Recoll is a full-text search tool for Unix and Linux desktops.

Recoll finds keywords inside documents as well as file names.

The current Recoll version is 1.20.3 (Release notes, known bugs, Release history).

Recoll is based on the very strong Xapian search engine library, for which it provides a powerful text extraction layer and a complete, yet easy to use, Qt graphical interface.

Recoll will index an MS-Word document stored as an attachment to an e-mail message inside a Thunderbird folder archived in a Zip file (and more...). It will also help you search for it with a friendly and powerful interface, and let you open a copy of a PDF at the right page with two clicks. There is little that will remain hidden on your disk.

Recoll has extensive documentation. If you run into a problem, or want to propose improvements, you are welcome to use the mailing list or problem tracker.

Recoll user ? Maybe there are still a few useful search tricks that you don't know about. A quick look at the search tips might prove useful ! Also the Faqs and Howtos on, and some contributed result list formats.


Recoll 1.20.3 released. This fixes real time indexing of the web history (when using the Firefox plugin).
Unrtf 21.8 has been released. This fixes many issues in unrtf, some with possible security implications. You really want to use this version.
Recoll 1.20.1 is out and replaces 1.19 as the main version. I have been using 1.20 for months (along with a number of fearless builders-from-source), and it's as stable as 1.19, with nice small new features. Packages will follow shortly. It is recommended (but not strictly required, see the notes) to run an index reset when upgrading.
The aspell command used for orthographic suggestions is broken on Debian Jessie (because of an aspell packaging issue), and this will not be fixed for the Debian release. See the simple workaround here.
If you are still running anything older than 1.19.14p2, YOU SHOULD UPGRADE. In particular, this index corruption issue leading to repeated reindexing of documents, and possibly query problems too, can be pretty ennoying.
GOTO download and install 1.19.14p2 or 1.20. Reset your index after upgrading (rm -rf ~/.recoll/xapiandb).
A nice new application to complement Recoll: recollfs implements a Fuse filesystem where Recoll queries are represented as directories, the contents of which are links to the result documents.
Recoll version 1.19.14p2 fixes more resource management issues in the Python module (only the Python package needs upgrading for this), and the processing of Bengali characters (no more diacritics stripping).
An updated filter for Open/LibreOffice documents. The previous version merged words which were tab-separated in the input.
The source tarball for version 1.20.0 has been released. This version has a number of improvements over 1.19, but also some incompatibilities. The first minor releases for 1.20 may contain some functional changes in addition to bug fixes, so they may be slightly less stable than 1.19, and 1.19 packages remain the "safe Recoll" for now. Still, if you build from source, there are a few nice things in 1.20...
Version 1.19.14 is out and fixes a handful of minor-to-ennoying indexing glitches (see the Release notes).
Version 1.19.13 is out and hopefully fixes the remaining (rare) crashes of multithreaded indexing.
I have separated the code for the Recoll Unity Scope from the main body of code, in hope that it may interest someone to work on it. It's Python and simple, mostly depending on the Unity API. The Ubuntu Unity API is apparently going to change *again* for the next version, and I think I've seen enough of it.
1.19.12 is out. It's mostly identical to 1.19.11 apart from a new parameter to change the max size of stored attributes. No need to update in general.
I hear from time to time about recollindex crashes. These appear to be quite rare, but they do happen, and I think that they are linked to a yet unfound bug in multithread indexing. If you experience such crashes or stalls, you can disable multithreading by adding the following to your recoll.conf:
thrQSizes = -1 -1 -1
While working on a Recoll-Mutt interface I discovered incidentally that the Recoll Webui Web interface works quite well with the links web browser inside a terminal window. This appears to be an interesting solution for people looking for a search interface usable in a non-GUI environment.
A new filter for PowerPoint files. The previous one was based on the ancient catppt from the catdoc utilities and usually extracted nothing from more recent PowerPoint files (this is about .ppt: .pptx is handled by a native Recoll filter).
Sometimes things just work...
Thanks to some of its users, Recoll now has filters to index and retrieve Lotus Notes messages (some implementation notes from an early user), and there is also now a Web browser interface for querying your Recoll indexes.
A problem with a simple workaround has caused several reported recollindex crashes recently (for 1.17). If you store and index Mozilla/Thunderbird email out of the standard location (~/.thunderbird), you should add the following at the end of your configuration file (e.g.: ~/.recoll/recoll.conf):

              mhmboxquirks = tbird
Adjust the path to your local value of course... Without this hint, recollindex has trouble finding the message delimiters inside the folder files, and will possibly use all the computer's memory and crash. Apart from crashes, which only occur for very big folders, this also causes incorrect mail indexing.
A new user-contributed script for those who use real-time indexing on laptops: stop or start indexing according to AC power status. See the details on the Wiki.
We now have a Chinese user manual: Recoll现在有中文手册咯: Recoll中文手册,HTML


Recoll borrows a lot of code from other packages, and welcomes code and ideas from contributors, see some of the Credits.

On the side

We rent a big country house in the Aude area, in the south of France (see map on the site). If you are looking for a wonderful country place with a pool to spend holidays with a big bunch of family and/or friends in a nice historical but very quiet area, this may be it.