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Thread: Word's Wildcard Search

  1. #1
    Robko is offline Windows Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    Default Word's Wildcard Search

    I am a crossword addict and am hoping to get some clarification on word 2013 & wildcard usage.

    In previous versions of word i simply accessed the find and replace dialogue box, checked the wildcard (?) checkbox and entered a search string. i recently searched for ?ix, which didnít find any results using this method; but when i did the same search using ^$ix (using the special drop-down box) it found words.

    Can someone clarify why the use wildcards option in the find and replace dialogue box is worthless or included at all, when half the time it doesnít find the word which definitely is somewhere in the document.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    VBwriter is offline New Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2018


    see: ""

  3. #3
    RuskinF is offline Beginner
    Join Date
    May 2020


    In your Word document, press “Ctrl + H” to open the “Find and Replace” dialog box. Click “More” to expand the dialog box and access more options.

    NOTE: If the “Less” button is available where the “More” button should be, you don’t have to do anything. The dialog box is already expanded.
    Select the “Use wildcards” check box so there is a check mark in the box. Notice that the “Use Wildcards” option displays below the “Find what” edit box.

    NOTE: When the “Use wildcards” check box is selected, Word finds only the exact text that you specify. The “Match case” and “Find whole words only” check boxes are unavailable (grayed out) to indicate that these options are automatically turned on and can’t be turned off until the “Use wildcards” option is turned off.
    As an example of finding text using a wildcard, we will search for all occurrences of any text beginning with “t” and ending with “e,” with a variable number of characters in between. To do this, type a “t” in the “Find what” edit box and then click the “Special” button at the bottom of the dialog box. Select “0 or More Characters,” or the “*”, from the popup menu.

    NOTE: If you know the special character you need to enter, you can type it directly into the “Find what” edit box. The “Special” button provides a reference in case you don’t remember the special characters available to you and their meaning.

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