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I'm bringing up a SP 2010 standard instance and want to configure it to crawl the old WSS3 site collection until the migration is done. I understand that the proper method is to use the STS3 urls rather than http. If I configure as a source, it works correctly. If I configure sts3:// I get the message:

The start address sts3:// cannot be added when crawling the entire web application. Either select to crawl only the SharePoint site, or provide a hostname only start address to crawl.

which is probably the worst error description I have ever read.

What should my search urls look like?

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This error message means that it doesn't recognise the URI as a web application hostname. You can change the crawl settings to "Only crawl the Site Collection of each start address" and see if that works, but I don't think it will find all your site collections and is probably not what you want. I suggest you use the http: protocol, which it obviously is correctly accepting as the hostname for your WSS web application.

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If you select SharePoint Site as ContentSource, the following protocols are supported:

  • http
  • https
  • sps3
  • sps3s

Checked in the SharePointContentSource class in the Microsoft.Office.Server Assembly

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I never had luck with sts3 early on, with 2010 we just use the http URL of our site for the crawls and have never had issues.

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