All custom properties displayed in Search & Preview result lists must be based on managed properties configured for your SharePoint installation. Custom search properties for Search & Preview search forms can be configured either as searches for managed properties values or as query properties, which are actually custom queries rather than direct property searches.
Therefore, all of the custom properties that you plan to display in search results and all data-column-based search-form fields that you wish to provide must be mapped to managed properties configured in SharePoint. This procedure is outlined below; please see your SharePoint documentation for complete details. See also “Searchable Property Configuration” for details about how to set up a query property for a search form (this type of property does not need to be mapped to a SharePoint managed property).
To set up a SharePoint managed property for use with Search & Preview:
1. Establish the property itself and the mechanism for assigning values to it for each document. There are basically two ways of doing this:
Create a new column in SharePoint.
Use the standard tools of SharePoint to establish a new column for the appropriate site and/or document library. During this process, you will specify a name for the column, its data type and options for entering values for the new property.
Establish a system of using META-tags in your HTML pages.
This is a standard technique for adding metadata in the head section of HTML pages. Each META-tag supplies a property name and a value for a given HTML document. The SharePoint crawler automatically reads these and stores their names and values in the search database. See an HTML reference if you are not sure how to use META-tags.
You can use any combination of these techniques on your site.
2. Log onto the SharePoint Central Administration site and run the crawler for the SharePoint SharePoint search engine as described in your SharePoint documentation. Be sure to index all of the parts of your site where you have defined new columns and/or added new META-tags. Wait for the crawler to finish indexing.
3. From the SharePoint Central Administration site, go the shared services administration site for SharePoint and create a new managed property that maps to your new column or META-tag name. This is a standard feature of the SharePoint search engine, so see your SharePoint documentation for details. The procedure is outlined below, though some of the details might be slightly different for your installation:
Open the page for administrating your SharePoint search feature; this is usually one of the links listed under the Shared Services Administration heading in the left-side navigation bar of the administration site. This should be the same shared service that you used to start the crawler.
Click on the Search settings link under the Search heading to open the Configure Search Settings page.
Click on the Metadata property mappings link under the Crawl Settings heading. This takes you to the Metadata Property Mappings page.
Click on the New Managed Property button to open the New Managed Property page. Use the controls offered here to create a new managed property and map it to your column or META-tag name. Note that you can map the same managed property to any number of META-tag names and/or SharePoint columns. You might use this, for example, to compensate for differences in the META-tags and column names as they are used by various authors and sites and to unite these under a single managed property. Note that SharePoint columns often appear twice in the crawled-property list (the source of your mappings); choose the one that is named “ows_“, not the one that is named simply ““.
4. Your new property has now been crawled with values in the database and is furthermore now “managed”, which means, among other things, that it is searchable. You will now be able to add it to your Search & Preview search-tab configurations and ultimately to your search forms, result lists, sorting controls and/or refiner controls. They are also available for use in search-result actions and quick filters.
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