I have a set of documents that must reside on a file share, but I need them to be indexed by SharePoint 2010 search (FAST), and I also need to assign metadata to the documents. If there were no requirement to keep these files on the share, I would store them in a document library, and then I could index them according to their content and also according to metadata that I manually apply through a managed metadata column on the library. But if the files are in a federated search location, and not in a document library, is there any way to store custom metadata about them?
In other words, let's say I want to be able to keep track of whether a particular file is a financial report or other report. If they were in a document library I could add a "Report Type" managed metadata column and tag the files appropriately. Then I could refine on those tags when I search against those files. Is there any way to achieve the same metadata/refining ability if the files are stored in a federated location?