Wednesday, April 29, 2009

PDF Ifilters in SharePoint

We have more PDF files than anything else in our SharePoint sites, by a huge margin. We also have some pretty over-sized hardware, so up until recently, we have been able to get by with the single-threaded free Adobe ifilter.

When the Foxit ifilter was released I did some testing and could not see sufficient benefit to make the change. I am pretty sure my testing was flawed, as others have confirmed the superior performance of the Foxit ifilter. I carefully retested it and with a relatively small sample size (less than 2000 files) I got a benefit of not quite double the throughput. I think that with a larger sample the benefit would be greater, but the successful test is sufficient for my needs and allows me to justify this purchase.

Checking Ifilter Registry Entries

Along the way I experienced some difficulties. The instructions for installing the Foxit ifilter are very simple, and sometimes they work as they should, but not always. If you are doing a first time installation of a PDF ifilter, follow Foxit's instructions carefully. For a replacement of Adobe, you simply uninstall the Adobe ifilter and then you install Foxit. I did this uninstall/install cycle a couple times. Either of the uninstalls may not always happen cleanly, so you may need to get out your SharePoint/IIS/Windows hammer and do a bit of tapping.

As I was testing, I was getting an error on all the PDF's that there was no ifilter installed. I ended up manually modifying two registry keys, at first just to put back Adobe so I could test that. Then the uninstall/reinstall worked, but I still checked it just to be sure. My problems could have been from not following procedures (starts, stops, etc.) or possibly from the install / uninstall not being complete. Checking these keys was a big part of my solution.

The two keys are:
  • [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office Server\12.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension\.pdf]
  • [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Web Server Extensions\12.0\Search\Setup\ContentIndexCommon\Filters\Extension\.pdf]
Their multi-string value should be the appropriate GUID for the classid for the ifilter you are using (I think that's what this is):
  • {987f8d1a-26e6-4554-b007-6b20e2680632} Foxit
  • {4C904448-74A9-11D0-AF6E-00C04FD8DC02} Adobe 6
  • {E8978DA6-047F-4E3D-9C78-CDBE46041603} Adobe 8 (or 9 or 64 bit??)
You also need to be sure to start and stop the search services and why not throw in an IIS reset while you are at it (hammer). Of course a reboot has the same effect (more hammering). After doing that, to make your tests cleaner, it's good to get the setup primed. You can do that by running it twice (reset the content in between), or just enough the first time to be sure that everything is running. If you monitor the index you will see a minute or two delay on an un-primed setup.

I am looking forward to getting this into a production environment with hundreds of thousands of PDFs. I hope I won't need my hammers, but at least I know where to look if it doesn't seem to be working.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Jeff Beck Cleveland Set List

In response to a request for a Cleveland (April 15, 2009) Jeff Beck at the House of Blues set list:

1 Beck's Bolero 
2 The Pump 
3 You Never Know 
4 Cause We've Ended as Lovers 
5 Behind the Veil 
6 Blast from the East 
7 Stratus 
8 Angel 
9 Drums 
10 Led Boots 
11 Nadia 
12 Space Boogie 
13 Goodbye Porkpie Hat 
14 Blue Wind 
15 Bass 
16 Day in the Life 
17 Big Block 
Encore Break 
18 Where Were you 
19 Scottish One 
20 Theme from Peter Gunn 

Tal Wilkenfeld-Bass 
Vinnie Colaiuta-Drums 
Jason Rebello-Keys 
Jeff Beck-Guitar 

You can probably find an active torrent of this show. I have heard two very similar sounding recordings (OK, but A- grade). 

The show was a nice display of Jeff's guitar prowess and thoroughly enjoyable. A sonic treat. I was very disappointed that the "Jeff" album was not represented (I hoped it would be featured). Jeff's last three albums have been explorations in this direction, with Jeff being the pinnacle of the bunch. 

Here's the set list for the show I am seeing tonight:

Cleveland Orchestra - Sir Colin Davis, guest conductor

Hector Berlioz - Overture to Beatrice and Benedict

W.A. Mozart Piano Concerto No. 25 in C major, K503
1. Allegro maestoso
2. Andante
3. Allegretto
Mitsuko Uchida, piano


Jean Sibelius Symphony No. 2 in D major, Opus 43
1. Allegretto
2. Andante, ma rubato
3. Vivacissimo
4. Finale: Allegro moderato

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Travis Review

This is the text from my gushing review I posted yesterday on

What a lovely, lovely show. All day yesterday I had the Monday blahs. I was wondering how I could get myself up for seeing Travis. I listened to a lot of Travis during the day, and that helped, but it wasn't until Travis started playing that my day turned around. And it really turned around.

As the show progressed, you got the feeling that everyone was having the same beautiful experience. We were all feeling the power of the music. I had seen Travis once before in Detroit, several years ago, and it was the same experience, but on a slightly larger scale. The House of Blues crowd was less than capacity (it was a rainy, crappy Monday night) but that added to the intimacy of the show.

Having checked all the set lists posted on this site, I noticed that "As You Are" was missing. I was sad about that. You could feel that this was a really good show the band was playing - one with lots of positive feelings. When they played "As You Are," it went over the top for me. 

It was a very special Monday. Thank you Travis.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Jeff Beck, Travis, Berlioz, Mozart and Sibelius in 8 Days

Today begins a very full 8 day week of music. I have been looking forward to tonight's Jeff Beck concert at the Cleveland House of Blues for some time. Years, in fact.  Fortunately, Jeff Beck has been touring a lot lately. He fronts a band with the highest caliber of musicianship. 

Next Monday is the great brit-pop group, Travis, also at the Cleveland House of Blues. Travis latest album is similar to their other hauntingly dreary yet uplifting albums, but more electric. 

I am looking forward to seeing both of those shows from the extreme comfort and sonic heaven of the HOB balcony. 

Also a sonic heaven will be the Cleveland Orchestra with guest conductor, Sir Colin Davis next Thursday. Cleveland's Severance Hall is a wonderful place. My employer is sponsoring these concerts, so heavily discounted ($60 tickets for $20) were available. 

Speaking of ticket prices, the Jeff Beck tickets were the most expensive I have purchased for the HOB at $99 each, including the ridiculous fees. You may or may not know, I used to boycott the HOB because they are an out of town company that received tax abatements so they could put local venues out of business. Once I broke my boycott, the flood gates opened, but I still bad- mouth it and the bar stinks (high prices and poor selection).