Using simple queries with search engines usually results in large numbers of hits. Using advanced query language can significantly narrow the search. A number of useful search operators are described for Microsoft Bing.
Many web users are already familiar with a few of the search operators, such as AND, OR, NOT. These basic Boolean operators are used in many different types of query. However, there are quite a few others and the table below lists them. Some are more useful than others. The table also gives a short description of each. Note that some operators have a colon appended at their ends. The colon must be included.
Table I. Advanced query operators for Microsoft Bing search
||Used to specify a local search that is outside major markets
|AND (all upper case)
||Finds web pages that contain all the terms or phrases in a query. Same as & and &&
||Keeps results focused on sites that have links to the file types that you specify
||Triggers an Instant Answer definition for the specified word
||Limits results to the specified domain
||Finds RSS or Atom feeds pertaining to the term you specify
||Returns only web pages of the specified file type
||Finds web pages that contain both the term or terms for which you are querying and one or more
RSS or Atom feeds
||Constrains the size of returned images. Valid size parameters are "small", "medium" and "large"
||Returns web pages that contain the specified term in the anchor text
||Returns web pages that contain the specified term in the metadata or in the HTML body
||Checks to see if a string is present with one or more properties
||Returns web pages that contain the specified term in the metadata title of the site
||Finds sites that are hosted by a specific IP address. The IP address must be a dotted quad
||Takes a simple list as a
parameter. All the elements in the list are ORed together. See example in section below.
||Returns web pages written in a specific language.
||Any string within parentheses is interpreted literally; that is, with no word-breaking or symbolic
||Returns web pages from a specific country or region
||Allows the filtering of content based on special tags in HTML
||Source filtering used to refine a query for a multimedia site
||Constrains the distance between terms so that documents that contain instances of the specified
terms within ten or fewer words of each other are returned before those that don’t. For closer associations use "near:n" where n is an integer.
||Keeps the query from being altered by the Alteration Service
||Makes sure queries return only terms that are in the query
|NOT (all upper case)
||Excludes web pages that contain the specified term or terms. Same as - .
|OR (all upper case)
||Finds web pages that contain either the term that precedes the operator or the term that follows
the operator. Same as | and ||.
||Returns web pages that belong to the specified site.
||Returns results that indicate whether the specified domain or URL is in the Bing Index
|"your search query"
||Returns results that contain the specified phrase, exactly
Personally, I find most of the Bing operators given in Table I above to be quite specialized and of little general use. I have not had a lot of success with these more specialized ones . But there are some that will make searching easier.
The Boolean operators AND, OR, NOT are always helpful and their use should already be familiar or easily understood from the description in Table I. Table II explains several others that can be helpful in ordinary use.