Finding, sorting, and replacing data > Finding records > Finding text and characters
Finding text and characters
You can search for text in fields of type text, or in calculation fields that return a text result.
Unless you search for phrases or an exact match, the field can contain other values in addition to the one(s) you specify, and the values can be in any order. For example, typing hotel in a field named Accommodation finds records for Hotel, Discount Hotel, and Hotels, Luxury.
To find text and characters:
1. Start a find request.
See Making a find request.
2. Refer to the following table for examples of different ways to search for text.
To find
Type this in the field
Words that start with specific Roman characters (works with fields that use any language except Japanese)
The characters
Chris Smith finds Chris Smith, Smith Chris, Chris Smithson, and Smith Christenson
Words that start with Japanese Hiragana, Katakana, or Kanji characters
The characters between = and *
Japanese text pronounced "Oda" between equals sign and asterisk finds Japanese text pronounced "Oda", Japanese text pronounced "Odayama", and Japanese text pronounced "Odagawa"
A phrase or sequence of characters that match when they are the first characters in a word (match phrase from word start)
The literal text (characters), including spaces and punctuation, between double quotation marks (")
"Marten and Jones Interiors" finds Marten and Jones Interiors but not Jones and Marten Interiors
", Ltd." finds all companies with ", Ltd." in the name, but not those without the comma
"Spring" finds Springville but not ColdSpring Harbor or HotSpring
Words with one or more unknown or variable characters (any one character)
One wildcard character (@) for each unknown character
Gr@y finds Gray and Grey
@on finds Don and Ron but not Bron
Invalid characters in a text field
Invalid characters display as blank characters
Note  To find the ? character, search for "?"
Digits in a text field (any one digit)
A # character for each digit
# finds 3 but not 30
## finds 30 but not 3 or 300
#3 finds 53 and 43 but not 3
Words with zero or more unknown or variable text characters in a row (zero or more characters)
* for all unknown characters
Jo*n finds Jon and John
J*r finds Jr. and Junior
*phan* finds Phan and Stephanie
S* finds Sophie, Steve, and Sven
Operators or other non-alphanumeric characters, such as punctuation or spaces
The literal text (characters), including spaces and punctuation, between double quotation marks (")
"@" finds @ (or an email address, for example)
"," finds records containing a comma
"   " finds three spaces in a row
A character with special meaning, such as the find operators recognized by FileMaker Pro:
@, *, #, ?, !, =, <, >, " (escape next character)
\ followed by the special character
\"Joey\" finds "Joey"
joey\ finds the email address
Words with accented characters
The literal text (characters), including spaces and punctuation, between double quotation marks (")
"òpera" finds òpera but not opera
(òpera without quotation marks finds both òpera and opera)
Partial phrases, a sequence of words or characters (match phrase from anywhere)
Characters, punctuation, and spaces between double quotation marks ("); use * to find this text in the middle of a longer text string
*"son & Phillips" finds
Johnson & Phillips and Paulson & Phillips
Exact matches of the text you specify (match entire field)
== (two equal signs) for a field content match
==John finds John but not John Smith
==John Smith finds John Smith but not Smith, John or John Smithers
Exact matches of whole words you specify (match whole word)
=Market finds Market, Market Services, and Ongoing Market Research but not Marketing or Supermarket
=Chris =Smith finds Chris Smith or Smith Chris but not Chris or Christopher Smithson
Words that contain Japanese Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji characters (Japanese-indexed fields only)
The characters
Japanese text pronounced "Kyoto" finds Japanese text pronounced "Kyoto", Japanese text pronounced "ToKyo-to", and Japanese text pronounced "Kyoto-fu"
Kana characters in a Japanese-indexed field without differentiating between Hiragana/Katakana, Voiced/Semi-Voiced/Unvoiced Kana, Small/Regular Kana, and Kana Voiced/Unvoiced Iteration Marks
~ (tilde) and the character, to do a relaxed search
A tilde character followed by Japanese Hiragana pronounced "ha" finds Japanese Hiragana pronounced "ha", Japanese Hiragana pronounced "ba", Japanese Hiragana pronounced "pa", Japanese Katakana pronounced "ha", Japanese Katakana pronounced "ba", and Japanese Katakana pronounced "pa"
3. When you’ve entered the find criteria that you want, click Perform Find in the status toolbar, or choose Requests menu > Perform Find.
Note  Normally, finds are not case sensitive or width sensitive. For example:
A find for fred finds Fred and FRED.
A find request that includes Japanese half-width characters will match results that contain the equivalent full-width characters.
You can perform case-sensitive and width-sensitive finds on a field by changing the default indexing and sorting language for the field to Unicode. However, this procedure will change the order in which the field sorts. If you do not want the original field to sort in Unicode order, create a calculation field whose formula is simply the field in which you want to perform case-sensitive or width-sensitive finds, and change the default indexing and sorting language of this field to Unicode. Then you can sort one of the fields, and perform find requests on the other. See Defining field indexing options and Defining calculation fields.
Related topics 
Finding duplicate values
Finding ranges of information
Choosing a language for indexing or sorting