The enhanced freeWAIS distribution
(This software is no longer supported, and most of the links are out of date!)

Allgemeine Informationen



freeWAIS is a text retrieval system based on the vector space model. freeWAIS-sf is an extension of freeWAIS, developed at the computer science department of the University of Dortmund. sf means structured fields and indicates the main improvement of freeWAIS-sf. The extensions include:

  • improved document modeling: support for the logical structure of documents: a document is represented as a set of fields
  • introduction of different index types, e. g. soundex and phonix for personal names or stemming for titles
  • support for Boolean operators in queries
  • search for numeric values with special predicates like less than and greater than.
  • 8 bit clean
  • improved portability
  • countless bug fixes


Year 2000 compliance

FreeWAIS-sf is free software. It has been implemented by some dozen developers. The resulting code is not really what one would call aesthetic. Therefore we cannot give full guarantee that freeWAIS-sf is full year 2000 compliant. However it's really unlikely that you run into such a problem unless...

  • ... you use a version prior to freeWAIS-sf 2.0.41 and use date indexed fields. Within these versions the dates have been organised as YYMMDD. In later revisions this has been changed to YYYYMMDD.
  • ... you depend heavily on what is written in the documentation. The documentation is really out of date, i. e. the change in date format described above has not been documented.

We do not know any other parts in freeWAIS-sf where one could get trouble from the beginning of the next century. In the unlikely case that you run into a problem, feel free to send a patch which fixes the problem.

See also SFgate and y2k.