Looking for a Download Search Engine? General Search Buzz

By | February 7, 2010

Have you ever used a file downloading site? I have been on and off a downloader, and I know the advantages of BitTorrents for large files like disk images of the latest Ubuntu Release or even copies of OpenOffice’s software (which runs at nearly 200mb these days!), and with the speed of the updates seemingly getting faster, better and more reliable access to the source files is becoming a necessity. I just installed version 3.0.0 a couple of months ago, and we’re already at version 3.2.0!

General Search: Download Search Engine

Enter a file search engine service that allows users to search for the latest downloads across several networks in a very simple (to the user, that is) interface. Take a look.

General Search

Just type the name of the file you are looking for to do a file search, and suggestions appear as you type. You can see from the screenshot how that happens.

General Search File Search Results

In the results page, the files available are listed, though it’s not quite clear what the reason for the order is. But you can see there are many files for this program. Also, you will note that the results span several download sites, as well.

The initial pages, the query entry and the results pages all loaded promptly. image of file page Clicking on individual file names also produced a separate page with more details about the file, several options for leaving feedback including a comments area, a thumbs up/down tag, and the download links.

Filters, Clicking, Viruses: Three Suggestions.

1. When I was browsing the site, I noted several recent file titles that were very suggestive, and would warrant a separate area for ‘adult’ materials. A simple filter would work well to remove such titles, and could be an additional revenue stream for those searching for ‘adult’ stuff, etc. That would be a quick way to adopt the Freemium model.

2. Each search page that is clicked produces a basic information page, and related files as well. Always useful. But there’s a lot of clicking and typing to get to your destination file: type url and hit enter. Wait. Enter search term and hit enter. Wait. Click on Filename. Wait. Click on Download. Go to destination site. Sign in. Click. Finally you can download. Free users have to wait a longer time.

3. It would be nice to see some way of knowing that the target files aren’t virus/spyware/nasty-infected before downloading them. This feature would obviously depend on a number of factors, but it would hinder my greater use of a site like this. Of course, I’m not a typical user of download sites, by any means.


…, I found the site design simple and responsive. For less initiated readers, the file sharing search worked well and provided a great way to search different download platforms. It was a bit clicky to get to the files, but perhaps regular downloads have found ways around that. There are definitely ways for General Search to add revenue streams and a lot of benefits for legitimate users, too. Have you ever used a download site?

Share your thoughts on download sites, and let me know what you think.