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HouseSpider was developed by Keith L. Jackson - up to and including version 4.0 - and later by Hans Fr. Nordhaug.

HouseSpider is an Java applet that adds indexing and search capability to your web site. It may also run as a stand-alone application. HouseSpider can search by two methods, by spidering through your site or by searching a cached index file. Spider-searching is slow, but very easy to set up and requires no maintenance. Cache-searching requires only a little more attention to set-up and is very fast, sometimes even faster than server-hosted cgi programs. HouseSpider also supports compression (in zip-format) of the index file. HouseSpider has 100% support for i18n (internationalization). It is already translated to several languages. Finally, you can write your website using any charset - HouseSpider can handle it. And best of all - it is free!

HouseSpider handles all html character entities as defined by html 4.0, it allows character entities in the title, href, and meta tags, and it is really fast. Also, format character entities are down-converted (in the index file) to standard conterparts:

Feel free to use these entities in your pages as they will not hinder HouseSpider's search capabilities. For example, placing a soft hyphen (­) in the middle of a word will not make that word unapparent to the search. Also, any character that you can type into the HouseSpider applet, is fair game for the search, even if they are represented in your pages by entities.


The latest version of HouseSpider is 4.7 - released 22nd of May 2005. Changes since version 4.6:

Complete list of changes since version 3.1.


Below you'll find information about:

Project page

Go to the project page at SourceForge for

Search Forums, Mailing List and Trackers

Installation and Usage

Information is available on a per release basis:


From HouseSpider 4.5 all applet message can be translated or modified as you like it. If you dislike the default english strings just make a text file (based on the template) called for example "myen.txt" and load the "language" with

<param name="Lang" value="myen">

You also need to add it to the existing i18n.jar or make a new one containg just your file which is better since it will be a smaller download for people using the applet.

Currently there are translations for 6 languages:

Some of these files are in the archive i18n.jar coming with HouseSpider 4.5 and newer, but also in the translations directory. If you want to translated HouseSpider for your language download the template, follow the instructions and send the file to me.


Known Problems

Last updated: 02.06.2009 by hansfn


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