Home > Administration > Disable Nickname Search in SharePoint 2010 Enterprise Search

Disable Nickname Search in SharePoint 2010 Enterprise Search

We are currently upgrading our 2007 environment to 2010. During a testing, customer has found wired search result for people search (It is actually phonetic & nickname search feature), adding fuel to the problem sorting was not working as expected (because additional results by phonetic & nickname features).

After some investigation and a nice article ( http://www.kowalski.ms/2010/07/09/sharepoint-server-2010-phonetic-and-nickname-search/ ) we know now two features nickname & phonetic search features in SharePoint 2010. Now we know what is causing this behavior and we don’t want that feature and we could not find any settings. Though we have found indirect ways to make these features stop working. Though i do not recommend, still for your knowledge 🙂

-> Clear the languageresources.txt and restart search service, phonetic search will stop working.

-> Now clear all the nicknames through the command remove-spenterprisesearchlanguageresourcephrase. There could be thousands of entries to be removed. Which again i dont suggest.

Now things are not getting easy, we turned up to MS Support, they came up with a solution to be tried

-> Export the People Core Results WebPart. Edit the webpart file and modify the properties EnablePhonetic & Nickname to false.

But when you make this change and upload the webpart these values automatically change to true. Surprise!!!. Later came to know that those properties are not configurable properties and finally getting towards recreating entire webpart through object model and peoplecoreresults webpart class is sealed.  This is not the solution we are expecting as it is getting more tougher.

So, we turned our direction atleast to somehow disable nickname search as it is making more problem. And here is the most important clue , there are no nicknames mapped for the language En-GB. And by change the user’s language in browse to En-GB we can overcome the nickname search. But making this change in a global organization is not so simple. And here is the very simple solution for it.


Export people core result webpart. Change the property ‘QerysideLanguage’ to 2057.

This is hack done after seeing the peoplecoreresults webpart through reflector. As it checks for this property if it is blank then it takes the browser language.

What we have is not actually disabling nickname search, but a work around which makes it not to work. 🙂 Hope this helps some one.

[Update 1] –  If you edit the people core results webpart, under Result Query Options -> Query Language, you can set the language from the UI. This webpart on a upgrade enterprise portal site will not have this property visible in UI.

  1. December 7, 2010 at 2:31 am

    Thanks Satheesh for writing this article, We struggled a lot for this issue and at last we have changed the QuerysideLanguage to 2057 and it disabled the nickname and phonetic search.

  2. December 9, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    After disabling the nickname search did you verified if the sort by social distance is working or not?


    • December 10, 2010 at 11:30 am

      Yes.. It is working and we have moved to production. There seems to be strange behavior in sorting, we have to do full crawl on people search atleast 3 times, and i dont have explanation why.

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