Desktop Search

A Desktop Search Application

Pathena is a software application for indexing files and directories on desktops, currently limited to Unix family operating systems. It was designed with technically oriented users in mind, particularly those well acquainted with the concept of a hierarchical file system. Built using a client-server architecture, Pathena consists of a database server plus a GUI client, along with assorted scripts, all of which run on a single desktop or workstation. Search features enable users to find files based on path name or file content. User-defined profiles guide the discovery of relevant items within the user's file system.

The backbone of Pathena is the PostgreSQL database server. Tsearch2, a companion package distributed with PostgreSQL, provides the full-text search engine. At first glance it might seem odd to use an enterprise-grade database server for desktop search. Although there are drawbacks, such as high disk space overhead, there are also compensating advantages. Users running recent Linux distributions, for example, probably have all the required software already installed on their systems.

Bear in mind that Pathena is still a work in progress. Some parts of it work well; others need improvement. Development so far has been Linux-centric (Fedora, in particular). Minor glitches might appear with other Linux/Unix systems. Many users would find the application helpful, though, even at this stage of development.

Pathena is registered on PgFoundry, the PostgreSQL Development Group's site for developing and publishing PostgreSQL-related software. Visit the project page for details.

Release Information

  • Current version: 0.3.4, released 11 November 2005
  • Contact: Ben Di Vito <>
  • Platforms: Linux (tested on Fedora), Unix (untested)
  • Requires: PostgreSQL 7.4 or later, Python 2.2 or later
  • Terms of use: open-source software, free to use and redistribute (BSD-style license)

Comments Welcome

Experience reports from users are encouraged. During this early period, it will be especially helpful to hear about any difficulties that appear to be platform-specific.

  Administrator:   Ben Di Vito [Powered by PostgreSQL] [Python Powered] Powered By GForge Collaborative Development Environment Last Updated:   11 November 2005