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In Google Drive, is there a way to search only the contents of files within a particular folder (instead of files within the entire drive, as is the default)?

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It doesn't look that way, no. You can filter by owner, date, sharing status; but not by folder. –  Al E. Feb 4 '13 at 18:01
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Try the in:folder_name operator (e.g. in:folder_name search_term. Found here. –  Alex Feb 4 '13 at 18:02
    
@Alex yes, why not add that as an answer, it's what I would have suggested :) –  OnenOnlyWalter Feb 4 '13 at 18:05
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@Alex Sorry, I just tried what you said, but apparently it doesn't work (no results even when I know the file is there). –  Hydra Feb 5 '13 at 11:00
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What's funny is that if I search and Google Docs says "documents found in Trash" and I click "view" it shows me "<docname> in:Trash" but if I do that search....it returns NO RESULTS. Geesh... Google. WTF? –  Clay Nichols Oct 29 '13 at 18:45

8 Answers 8

I don't think there is such a feature available in Google Drive yet, but you can do a workaround.

If you do not intend to search for files recursively, simply just open the folder you want to search in and use the browser function (Ctrl+F) to search the name of your desired file.

Of course using this method you can't search within the file itself for text matches.

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Yes, unfortunately I want to search content within files, not just filenames. I'm also looking to be able to recursively search within a folder (including subfolders). Thanks for the suggestion, though! –  Jon Schneider Feb 11 '13 at 21:42

If you want to search for text inside the files, you could search your drive for the text, then use (Ctrl+F) to search for the folder name. A little messy, though, and again, not recursive!

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I wrote an app to search by folder (within file contents). It is a bit slow so be patient when it is loading.

https://script.google.com/macros/s/AKfycby6G32K-vKCiLmoKvMtG64cYPHEREEx1PY5IoYrEYaR6WAfbXs/exec

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A time-consuming work around, which isn't so painful if there are just a few folders you want to search, is to share those folders with other Google accounts, and then include to: thatgoogleaccount@example.com in your search.

The script in user165768's answer also works. It asks you to share a scary bunch of permissions, so you may want to look at the code at https://github.com/ljv5555/drive-folder-search/tree/gh-pages/app to reassure yourself, and possibly make your own copy.

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I have had very inconsistent success with:

in:<foldername>

This is somewhat inconsistent though.

This is how Google lets you search your Trash: e.g. before:2013-06-01 in:Trash

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You can take a look to the following tool: www.evenbytes.com/metadrive.html

This tool will help you to search within Google Drive Folders. In addition to that, the tool provides additional features such as filters or custom metadata.

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It is possible to use the API to search all files and filter the results down to the desired folder / subfolders. Here is an open source implementation:

http://ljv5555.github.io/drive-folder-search/app/

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It is here!!! finally! I tested it myself and it works!:

Search in the Docs, Sheets, and Slides home screens

To find the right file quickly in the new Docs, Sheets, and Slides home screens, you can search directly in the search box at the top of the page.

As you type in the search box, you’ll see relevant results from across all of your files show up below your search. When you press Enter, the results that appear on the page will show files only from the specific home screen you’re using. For example, if you search and press Enter in Sheets, only Google Sheets results will show up in your home screen.

Find other file formats

You can quickly find your other files, for example your .doc, .pdf, and .xls files, from the home screens by using the file picker. The file picker allows you to browse your Google Drive files and folders and open up any file you're looking for.

Go to any of the Docs, Sheets, or Slides home screens. Click the File picker icon in the top right. Search within your files and folders until you find the file you’re looking for. Click Select and the file will open in a new tab.

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