Search connects people to the information they need to get their jobs done. General productivity search solutions increase employee efficiency by connecting a broad set of people to a broad set of information. High-value search applications drive measurable returns on investment (ROI) by helping a specific set of people make the most of a specific set of information. Until now, organizations have had to purchase multiple products to address both scenarios—no single search solution was able to deliver the right functionality at the right price, forcing organizations to incur unnecessary costs, such as:

  • Software costs – licenses, support, and maintenance costs for separate products.

  • Headcount costs – dedicated positions required to design, deploy, and manage different search solutions.

  • Opportunity costs – mediocre general productivity search and limited deployment of high-value search applications.

When assessing the landscape of enterprise search offerings from Microsoft, you should review the capabilities of the various products and match them to the needs of your organization. As the enterprise search maturity of your organization grows, so may the need for features and capabilities of the search technologies you use. Microsoft has produced a broad set of enterprise search capabilities based on SharePoint 2010 that serves the enterprise as growth, maturity, and changing business needs redefine your organizational enterprise search requirements.

Microsoft provides SharePoint Foundation 2010 and Search Server 2010 Express free of charge for you to use on licensed Windows® servers. These entry level products offer the ability to crawl and index content and provide a user interface for executing queries against the catalog of crawled content.

SharePoint Server 2010 and Microsoft Search Server 2010 offer improved scalability and options for indexing content from many different sources, while fulfilling the configurability, manageability, and reporting requirements of your organization. SharePoint Server 2010 provides a great platform for creating general productivity search applications.

FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint is a new product from Microsoft, and it delivers the power of FAST with the simplicity and total cost of ownership (TCO) benefits of Microsoft products. FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint delivers the best general productivity search on the market AND makes it easy and economical to build high-value search applications. FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint further enhances the crawling, content processing, user interface, and scale of SharePoint Server 2010.

In this article

Feature comparison

You can use the following table to make quick comparisons of the enterprise search features provided by each product in the SharePoint 2010 Products.

Feature

SharePoint Foundation 2010

Search Server 2010 Express

Search Server 2010

SharePoint Server 2010

FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint

Basic site search

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Best Bets

Y

Y

Y

Y

Visual Best Bets

Y

Similar Results

Y

Duplicate Results

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Search Scopes

Y

Y

Y

Y

RSS Feeds for Search Results

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Alerts for Search Results

Y*

Y*

Y*

Y*

Advanced Search Page

Y

Y

Y

Y

Search Enhancement based on User Contexts

Y

Crawled and Managed Properties

Y

Y

Y

Y**

Entity Extraction

Y

Query Federation

Y

Y

Y

Y

Query Suggestions

Y

Y

Y

Y

Sort Results on Managed Properties or Rank Profiles

Y

Relevancy Tuning by Document or Site Promotions

Y

Y

Y

Y**

Shallow Results Refinement

Y

Y

Y

Y

Deep Results Refinement

Y

Document Preview

Y

Windows 7 Federation

Y

Y

Y

Y

People Search

Y

Y

Phonetic Name Search***

Y

Y

Nickname Search***

Y

Y

Self Search

Y

Y

Social Search

Y

Y

Taxonomy Integration

Y

Y

Multi-Tenant Hosting

Y

Rich Web Indexing Support

Y

* For NTLM environments
** FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint provides enhanced capabilities in these areas.
*** For a subset of the supported languages

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Further reading

For more details about the features and capabilities of Microsoft FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint, download one of the following white papers:

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