Comparing Search Features Between Out-of-the-box SharePoint and Community Central for SharePoint 2010

Released last fall in conjunction with the Microsoft SharePoint Conference, Community Central is Bamboo’s latest release in the application space. Among Community Central’s strongest features is its range of search options. With out-of-the-box SharePoint search, you get search results for an entire site collection, but you’re unable to narrow your search to specific lists or sites. In this post, we’ll take a look at how Community Central allows you to perform cross-site searches on the topics, forums, forum sites, and blog sites within your community.

First, you need to make sure that SharePoint Search Services has been started following the steps pictured below:

Again, since the search results returned in SharePoint out-of-the-box apply to the current site collection in its entirety, you’re unable to filter those results based on the special list or site type. For example, you can’t search all topics in all forum sites (but are limited to searching only one site). As well, the search results in SharePoint out-of-the-box can only display the general view, and don’t give you the ability to select a specific view which may provide extra information about the forum topic and blog post:

On the other hand, the Search feature in Community Central is located all site levels within your community: Home site, Forum site, and Blog site.

In the Community Central Home site, there are four options for search:

  • In this community
  • In all forum sites
  • In all blog sites
  • In this site

  • If you select the “In this community” option, this means that you want to search all Blog Sites and all Forum Sites in the Community Central site:

  • If you select the “In all forum sites” option, this means that you want to search all Forum Sites in this Community Central site:

  • If you select the “In all blog sites” option, this means that you want to search for all Blog Sites in this Community Central site:

  • If you select the “In this site” option, this means that you want to search using the SharePoint search feature:


Moreover, when you go to a Forum site, you can search for “Only forum posts” for that specific forum site, as shown below:

In addition, for each forum you can search for only existing topics selecting “In this forum”:

Similar to the Forum site search, you can search for “Only Blog Posts” within a single Blog site:

Using the additional search methods available in Community Central can help you search faster and receive only those results that are most relevant to your search.

If you’d like to give Community Central for SharePoint 2010 a try, please click here and select Add Trial To Cart in the product banner to download a free 30-day fully-functional trial.