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Is this possible in principle?

It seems to me that search tools like gnome-search-tool, Catfish and Searchmonkey can search within text files, but not within other more complex documents like pdf or with extensions handled by LibreOffice. Am I missing something here?

Are there programs that could achieve that?

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This answer may help,… – Sabacon Aug 2 '12 at 4:11
Thnx - recoll is very complex. Could you create a simple answer on how to search with recoll for a pdf or odf file based on a word within it, including how to set the directory of the search (if there's such an option) and so on. I mean a description of this kind of limited search, given the fact that the program can do a lot more – cipricus Aug 3 '12 at 11:25
I'd say it is definitely possible in principle, because Google's search results frequently bring up PDF files amongst the traditional HTML pages. They are clearly searching & indexing PDFs. Would uploading your PDFs (and other file type documents) to Google Docs for searching be an option? It's not elegant but you could do this and start using it right now. – Tom Brossman Aug 25 '12 at 21:33
what i meant was searching in tens and hundreds of documents for a certain title, while creating a bibliography. – cipricus Aug 25 '12 at 21:39
up vote 3 down vote accepted

recoll is the answer - suggestion from comment: here

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I don't have a GUI app suggestion, but yes it is possible. A command line tool for this is pdfgrep.

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could you add details? – cipricus Aug 3 '12 at 10:24

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