Australian Government coat of arms

Prime Minister of Australia

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP


Search Help

These tips will get you started with basic query language and acquaint you with the available search options. A few tips to note:

  • spaces between words creates an 'AND' search
  • search for either of 2 terms using an uppercase OR
  • the search engine is not case-sensitive and so will return the same results for a search on Australia as it will for a search on australia
  • this default search only works with full words, not word fragments such as 'instru'.

Document formats

Documents included on this website may be presented in a number of formats. The most commonly accessed documents are provided as standard web pages, which can viewed in a browser or printed and read offline. In addition some documents are also provided in Rich Text Format (RTF) and Portable Document Format (PDF).

RTF documents can be opened in most word processor programs including Microsoft Word, Microsoft WordPad, Corel WordPerfect, AppleWorks and ClarisWorks.

When a large document is presented in RTF and PDF format, it will be presented as a whole, and may also appear in sections for quicker download.

Some documents are presented only in PDF format. If you have trouble accessing one of these documents please contact the Web Administrator through the Site feedback section of the website.

Downloading documents and files

Documents on this website are primarily presented as standard web pages which can be viewed in a browser or printed and read offline. Some information may also be presented in alternative formats such as RTF or PDF. These documents are often required to be downloaded for future reference, storage or transfer. Some transcripts are also available in video and audio formats. These files are able to be downloaded and viewed offline.

To download any of the files to your desktop, C drive, floppy disk or other storage drive, simply click the right-hand mouse button (Ctrl click for Macs) on the document link and select the "save target as" or "save link as" option and then select where you would like to save the file. The downloaded file can then be opened and/or used independently (such as an email attachment) as needed.

RSS feeds

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a way to quickly find out new information on the internet, without having to look through a large range of pages that may contain irrelevant content and images.

A large number of websites now offer RSS feeds which include short details of news and events and a link to the full item on the website. The user can then decide from that information whether they are interested in the full item, and use the link supplied to read more.

In order to receive these short feeds (RSS files) you need to have a simple browser application known as RSS reader, feed or news reader or aggregator. These readers are very simple to install and to use, and there are a wide range of functions and design available on the web.

RSS files are now provided by many Australian Government websites such as the Parliament of Australia, as well as leading news services such as ABC, CNN and AAP.

More than one RSS can be 'aggregated' at once, allowing you to receive short and specific information pushed to your desktop and saving you time skimming other websites. You can simply add and remove feeds as you require, and the latest information will appear on your reader as often as you want the feed refreshed.

How do I get an RSS feed?

To use RSS, you need to install and set-up a simple software program known as a 'reader' or 'aggregator'.

There are a wide range of these applications available and some are free. There is a list of some of the available readers on the DMOZ open directory project website. You will need to choose one that suits you needs and your computer system.

Once you have installed a reader, you are then able to set up how often it refreshes your feeds and how it looks on your screen. The readers usually have a few RSS feeds already attached to them when you install them so you can see how they work. It is then a simple task of removing any you don't want and adding feeds of interest to you.

Most websites that offer RSS or XML feeds offer a URL (web address) which you simply paste into your reader as a new feed. The reader then takes the feed from that location and displays the information available in your desktop as you have specified.

Further assistance

For further assistance contact the Web Administrator through the Site feedback section of the website.