SharePoint 2013 search architecture : Overview

SharePoint 2013 search allows users to find relevant information quickly and makes it easy for Search administrators to customize search experience for end users. It is a combination of FAST Search and SharePoint Search components.

Search in SharePoint 2013 improves a lot and comes with a new features. It is re-architected to a single enterprise search platform. It consists of the following areas :

  • Crawl and content processing
  • Index
  • Query processing
  • Search administration
  • Analytics

Search

Fig – Search interaction component

Crawl component
It is responsible for crawling the content sources. It collect crawled properties and metadata from crawled items and delivers it to the content processing component. Crawl component invokes connector to retrieve data from content sources. One or more crawl databases can be used to temporarily store crawled items and to track crawl history.

Content processing component
It processes crawled items and feeds these items to the index component. It performs operations like parsing document and property mapping by transforming crawled items into artifacts that can be included in search index.

Index component
It receives the processed items from the content processing component and writes them to the search index file. It also handles incoming queries, retrieves information from the search index, and sends back the result set to the query processing component. It  is also responsible for moving the indexed content when the topology changes by the Search Administration Component.

Query processing component
It analyzes and processes the query when received from a search front-end. The processed query is then submitted to the Index Component. The Index Component returns a result set based on the processed query back to the Query Processing Component, which in turn processes that result set before sending it back to the search front-end.

Search administration component
It is responsible for the search topology and search provisioning. It coordinates the search components Content Processing, Query, Index and Analytics.

Analytics processing component
In SharePoint 2013, Web Analytics is a part of SharePoint search (In previous version, there was a separate service application for Web Analytics). This component performs search analytics and usage analytics and based on the information from these analyses improves the search relevance. The results of from the analyses are added back to the search index.

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