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There's a saying that "It's not what you know, but who you know."  I think it even more appropriate today to say "It's not what you know, but if you know where to find it."

 

Here are some tips and tricks that will enable you to find what you're looking for without having to wait for someone else's response.

 

1. Use Adobe Reader to search all the documentation at once

 

Adobe Reader has a great feature that allows you to search all PDF documents in a directory.  To take advantage of this feature, just unzip all of your BMC documentation (e.g. all the guides from BMC Remedy AR System) into one directory.  Now, when you select Edit -> Search within Acrobat Reader you'll get a window that looks like this:

Adobe_search.JPG

Type in the keyword you want to find, select the "All PDF Documents in" radio button and then select the directory where you put your PDFs.  The search output will appear, broken down by each PDF file (which in this case will be each guide) and allow you to browse through the results to find the section that answers your question.

 

2. Use the BMC DN Community Search feature

 

This one is pretty obvious, but here's a sub-trick that will help you find info even faster.  If remember that something was posted on your question previously, and you can remember who posted it, you can include their username in the search and it will cut down on your results.  For example, if you search for "encryption easter" you'd find my postings around the subject of encryption.

 

3. Use archive search engines for other sources of information

 

Google is the obvious choice, but did you know that there is a mailing-list for AR System related issues called ARSList?  And it can be searched in two ways:

 

Through the ARSList page itself: http://listserv.rbugs.com/cgi-bin/wa.exe?S1=arslist&X=-

or through a consolidated search engine called "Nabble": http://www.nabble.com/ARS-%28Action-Request-System%29-f716.html

 

4. Picking key words

 

  Another “trick” to finding information on the web is to figure out the right key words to use.  There’s no hard and fast answer to how to pick the right keywords, but here are my tips:

 

  • Concentrate on unique terms.  The more common the keywords you choose, the lower the chance of getting back results that apply.
    • Example: I want to find out the maximum amount of memory for a Dell Latitude D600 laptop
      • Bad: “Latitude”
      • Good: “D600”

 

  • Add in additional terms where possible to increase the search criteria.  The more words, typically the better.
    • Bad: “D600”
    • Better: “D600 memory”
    • Good: “Dell Latitude D600 memory maximum”

 

  • If you have an idea of the general web page where you’d expect the information to be, include a keyword about that as well.  These could include standards organizations (NIST, IEEE), information services (CNET, BusinessWeek), or well known databases (Wikipedia).
    • Example: I want to find out what a “global zone” is with regard to Solaris
      • Bad: “Zone”
      • Better: “Solaris global zone”
      • Best: “Solaris global zone Wiki”

 

5. Using "find" within your web browser

 

  This one isn't as needed anymore since many search engines will highlight your key word on the page when results are displayed.  But if not, the “find” capability within the browser can come in handy.  Just hit Ctrl-F and type in your key word.  This will cause the browser to "jump" to the next instance of that key word (or tell you that the key word doesn't exist on the page).  This is really useful for finding a particular product from a product list - e.g. on the Support Central documentation site.

 

Obviously, there are many more tips and tricks that can be used to find informaiton quickly.  But hopefully this gives you some additional "bullets" that will enable you to find what you're looking for quickly and efficiently.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.