Lycos FTP search

FTP Search was online from 1996 to 1997 as its own application. The FTP search engine was developed as a result of Tor Egge's doctoral thesis at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. From 1997 till to 2001 it was offered by Lycos and from 2001 it was also part of the demonstration search AlltheWeb, but was discontinued there in 2003. The FTP search was then further developed by FAST into an MP3 or multimedia search.

In 2001, FAST FTP Search was one of the world's largest file search engines, which could also be used by other providers. It comprised over 125 million files of all kinds (Linux RPMs, Palm Applications, Images, C Source Files, etc.) from FTP servers. The entire catalog was updated every 12 hours, making it one of the most up-to-date offerings of the time. A variety of search filters made it possible to perform a targeted search.

Language Multilingual

Launched 1999
Closed 2001

Developer Fast Search & Transfer (FAST)

Country of Origin Norway

1999 - 2001 Lycos

Topic FTP search

Region No Limitation

Technical functionalities
Search Interface / Search API

Used SeEn FTP Search / FAST FTP Search

Older Version Internet Archive / WebCite

»... FTP Search, Tor Egge's doctorate thesis at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, which he started in 1994, which in turn resulted in the formation of Fast Search & Transfer (FAST), established on July 16, 1997.« Source

»Features & Benefits

Catalog Coverage. FAST's FTP catalog contains over 125 million files of all types, (Linux RPMs, Palm Applications, Images, C Source Files, etc.) found on FTP servers.

Catalog Freshness. The most dynamic portions of the FTP Search catalog are refreshed every hour, with the entire catalog completely refreshed every 12 hours. This makes the FAST FTP catalog the freshest on the Internet by far.

Catalog Relevancy. FAST's FTP interfacing methods allow users to establish relevance for all user groups well beyond any other file-searching product immediately, while allowing simple searchers to take advantage of further enhancements as they become more familiar with the product over time. Core product relevance is further enhanced by virtue of the following advanced search features
• Multiple, Powerful Search Methods (Substring, Regular Expression, Wildcard/Globbing). Users have access to all levels of searching from the most simple, (i.e. multiple substring search) to the most complex and powerful access methods (i.e. Regular Expression and Wildcard/Glob searches). This allows the user to match the quality of results with his or her personal level of expertise.
• Mirror Clustering. Allows users to conduct extremely efficient wildcard-type searches and view only distinct entries in the catalog. Once the desired wildcard variant is chosen, one click will list all mirrors throughout the world where the desired file is located for maximum download efficiency.
• Case Sensitivity. Enabling specific application area searches (like LaTeX) requires the ability to perform case sensitive, as well as case insensitive queries.
• Domain Filters. Allows users to refine searches to return only files from certain geographic areas and/or servers to minimize download time.
• Date Filters. Allows users to limit searches to only the most recent version of any software package or update release.
• Size Filters. Allows users to refine results to those files most appropriate to various connection speeds, from 9.6Kbps, (i.e. Wireless) through T1 and beyond.

Easy Cross-Integration into other Search products. The FAST FTP Catalog is accessed via FAST's optimized query API, with results being returned in industry-standard XML to allow for ease of incorporation to Cross-Catalog searches, (i.e. Web + FTP with one query).« Source

2000: »Search the world's biggest file download site. With over 100 million files, Lycos FTP Search has your software, mp3s, games, screensavers, pictures, pilotware and more.« Source


Critical points

Features & Functionality

Advanced FTP Search Source


References & further Publications

Wikipedia (EN):
Wikipedia (Others):

Other Sources

FTP search : Version 3.3 URL:
FAST Ftp Search URL:

Created: 2019-10-27