There are three types of searches possible in the built-in RR features (Do notice RR Media and other plugins may allow for other types of search but are not covered/listed here):

1-Playlist Search
2-File Search
3-Library Search

Playlist Search

This search is intended to locate songs ON THE LOADED PLAYLIST. Some people just like loading hundreds of songs (or ALL songs) into the playlist at once and then like to search for songs in the playlist.

Searching through the playlist works by looking for any matches of the entered text on the current playlist. This search is executed by the "SEARCHLIST" comand (on the audio PLAYER screen).

On those searches:

-Only items BELOW the currently highlighted song will be searched. This allows you to search "next" results by using the search multiple times. You can use "GOTOFIRST||SEARCHLIST" to always search from the top of the list.
-Only the files currently loaded on the playlist will be searched (your music path and such will NOT be searched in any way -- There's a separate search for this).
-If you have ID3 tag support enabled, it may not find text contained ONLY in the ID3 tags because RR only loads/displays ID3 tags when it needs to display them (for performance reasons). You'll have better chances of finding what you're looking for by entering text you know to be present on file names.

File Search

This search is intended to locate files on your hard drive, based on FILENAME. This is for the people that like loading only files they want to play (onto the playlist).

Searching through files, RR will try and match the entered text with any file names and list the matching results so you can add them to the playlist using the normal select/add functions. This search is executed by the "SEARCHFILES" command (on the audio BROWSER screen).

On those searches:

-Tags are COMPLETELY ignored.
-Only the current folder and its sub-folders will be scanned for files. This allows you to perform quicker and straight to the point file searches by going in to a specific folder and searching from that folder onward.
-Any Links made with BROWSE.RRL will NOT be searched as a prevention. If you wish to search contents of a BROWSE.RRL link: first enter/view the link, then hit the search button to search from that BROWSE.RRL location onward.
-If you have large amounts of folders, it may take a few seconds to scan your folders during the first search, after which the folders list will be cached and the results should show much faster.

Library Search

This search is intended to allow browsing by database catalogged Genres, Artists and Albums. This works using winamp's library database (for your convenience of settings and configuration), allowing you to auto-scan database and configure the locations to be scaned into the database. This search is also available with iPod's Database format, by providing the ippoddrive setting in RR.INI and having the iPod plugged in and available as a disk drive (RR will only READ from the iPod -- iTunes will still be your file/database manager).

This search works in two ways:

1-Once the library database is in place, Road Runner will find it and list of entries on top of the Audio Browser's main path like: "-- Artist --", "-- Album --" and "-- Genre --". You can browse those much like folders on your hard drive and once you locate the artists, genres, albums or songs you wish to add to the playlist, you can then use the normal add/select functions to load them into the playlist.

2-You can select one of the "-- xxxxx --" entries and hit the search button, which then allows you to search through your DATABASE of songs. This search INCLUDES BOTH FILENAMES AND ANY TAGS for the catalogged songs. It is also possible to browse into a Genre, Artist, etc and then search FROM that position onward (for more specific searches). Once the results are displayed, you can use the normal add/select functions to load them into the playlist.

On those searches:

-The time needed to search your database is directly proportional to the amout of songs you have catalogged.
-The results will only be as up to date as your database. Auto-scanning the database when winamp starts may be a good option if you don't want to sync it manually. You can also set it to auto scan the database every so often. Those are all WINAMP settings.
-The Library search will display information as accurate as your database of songs is organized. Misspellings and wrong information will likely create separate Artists/Genres/Albums -- this is handled by winamp, so the only way to prevent this issue is to organize your tags correctly.