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Steve24

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Posts: 2
 #1 
I'm enjoying Houdahspot and love that it shows search results in context. But I wish that it handled wildcards.
I found an old message here that says it offers limited support for "*" but I've found that if you use it, search results don't seem to be highlighted, and in any event, it's not clear to me that wildcards work at all. 

For example, if a file contains a number like this: $21,123, and I enter the search term $2*,***, Houdahspot finds nothing.  (I'm using it to search MS Word files -- docx.)

Can anybody offer any suggestions?

Many thanks,
Steve
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houdah

Moderator
Registered:
Posts: 2,985
 #2 
Hi Steve,

Try the attached search. This should work.

Best,
Pierre Bernard

 
Attached Files
hssear DollarWildcards.hssearch (132.00 KB, 7 views)


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Houdah Software s. à r. l.
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HoudahSpot: Advanced file search utility
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houdah

Moderator
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Posts: 2,985
 #3 
Sorry, I misread your question. I thought you were searching by file name.

There seems to be a problem where the Spotlight engine gets confused by the combination of $, * and comma.

A search for "Text Content" "contains phrase" "$2*" works.
Adding the comma, causes it to fail.

It appears that the problem is at the system level. If that impression stays, I will report a bug to Apple.


Highlight matching in HoudahSpot Text Preview indeed does not currently support wildcards.

Best,
Pierre Bernard

__________________
Houdah Software s. à r. l.
https://www.houdah.com

HoudahGeo: One-stop photo geocoding
HoudahSpot: Advanced file search utility
Tembo: Easy and effective file search
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Steve24

Registered:
Posts: 2
 #4 
Pierre,

Thanks for your help.

What I'm seeing is that if I'm looking for any five-digit number with a comma ($21,123), searching for $2***** produces the same result as looking for $2. Either one will find $21,123 or or $2,123 or $212 -- anything that starts with $2. (I'm searching for 'text content' that 'contains phrase')

Am I doing something wrong?

Steve
0
houdah

Moderator
Registered:
Posts: 2,985
 #5 
Hi Steve,

The '*' matches any number of characters. Zero or many. One * gives you the same results as *****
And these characters can be anything. I.e. text after your 5 digit number

What the Spotlight engine is missing is the concept of a single character wildcard. Typically "?"

Also: HoudahSpot has to add wildcards before and after your entry in order to match text in the middle of your file
Thus you are bound to get false positives. "$2*," will translate to "*$2*,*" and should match any file that contains "$2" and some time later a comma. Why that fails, I can't figure out and have submitted as bug to Apple.

You can try searching by words. That avoid the extra wildcards.
Then Spotlight chunks your text into what it considers words: text separated by spaces, periods, commas, etc.
That is likely to fail over the comma in the middle of your word/number.

For now, I see no good solution.

Best,
Pierre Bernard





__________________
Houdah Software s. à r. l.
https://www.houdah.com

HoudahGeo: One-stop photo geocoding
HoudahSpot: Advanced file search utility
Tembo: Easy and effective file search
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