only student grades and names, but also social security numbers, securing the highest of all googledork ratings!
I could go on forever here..lets get to the actual searches!