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Tracker is a tool designed to extract information and metadata about your personal data so that it can be searched easily and quickly. It can trawl through your hard drive and index existing files and data stores. It is a is a semantic data storage for desktop and mobile devices. Tracker uses W3C standards for RDF ontologies using Nepomuk with SPARQL to query and update the data.

It consists of a common object database that allows entities to have an almost infinte number of properties, metadata (both embedded / harvested as well as user definable), a comprehensive database of keywords/tags and links to other entities.

It provides additional features for file based objects including context linking and audit trails for a file object.

The software has the ability to index, store, harvest metadata, retrieve and search all types of files and other first class objects. Tracker detects file mime types and further enables you to limit searchs to specific types of files (audio, video, text files, etc.).

It is designed and built to run well on lower-memory systems with typically 128MB or 256MB memory. Typical RAM usage is between 4-30 MB.

The screenshot shows Tracker Search Tool in operation, a GTK-based graphical frontend.

 Tracker 1.4.0

Free to download



Jamie McCracken, Laurent Aguerreche, Luca Ferretti, Eugenio, Michael Biebl, and many others


System Requirements
Sqlite 3.2+
libdbus (0.60 +)
dbus-glib bindings (0.60 +)
GLib (2.10)
intltool (>=0.3.5)

gstremer 0.10 + plugins
wv (1.0.2+)
poppler (pdftotext)
GTK and Gnome stack for GUI tools

DocumentationMailing List

Selected Reviews:

Features include:

  • Full Text Search (FTS). Below are the features which are available with FTS (which can be disabled as part of the build):
    • Unaccenting is used to strip characters of their accents to allow comparisons between examples like Idea and Idéa to be as fast as possible
    • Unicode Normalization is used to match examples like Straße and Strasse or the other way round
    • Stemming is used to find more relevant results. For example a search for motorbikes (plural) will also return results relevant to motorbike (singular). This operates on a multi-lingual basis. Stemming is currently experiemental and we're looking to improve this
  • File notification for real time updates
  • Supports both free text search (like Beagle / Google Desktop) as well as structured searches using RDF Query
  • Provides text filters for PDF, MS Office, OpenOffice (all versions), HTML and PS files
  • Responds in real time to filesystem changes, automatically keeping its metadata database up to date
  • Extracts embedded File, Image, Document and Audio type metadata from files
  • Thumbnailing on the fly
  • Uses multilingual word stemmers to help find more relevant results
  • Indexer, a lightweight daemon that extracts information from files (trackerd)
  • Tracker Search Tool, a small GUI to search for indexed data
  • Command line tools for searching, querying the daemon status, and tagging
  • libtracker, a C wrapper around the DBus API
  • Full DBus API for application authors using different toolkits or programming language
  • Implements the freedesktop specification for metadata
  • Supports the WC3's RDF Query syntax for querying metadata

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Last Updated Sunday, June 07 2015 @ 12:38 PM EDT

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