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Zoom meta names for .desc files and other questions.

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  • Zoom meta names for .desc files and other questions.

    I'm not sure if this will actually work, most of this is still theory as I learn more about Zoom.

    The site I am developing for stores all files as varbinary data in a database and serves the file via an ActionResult ie websiteaddress/download_file?id=202
    If the id contains '.desc', I redirect it to another action that serves up a description file for the particular id.

    In order to index, I was going to supply a webpage with a list of all file links and set the Zoom settings accordingly to look for .desc files.
    The page would look something like this:

    <a href="websiteaddress/download_file?id=202">blah</a>
    <a href="websiteaddress/download_file?id=203">blah</a>
    <a href="websiteaddress/download_file?id=204">blah</a>


    I'm assuming that Zoom takes the file link, then adds .desc to look for the .desc file.
    Is this the correct method to supply .desc files? Will this work?

    Is there documentation with a list of all meta names native to the Zoom application? Is there an example file of what a .desc file would look like?
    Can the .desc also provide categories to the Zoom Indexer?

    Thanks for any support you can offer.

  • #2
    Yes. But what I am not sure about off the top of my head is if .desc is added to the full URL or just the base.

    As your site is already setup, you should be able to test this fairly quick.

    You can use the normal standard HTML meta data in the .desc file (title, meta description, keywords) and you can also use the Zoom specific keywords, ZOOMPAGEBOOST, ZOOMWORDS

    Here is an example .desc file.

    <title>Users Guide for Zoom Search Engine V6 (PDF)</title>
    <meta name="description" content="A comprehensive PDF Users Guide to using the Zoom Search Engine V6 package">
    <meta name="ZOOMPAGEBOOST" content="-1" />


    • #3
      Thank you for the quick answer. Once I test this I'll come back and let you guys know what the answer is.
      Is there a place either in the documentation or on this site that references the entire list of possible Zoom specific keywords?


      • #4
        I've managed to spider a page of links like mentioned in the first post:
        <a href="https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6">blah</a>

        I'm not entirely sure what the next step is to get zoom to request a .desc file from these links is, however.
        What I've tried so far:
        I am using Spider mode for Indexing mode
        "Scan files with no extensions" must be checked in "Scan options" to use anchors. If this is not selected, the log message "Blocked by extensions list" appears.
        Each extension type in "Scan options" has a "Configure" option, with the option to select "Use description {.desc} files". The files to be retrieved are all .pdf extensions, so I added this extension and selected "Use description files".

        When I run the indexer, it retrieves the files just fine. However there are no requests in the logs referring to .desc files, and the desc method is never hit in my application.
        Here is an example of what the log shows for a file:

        [SPIDER] Queued URL: https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6
        12:07:50 - DL Thread #1, got URL (https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6) off queue
        12:07:50 - [DOWNLOAD] Downloading file https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6
        12:07:50 - [PLUGIN] Processing PDF file https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6
        12:07:50 - [INDEXED] Indexing https://localhost:5001/DownloadFile?eventFileId=6

        The only other option I see that references .desc files are in "Spider options", "Use this offline folder for all plugin .desc files" checkbox.

        I have a preference to use the desc method rather using an offline folder. How do I get the Indexer to request the .desc files?


        • #5
          Yes the .desc file option is only for a document file types (PDF, Word, etc..), for HTML files it it assumed that if you want to add meta data you can do it directly in the HTML.

          So the problem in your case is that you have a URL that looks like it is a HTML file and does a redirect (or something sneaky) to stream the PDF file via scripting.

          Are these your PDF files? You might be better off just editing the PDF to add meta data you want.


          • #6
            I experimented with custom metadata on a pdf and it was not picked up with zoom when adding that custom metadata to the zoom configuration.
            eg custom metadata on the pdf would be "/course" - I tried both "/course" and "course" in the zoom custom meta fields, but neither were picked up.
            I also have not been able to get zoom to request a .desc file when it processes the pdf file during indexing.
            I however did have success providing desc files via the local folder method.
            This worked quite well, although it is not ideal and I'd rather it request a desc file when the plugin processes the pdf, but it does not seem to request this. The zoom documentation does not indicate that this desc file request is even possible so maybe this is the only way.

            I also wish there was a way to provide custom metadata in the search results only, instead of both the search results and search form. Some metadata is useful in the search result, however, it is a useless input in the search form and its not easy to hide the accompanying text


            • #7
              For PDF files, only the standard metadata is looked at (Document title, Keywords, File name, etc..).

              If you are wanting to use custom search fields with custom meta data with PDF files, then yes you need to use a .desc file.
              Which should work fine online if you have direct links to the PDF fles. But when all your PDF links are actual links to scripts, it doesn't work, as the indexer doesn't know they are PDF files.


              • #8
                I'm revisiting this again and I figure I would use this thread rather than write a new thread.
                I would like to replace the default Results Layout Date with a meta .desc file date. Is there a way to do this?


                • #9
                  You could try setting a meta last modified date in the .desc file.

                  <meta http-equiv="Last-Modified" content="Sat, 07 Apr 2001 00:58:08 GMT">