With 85 sites, the current all-site search is barely better than plain Google.
For example, "sql" returns 60 million hits, "crime" returns 175 million hits, and "sql crime" returns 1,360,000 hits.

Searching for [sql] is treated the exact same way as sql. Tag search does not work. This means that trying to find the best site to ask a question is very difficult, and the system is cluttered with lots of "Where do I ask" questions.

I suppose I could make a Greasemonkey script that could tag-search all 85 sites, plus the 441 Area 51 proposals, but it would be a bear to maintain, and too obscure to help most other users. This really seems like a job for the server.

Please implement a global, tag-search. Note that this could then be easily leveraged for a global "Where should I ask" page (which would ask the user for keywords and then display tag-search results to her).

This is not a duplicate of this, this, or this; because none of those questions indicate any advanced search capability is available (which tests show it is not).

  • I was just trying to figure out where to start with Microsoft Band questions, and would love to have a tag search. (Though, in this case it wouldn't much help since there aren't really a lot of end-user oriented Band questions yet.)
    – Iszi
    Jul 13, 2015 at 18:20
  • Do you know if this might be possible with data.stackexchange.com? Nov 10, 2016 at 9:22
  • You might also want to point to examples where this feature could be useful, e.g. meta.stats.stackexchange.com/q/2794/25741 Nov 10, 2016 at 9:25
  • 1
    @MartinThoma: Yes, SEDE can do this kind of search, but it ain't easy nor pretty. Here's an example of a cross-site SEDE search. Nov 10, 2016 at 16:51

1 Answer 1


It's really a hack hidden away in a completely different feature, but there is a very easy way to do this already. In any case, it may be obscure, but at least we don't have to maintain it. (I would, of course, support making an actual feature that does this, but that doesn't help anyone now.)

If you go to the tag filter page on StackExchange.com, it has a way to search tags across all sites. (Well, it looks like some "special" sites are excluded, such as Stack Apps, but that shouldn't be a problem for the vast majority of people.)

  • Select the "Just questions tagged with the ____ tag" radio button and type in what tag you want to search for.
  • Select the "Just these sites ____" radio button. You don't need to type anything into the box.
  • If you want to search on meta sites, check the "show meta sites" checkbox.
  • Click "show all sites"

It should look something like this:

If you're just looking for a regular, site-wide search, use the search on Stackexchange.com. Tag syntax (i.e. [square-brackets]) is supported there, as are some other SE search operators. Unfortunately, you cannot filter out what sites you don't want to see.

  • 1
    @AwesomePoodles OK, I figured out you can use SE search if you're just looking for a regular search. See update.
    – Laurel
    Jan 30, 2019 at 3:47
  • SE search works now. It certainly didn't when the Q was asked. I can't recall if I retested it when you first posted this answer but clearly this has been [status-completed] sometime in the last 7 years. Jan 30, 2019 at 4:10

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