How to do Advanced Files Searches in Windows 10/11

Windows 10 and 11 has several hidden commands to do advanced file searching.

This guide shows how to use search commands and modifiers to refine your file searches.

Search Commands

Search commands enable you to specify and refine file characteristics, dramatically enhancing the accuracy and relevance of your search results.

Command Description Practical Example
type: Searches for a specific file type
type:pdf – Finds all PDF files
date: Searches for files by creation date
date:2020 – Files created in 2020
datemodified: Searches by last modification date
datemodified:yesterday – Files modified yesterday
size: Finds files by size
size:>10MB – Files larger than 10MB

Search Modifiers

Search modifiers allow you to control how multiple search commands work together – giving you much better control of the search results.

The modifier commands include:

Command Description Practical Example
AND Combines two search criteria type:pdf AND date:2020
OR Searches for either criteria type:docx OR type:xlsx
RANGE Specifies a range of values date:01/01/2021 .. 31/12/2021
NOT Excludes files with certain criteria NOT type:pdf


Example: Using Search Commands and Modifiers Together

The following example shows how to find

  • all Word documents
  • created in March 2022
  • but not modified since then.

type:docx AND date:March 2022 NOT datemodified:March 2022