My computer crashed a couple of weeks back. Since reinstalling the software I have been able to use the search feature. One other newly registered member also said he was able to use it.
I encountered something like this before, where I complained about the accuracy of the technical data on a website and then was unable to see any changes when the owner of the site said the data had ben corrected. But I was able to see the changes when I went in to the site from one of my doctor's computers.
I suspect that what is happening to everyone is that your temporary files page for the search function is locked at the period the function was down. Maybe someone could delete their temporary files and cookies, then try searching and report back?