Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Beagle Correction

A while ago, I posted a comparison of Beagle and the new Google Desktop Beta release. I had since removed Beagle, and had been using Google Desktop exclusively. I received a comment from a Beagle developer, Joe Shaw, and he thought I simply had encountered a bug in Beagle, and that Beagle does indeed index all the text in documents not just the meta data.

Well, I have since upgraded to Fedora 7, and I became interested to see whether a newer version of Beagle indeed would find files that it couldn't find before.

So today, I installed Beagle again, and I did the same search that I had done before, looking for a PDF file with the search query of "Small is Beautiful". As you can see from below, it is now able to find the file that it couldn't find before, and matches what Google Desktop does.

As you can also see, the indexing is not complete yet, but its only been a few hours since I reinstalled. At this point, the large index size problem also seems to be gone. I cannot report yet what the final size will be, until its done, but it is a little over 50% of the size of the Google Desktop index, but I don't know how much more it has to go. It would be nice if there was an index status page somewhere, like in Google Desktop, so you could see what the progress was in indexing your content.

So, it seems that Beagle has improved with Fedora 7, which includes Beagle I congratulate the Beagle team, and I will continue to use both on Fedora so I can see how they fair against each other as they both mature.

In the case of RHEL, which I have one RHEL 5 desktop, I can only use Google Desktop, as RHEL will not ship with Mono, which Beagle requires. It would be nice if Beagle didn't require Mono, so it could be included with RHEL, because I would love to compare it on RHEL as well.

Thanks to Joe Shaw for commenting and looking into what was going on with my documents that Beagle couldn't find.


Beagle finished indexing my system, and so now I can see the total index size of Beagle compared to Google Desktop. The results are considerably improved from before. As you can see from the below image, Beagle still creates a larger index, but the difference isn't as dramatic. Before, I saw that Google Desktop had an index that was 98% smaller, but now Google Desktop's index is only approximately 23% smaller.

This is very good news indeed, and great work by the Beagle developers!

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