Agent Ransack 2014

In this season of big credit card bills and constant requests to ‘Spend, Spend, Spend’ we have a little treat for you that won’t cost a penny, a new version of Agent Ransack (and of course FileLocator Lite).

Both have a more polished look and include loads of improvements, here are the big ones…

User Interface

For anyone who had any, slightly odd, nostalgic affection for the badly drawn wire frame Agent Ransack icon I’ve some bad news… we have a new logo.

It’s a huge improvement and should work much better on dark backgrounds. But that’s not all, almost all elements of the User Interface have been given a make-over and look much better.

New Reports Tab

New Reports Tab

Contents View Tabs

The Contents View is now broken up into three tabs. The standard Summary and Hits tab, which you’ll recognize from previous versions, and now a new Reports Tab.

The Reports tab provides a convenient way to copy/save text information from search results. It’s sort of like Exporting with a preview.

File name matching

In previous versions of Agent Ransack to exclude a group of files you would enter an expression, such as


and then click the ‘Not’ button. But what if you also wanted to add an additional filter, e.g. the file name itself? In previous versions you couldn’t do it, but now you can. If you want to search for all files with the word Holiday in them but exclude mp3 files you can enter something this:


There’s quite a few more expression matching enhancements that you can read about here: DOS Expressions

License agreement changes

There’s a small but important license change. The product is still completely free for personal or commercial use but we now require that commercial users register the product. We don’t think that’s too much to ask for a free product.

We have also introduced an option of a ‘Supporter’ license for anyone who’d like to support the continued development of Agent Ransack / FileLocator Lite. The product still has the same functionality but the support license offers premium technical support and includes the option of a MSI installer, ie instead of using the usual EXE installer, for unattended installs. If you’re interested in a supporter’s license you can pick one up here:

Agent Ransack / FileLocator Lite Registration

Much much more

Since this release has been built on top of the latest FileLocator Pro core search engine there are many small improvements, too many to list. Things like better icon handling so that SolidWorks shell extensions stop causing problems, better PDF searching, hit counts, improved memory management, exporting to Unicode formats, improved CSV exporting, support for UI internationalization, better folder browsing, and much more. Give it a try and I think you’ll agree it’s a nice improvement.

Download Agent Ransack

Seasons greetings

Finally, a big thank you to all the enthusiastic Agent Ransack supporters who have sent us feedback over the last year. Every email is read and goes to forming the direction for future development.

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

34 thoughts on “Agent Ransack 2014

  1. Etienne

    thanks for all your work Dave!
    I’ve been using the program for many years.
    Has there perhaps been added a function that allows the exclusion of a specific folder and it’s sub folders from all searches?
    thanks again!

    1. Dave Vest

      Thanks, that’s really nice to hear. Unfortunately the folder exclusion functionality is still only in the Pro version. I’ll make sure your vote is added to including this feature in the next version.

      1. Ed Tomchin

        Dave Vest, I don’t want nor mean to seem ungrateful because I am the opposite. I am many times over thankful for your great program and for allowing people like myself, who might otherwise not be able to afford it, to have free access to it. I thank you every time I use it.

        Now that I’ve cleansed my soul, I do have a comment/suggestion. I have a database of digital documents I’ve collected over many years that include the secondary support files for each document, especially html documents. I have literally hundreds of millions of files including the support files use two search programs, one that indexes all the files (a weekly chore) and provides very quick search results, and yours.

        The pro/con of the first search program is that in spite of its speed, the results include a lot irrelevant trash from the support/secondary files, which outnumber the actual documents I’d want around 50 to 1. I would like to see that program give me the option Agent Ransack gives me of choosing how many levels of sub-directories I wish to search.

        Speaking of AR, I was wondering/hoping if you were thinking of adding a function to allow pre-indexing a static group of files for quicker searching?

        Have a safe holiday.

        1. Dave Vest

          Thanks for the kind words.

          If you only want to target a certain subset of files then the usual way would be to specify JUST the files you want to search, e.g. set File Name to:

          With AR 2014 you can also specify part of the file name, e.g.

          If you need more info please send an email to Support.

          With regard to indexing we do plan to add similar functionality but it might be premium ($) functionality. Unfortunately we can’t make everything free otherwise they’d be no company and therefore no AR 20XX.

          1. Ed Tomchin

            Dave, re the indexing feature, I’ll look for your announcement on its debut. The more control you can offer in the query the better it would be. For instance, if the index and search function could be queried to produce a file date history from point a to point b where document contained word a within 4 words of b. I believe that’s called a proximity search. Tell me if I’m asking way too much, but I’d be willing to lay out bucks for a program that would do all that.

  2. Martin

    An early Xmas present thanks. Essential for finding stuff on my “distributed” aka chaotic collection of nas and server boxes.
    It has always been on my “must have” install DVD for new machines and rebuilds.

  3. Ed Tomchin

    Yes, thanks for a great present. I’ve been using AR 2010 since 2010 and it’s excellent. I’m looking forward to AR 2014. I’d also like to add my vote to having a folder exclusion function to the free version.

  4. mtantawy

    this is awesome, i love Agent Ransack, it is like the first program i install and always use to search
    Thank you very much for the awesome product, and i’ll sure look into available donating options or the supporter license

  5. Steve

    Thanks for all your efforts on this great tool. I recommend it to everyone and I have bought a Pro license to show my support.

  6. Ted

    If this is as good as Agent Ransack2010, I’ll continue to use this GREAT Tool!
    I also tell all of my friends about this program…Thanks!!

  7. Jim Olah

    I have been using this for several years now and it has helped me find files that I looked for extensively. That has been such a time saver to me. I like that it can search files as well for key words. Thanks so much for this wonderful tool.

  8. Dave Burkhardt

    Just an amateur, but I’d be totally lost, as would many of my files, if I didn’t have my Agent Ransack. Many, many thanks !!!!

  9. Irl

    Dave — I would like to become a supporter/subscriber (I am a Light user) but I want the email address associated with it to be different that my current one. I don’t see a “login” link (or a “user profile” link). Can you point me to those, please? Or should I just purchase the supporter license and register the new email there (I would prefer not to break the link with my current user info.)?

  10. Dan

    Thank you so much Dave! I have been using your program for years. Have you ever thought of working for Microsoft?, They need to incorporate basic, common sense programs like Agent into Windows. Good Luck and Happy 2014!!!!

  11. steve

    Awesome program! Recommend it to a lot of my classmates for code development. Was curious though Is there a way to search for tab characters in a file (and by extension a directory of files)?

  12. loudenvier


    I can’t thank you enough for this magical piece of software. I’ve been using it for so many years… In fact it is the second thing I ALWAYS install on a new PC, just after Firefox! 🙂 So I decided it was time to give back… I came here to find a way to donate some money… But realized the right way is to buy File Locator Pro… It was not so straightforward to realize this, and I didn’t find a “Buy”, or “Pricing” menu item which is common in sites where you sell your software… Nonetheless, I’m going to buy it right now, just stopped by to give this feedback and suggest the new “commercial” menu items 🙂

    Thank you very much again!

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