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Internet Subject Directories

Academic & Professional Directories

  • Academic Info - gateway to college and research level Internet resources maintained by former librarian Mike Madin and a volunteer group of subject specialists

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Commercial Directories & Portals

  • About - large collection of topical collections gathered by company-certified subject specialists


  • alba36.com - multilingual directory in 36 major categories of thousands of vortals, i.e., meta sites that are starting points for a topic


  • Aliweb -


  • Alta Vista -  One of my favorites. It's extremely powerful, fast, and detailed. One of its best features is the fact that it searches an entire Web site (and Usenet newsgroups) looking for what you want to find; many other search engines cannot do that, concentrating only on Web site titles. It offers simple and advanced searches, and allows the use of wildcards and Boolean searches. Simply put, Alta Vista is robust!









  • Infoseek - Infoseek is a search engine with a lot to offer. Unlike many competing engines, you can do more than search the Web with Infoseek; you can search Usenet newsgroups, look up email addresses, browse through a company directory, search Web FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions), and more.




  • JoeAnt - guide compiled by volunteers; listings include information about each site including multimedia features, chat, e-commerce, access limitations, etc.


  • JumpCity - collection that offers a signed review of each item and a link to any Usenet newsgroup related to the topic


  • LinkStar -


  • LookSmart - large collection of links to reviewed sites in thousands of categories



  • Lycos - probably the oldest major search engine and has long been viewed as fast and reliable. It offers keyword and subject searching, is customizable in its searching options, and actually offers a rating system (called "Point") for Web sites.



  • NBCi - collection of briefly annotated and recommended sites, with fairly good coverage of academic subject areas; search engine results area also returned [NOTE: NBC has announced it will shut down this site]


  • Netcenter - Netscape's portal site concentrating on the business community, with a directory, search service and (free) members-only services including discussion groups, instant messenger, a member directory and free e-mail






  • Starting Point - designed to make your daily Web experience more productive. Starting Point helps you manage Web resources by combining a powerful, centralized Web searching tool with quality, subject-oriented Web resources you need every day -- all combined in an easy-to-use, comprehensive, and well organized starting point.


  • The Search Beat - large, selective directory organized into numerous subtopics


  •   Top9.com - directory that ranks content based on popularity using a methodology from PC Data Online; shows the top 18 listings in each category every month



  • WebBrain - Java-based visual search engine of the Open Directory Project index; interface allows users to click through an animated display of categories to locate Web sites. Currently in beta, and requires a fast Internet connection.


  • WebCrawler -


  • Web Search - well-organized, annotated collection of Web sites organized by topic and maintained by Chris Sherman of The Mining Co.



  • Yahoo! - is a topical directory, technically not a search engine. This means that, rather than arbitrarily searching the Web for sites, they list sites which have been submitted to them for approval from netizens. Thus, you'll typically find the referencing system reliable for finding high quality sites. As Yahoo takes the form of a hierarchical index, you'll find it fun and easy to "surf" the Net with Yahoo!  Nice portal with one of the largest directories on the Internet but lacks reliable site evaluation, so deficient content is mixed in with the good; not an appropriate site for academic research; offers news, stock quotes, maps, free e-mail and many other services



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Individual Search Engines

  • Albert - demo of a natural language search engine for submitting questions in plain English that retrieves results from AllTheWeb


  • Alexa Web Search  - returns results powered by Google with additional information including traffic ranking, number of links to page, ownership and links to related pages of interest


  • AllTheWeb - returns results quickly from an extremely large database; offers multimedia and FTP searches; also returns categorized topics to further focus a search


  • AltaVista - searches Web sites and Usenet newsgroups with advanced Boolean and field search options. See also:


  • AOL Search - engine that defaults to AND logic and offers an Options template for easy search construction; has an option to view results by popularity; offers a directory based on the Open Directory


  • Ask Jeeves - submit questions in plain English and view suggested relevant sites; also offers the Open Directory ranked in order of popularity


  • Atomica - engine that retrieves results from Web search engines and related information from such deep Web sources as general and specialty dictionaries, encyclopedias, financial databases, news, user links, and more


  • Google - ranks pages by the number of links from pages ranked high by the service, including results from the Open Directory Project. See also:


  • Gripe.com - searchable collection of categorized Usenet newsgroups with quality-sorted results


  • Guidbeam - organizes results into levels of increasingly narrow concept clusters


  • HotBot - the Web's ultimate search engine. It is the biggest -- indexing more than 54 million documents. It is the smartest -- offering a range of easy-to-use filter tools that enable you to get the most relevant results. Offers easy form-based Boolean, field, and media search options; includes its channel content with the results for searches on broad or popular terms; clusters results by presenting one hit per site


  • iLOR - presents results from other search services and offers options to view and manipulate results in various ways. NOTE: options are available when you hover your mouse over each results title


  • Lycos - emphasizes search results from the Open Directory and offers up Web site from the FAST Search index


  • MSN Search - derives results from a variety of sources, including the LookSmart directory, Ask Jeeves and others; applies concept matching to search statements; and offers an advanced search option with form-based field searching similar to HotBot


  • Oingo - "meaning-based" engine that constructs meanings and relationships from your search terms to return results, from which you can choose your desired concept to refine your search; derives results from the Open Directory


  • RLIN AMC database - the RLIN Archival and Manuscripts Control database


  • SearchEdu.com - service that limits results to the .edu, domain; also offers to search well-known dictionaries, encyclopedias, almanacs, etc. See also:


  • SmartBorg - engine that parses your query and recommends a search engine and/or directory to search


  • Subjex - "dialogue-based" engine that offers Web sites in response to a series of questions you can ask to progressively refine your search; currently in beta


  • Thunderstone Website Index - search thousands of sites (vs. Web pages) from a continuously updated database; adds 25,000 sites per week


  • Teoma - returns results in three sections: popularity-ranked Web pages based on the number of same-subject pages that reference them; suggested terms to refine a search; and link collections created by topic experts


  • WISEnut - offers a large database and a companion directory of topics related to a search


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International Search Sites













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Date Modified:
Wednesday, July 24, 2002

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Meta Search Engines

  • C4 - search a large number of search engines and directories and configure useful customization options available with free registration; formerly known as Cyber411


  • Chubba - search the Web, a dictionary/thesaurus and encyclopedia


  • Copernic - client software that searches multiple engines and directories, removes duplicates and dead links, highlights search terms in your results, and offers a variety of search and retrieval options



  • Fossick Meta Search - searches a dynamically changing group of engines based on speed of availability, and ranks results based on search terms, popularity and other measures; offers the option to search sites from individual countries. Offers page translation using Babelfish, the AltaVista translation service.


  • GenieKnows - searches 25+ engines and directories and ranks results based on the number of sources listing a page; chooses sources to search based on consumer input; also offers searches of multimedia types


  • Highway 61 -




  • Infonetware - categorizes search results into component subtopics with options to select multiple topics for a new set of topics and a filtered results list


  • Internet Sleuth -


  • Ithaki - searches engines, directories, and also numerous deep Web sources


  • Ixquick - search engines, directories, news and MP3 files; ranks results based on top ten rankings from the source sites; allows any type of search syntax and will translate and direct your search accordingly


  • Kartoo - categorizes content into relevant concepts and sites and displays results on a graphical map; requires Flash or offers an HTML version


  • Mamma - retrieve results in relevancy ranked order; power search offers a user-friendly template for building a query


  • MetaCrawler - retrieve results in relevancy ranked order; useful power search available with a template of search options


  • METAEUREKA - barebones interface for an engine that sorts results by relevancy and offers a "Site info" link that returns information on the server, date last modified, size, and descriptive information if available


  • Metafind -


  • MetaMission - searches several search services on the Web, and also offers specialty searches of auctions, books, electronics, hardware and software, jobs, multimedia, and Usenet News


  • Metor - searches multiple engines, directories and databases; offers the option to see the size, date and availability of the document, to extract the context of your search terms within the document, and to navigate user-selected results within a frame


  • OneSeek -


  • Pandia Search Central - searches multiple engines and directories and also offers searches of news, books, music, videos and other specialty databases; includes a searchable version of the Open Directory


  • ProFusion - meta engine that allows results to be sorted by relevance, title, URL and source; offers a customizable Advanced Search form for choosing the search services to search; also offers topical searches on the deep Web


  • Query Server - offers queries of the general Web, or health, money or government sites and organizes results by concept, by site, or by both


  • SavvySearch -


  • Search Online - engine that searches Web pages and multiple deep Web sources with options for grouping and sorting results; free registration allows for customization of search and results process


  • SearchTurtle.com - offers navigation of the retrieved Web sites from within the search results window; also offers searches for news and multimedia


  • SurfWax - offers options to see a quick view of sites in the search results list to determine relevancy and choose alternative search terms for a subsequent search from a thesaurus; offers personalization options


  • Verio Metasearch - retrieves the top ten hits from each source engine and directory in combined ranked order


  • Virtual Learning Resources Center - searches several high quality directories; also offers its own directory


  • Vivisimo - searches multiple engines and directories and organizes results into topical categories


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Retrieve Results From Each Site Separately

  • 1Blink - search 11 sources and view the results at the 1Blink site


  • all4one - search 4 search engines and access results at each site


  • Dogpile - Searches
    The Web: Yahoo!, Lycos' A2Z, Excite Guide, Go2.com, WWW Yellow Pages , PlanetSearch, Thunderstone, What U Seek, Magellan, Lycos, WebCrawler, InfoSeek, AltaVista, Excite & HotBot. Usenet: Hotbot News, Reference.com, Dejanews, Altavista and Dejanews' old Database.
    FTP: Filez and FTP Search.(Only the first word in your query will be passed on to FTP Search.)
    News Wires: Yahoo News Headlines, Excite News and Infoseek NewsWires. Search 20+ search engines and retrieve results separately, offering custom search options


  • qbSearch - retrieve results from engines you choose; offers the option to activate a QuickLinks feature that allows you to select links from your results to display the first page of all of them on a single page


  • Researchville - opens multiple browser windows with search results from the originating search service; searchable categories includes news, Web guides, reference, opinion and multimedia


  • Turbo10 - retrieves results from multiple sources (including a few deep Web sources) and offers sorting by speed, relevance and source; also offers concept clusters to organize results into keywords and subtopics


  • Webtaxi - use a helpful template to build search types and access your results separately at each site; click on "Search" button for numerous meta-search options


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Search Engine Collections

  • All-In-One Search Page - compilation of search templates for an extensive range of information retrieval


  • BigBook - a San Francisco-based company offering free access to the 16 million U.S. businesses indexed in their database. Among the really unique features BigBook offers is a personalized address book, detailed maps which allow for zooming capabilities, and -- this is very cool -- 3-D representations of major cities, allowing visitors to explore specific city sections, search individual buildings, generate business listings for specific streets, and even "enjoy" advertisements on circulating blimps.


  • Beaucoup - compilation of 2000+ engines and directories organized by category; also offers a meta search capability


  • Classifieds2000 - offers extensive search capabilities in their database of automotive, computer and general merchandise (stereo/video, furnishings, sporting goods, etc.) classified ads, including prices, models and mileage.


  • Download.com - offers quick and easy access to the top free-to-download software titles available over the Internet. Visit DOWNLOAD.COM to download today's most popular titles -- including must-have utilities, the hottest games, and the latest browsers. The site also features highlights and product descriptions to help you make the right decision about what software to download.


  • EZ-Find at The River - search 10 search engines individually from the same site


  • General Internet Search Programs - compiled by BUBL Link


  • Lookoff - offers a categorized collection of search services on the Web; also allows you to query the collection and retrieve suggested search services to use


  • MetaIQ - multi-purpose site that serves as a meta engine, a directory of searchable databases on the Web, a news source and more


  • SearchBug.com - offers searches organized by topic, and searching of single or multiple search services


  • Search Engine Colossus - directory of hundreds of search tools from more than 200 countries around the world


  • Search Engine Guide - topical collection of 3000+ engines, directories and portals


  • SearchIQ - categorized collection of engines and directories from the SearchIQ search engine informational site


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Specialty Search Engines

Deep Web

  • CompletePlanet - offers searchable access to thousands of databases on the "deep Web" for results that include summaries from the retrieved site


  • Direct Search - large compilation of links to the search interfaces of a wide variety of research resources on the Web
  • The InvisibleWeb - directory of over 10,000 databases, offering the option to search for the database you need, from IntelliSeek


  • Invisible-web.net - searchable directory of quality databases on the Web compiled by Chris Sherman and Gary Price as a companion to their book The Invisible Web: Uncovering Information Sources Search Engines Can't See


  • Lycos Directory: Searchable Databases - large collection of invisible Web databases organized by topic; almost identical to The InvisibleWeb above


  • ProFusion - meta engine that also offers searches of multiple "vertical search sources" on the deep Web organized into topical categories


  • Search.Com - dozens of topic-based databases from CNet


  • Search Engines and News - large collection of topical search engines and newswires maintaned by wwwINTERNETS


  • Subject Directory of Search Engines - topical listing of searchable databases on the Web from the SearchIQ search engine review site


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Domain Names

  • Checkdomain.com - search for the availability of a domain name in nearly every country of the world


  • Clickey - search for words contained in a domain name, or keywords contained in a brief record, with options to limit searches to a country, state and city


  • Namedroppers.com - allows searches for domain names with multiple keywords and the ability to limit to .com, .net, .org and .edu domains; results link to the domain's Web site when available and to the InterNIC Whois record


  • Network Solutions - search the database of registered domain names on the site of Network Solutions, the company that registers many domain names


  • Registry Whois Search - search the database of registered domain names on the site of Network Solutions, the company that registers many domain names


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FTP Search Tools

  • FtpFind - offers searches by keyword, filename, or by themes including Linux, Windows, Sound, Movies and Pictures


  • FTP search - offers a full featured search interface with numerous searching and output parameters


  • Ftpsearchengines.com - "file finding portal" listing FTP sites on the Web


  • Oth Net - searches multiple FTP sites by keyword


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Multimedia & Images

  • AltaVista Photo Finder - searchable collection of multimedia on the Web: search by media type: images, videos or audios


  • The Amazing Picture Machine - searchable collecion of a variety of image types including architecture, animals, maps, artwork, world leaders and more


  • Ditto - offers searches for images by word or phrase


  • FindSounds.com - searchable collection of sounds and sound effects on the Web, with options to hear similar sounds, and to search for sounds by mono/stereo, resolution, sample rate and file size


  • Lycos Multimedia Search - search tool for audio, video and pictures


  • Picsearch - offers image searching by word and phrase; also offers and advanced search for animations/non-animations, color/black & white, and size


  • Singingfish - searches streaming content including music, movies, news, radio, sports, television and finance


  • SpeechBot - experimental search engine of popular U.S. radio shows, offering the option to listen to an audio clip containing your search terms


  • TimePix - commercial site offering free access to more than 22 million photos, prints and illustrations taken from popular Time-Life magazines and the historical Mansell photograph collection; registration required


  • Visoo - offers searches of images by keywords, image filenames, and Optical Character Recognition (OCR) scanned text in images; also searches for people, image type and color/black & white


  • Yahoo! News Image Gallery - presents current news photos and a searchable directory of archived news photos


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New Page Tracking

  • Karnak - searches hundreds of Web sites, stores the results online, and e-mails you notifcation of the results; premium fee-based service tracks additional queries and offers customization options


  • TracerLock - saves your search query and tracks AltaVista for pages matching your search terms; the first ten results are sent to you in an e-mail


  • Webspector - software that tracks changes to a user-defined list of Web pages and highlights areas of the pages that have changed; email alerts can also be sent


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