Keyword search is easy. Content, maybe not so much. Unless you’re using Dash DDX. Our document management / document archive software makes it simple to search through large (or small) collections of documents looking for something in the body of the document itself. When I say large, I mean large: millions of documents. And rocket-fast too!
This feature is front and center when you search from the DDX Document Viewer’s toolbar, and have the Full Text option selected. It is acts on any searchable PDF stored in the DDX database (subject to your security rules).
We use the same rules imposed by Microsoft SQL Server’s Full Text Search engine because, well, that’s what is used to make the magic happen.
Just type in a full word, and hit search. DDX will do the rest.
However, it’s also easy to type in something that doesn’t work. You might see a message that says “Syntax Error” indicating the error is near some character or string of characters. The message the Viewer displays indicates you’ve entered something that has invalid syntax – from SQL’s perspective.
If this happens, you just need to be a little more precise about how you enter your search criteria. Here are a couple of samples:
Search for the word Bayside – that works fine.
Search for the word Baysi (a partial word) does not find those with the word Bayside in the body of the document. But you CAN search for partial words or phrases if you follow some simple rules…
Partial Words and Phrases
To search for a partial word or a phrase, you must
- Start from the beginning of a word (you can’t start in the middle) . The starting word can be in the middle of a phrase or paragraph in your document. But you cannot start in the middle of a word.
- Enclose the word or phrase in double quotes (“) – this is a must for all phrases, even if the words in your phrase are complete words.
- And (optionally) use the wildcard character – an asterisk ( * ). This should be used at the end of the phrase to indicate you know what comes first, but don’t care about it’s ending.
Now you can search for “Bay*” and find all of those documents that contain words starting with the letters baysi (including Bayside, Bayview, and BayAtTheMoon). Upper or lower case doesn’t matter in this search.
Numbers are treated a little different, in that you should not include comma’s or monetary signs when searching for them – even if comma’s or dollar signs show up on the printed page. Just an idiosyncrasy of SQL. So a sample search for something shows up as $3,925.30 on your document is to search
- For the whole “word” type the number in without commas or monetary signs: 3925.30 …or
- search for the partial “word” – again without commas, but using the wildcard and double quotes like this: “3925*”
Much, much more
There is a ton more info on the internet about using Microsoft SQL Server Full Text search. And we also include a little of that information in the DDX Document Viewer User Guide. To get to that guide, just select the Help menu on your Document Viewer toolbar.