Plugging in SWISH-E

It’s time to plug in a real search engine. We’ll start with SWISH-E, which is freely available in source form from It’s a Unix-style program that compiles, most comfortably, in a GNU environment. What if you want to use SWISH-E on Windows NT? There are a variety of solutions:

Port SWISH-E to Win32.

If you’re more ambitious than I am, you could convert the program into a Win32 console application.

Build a Win32 version of SWISH-E.

This isn’t the same thing as a native port. Rather, it’s a build that uses a Win32-based GNU environment. Several of these are freely available. I’ve used MingW32 ( successfully with SWISH-E.

Find a SWISH-E Win32 binary.

I found a Win32 SWISH-E binary at I’m sure there are others elsewhere.

Buy a copy of WebSite Pro.

If you’re using this NT-based web server from O’Reilly & Associates, it includes a version of SWISH-E.

Run SWISH-E on Unix.

SWISH-E will compile and run effortlessly on a Unix system. How does that help you use it in an NT environment? Think in terms of clustered components. Let’s say your primary web server is NT-based and that it supports Active-Server-Pages- or Cold-Fusion-based applications. That doesn’t mean your search system has to run on the primary server. It’s delightfully easy to build a web site as a loosely coupled cluster ...

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