Search Issues with SharePoint 2010
I was recently asked to take a look a SharePoint 2010 UAT server that was showing some very odd search behaviour. The rest of SharePoint was working fine but search results were only bringing back web pages, no other content was appearing in the search results.
We tried the normal trouble shooting steps such as clearing the config cache and resetting the search indexes but nothing seemed to help, we checked the crawl, event and ULS logs but nothing seemed to point to an problem.
We finally resorted to creating a new search application and adding to the default group. After running a full crawl we had a full set of results back as expected, the only step left was to move the existing crawl rules from the old search application to the new one.
After moving the crawl rules across from the original search application to the the new one the same result issues appeared, so it was obvious that one of the 10+ crawl rules in operation was causing the issue, we removed the rules one at time and reran a full crawl each time to check the results, we finally found the offending rule (below) with a URL exclusion of ‘http://*/forms’ , this seemed to have the effect of stopping the crawler component going into the hidden forms folder and crawling content via that route.