FIND Utility Query for Windows Explorer   
Query is a code that replaces text or is text. 
 Lesson 11
| Directory | Disclaimer |

1. Let's look at some reserve symbols that Microsoft has put aside to make it possible to search more reasonably for a file.  They use the same symbols in their database programs when querying for groups of data.  These are some of the common symbols used as single or multiple wild cards
Character Usage Example
* Matches any number of characters. It can be used as the first or last character in the character string. wh* finds what, white, and why
? Matches any single alphabetic character. B?ll finds ball, bell, and bill
[ ] Matches any single character within the brackets. B[ae]ll finds ball and bell but not bill
Matches any character not in the brackets. b[!ae]ll finds bill and bull but not bell
- Matches any one of a range of characters. You must specify the range in ascending order (A to Z, not Z to A). b[a-c]d finds bad, bbd, and bcd
# Matches any single numeric character.  1#3 finds 103, 113, 123
I recommend just learning how to use the asterisk * wildcard which is quite effective for me.  Insert these characters in the box designated "Named" and then click "Find Now" button 
w* all files and folders that begin with "W"
*.bmp all files that have bmp extension (folders don't have extensions)
*mouse* all files and folders that have "mouse" in their title somewhere
george Windows default finds all files and folders with "george" in the title somewhere
Web*.cdr all files that begin with web and end with .cdr extension
Don't have to worry about being case sensitive.  If you know the short name of the file it will tell you it's path. However, the more you use your computer, the more you will be confused with what you named the file because you've added so many, even duplicates thus begins the detective work and the reason for wildcards in a selective guessing game with yourself of "Can you find Waldo"

"Look in" section is for the drive or section of your computer you would like to search for that missing file that you knew you would never forget what the name was. Click Browse button if you want to restrict your search to certain folders or sections of a drive.

You can open a file from the Find File Utility by selecting, right mouse click which opens a menu, select "Open" and the file will open the file with the computer's registered default program. You can also open by double clicking your selection.

The example shown selected "Splash.gif" then right mouse click, selected open.

Note the short name of the file in the "Name" section. On the right "in Folder" section is the rest of the path or name.

This file was found with "s" combined with the wild card " * "(asterisk), followed by the file extension ".gif".  The result of this query will give you all the .gif files you have that begin with "S".  You can create a shortcut to this file by clicking "Create Shortcut". Dialog box will tell you that you can't but can place the shortcut on the desktop by selecting "YES". Might be an easy way to create your desktop shortcut.

We have seen a basic use of the Find  Utility Query for Windows Explorer and basic reserved characters  to be used in the search for a file. If you know these lessons and understand them, I would consider you Windows literate. Now you just have to fine tune yourself to the programs and how they work.
  Check out the other lessons you may want help with. 

Comments, Good or Bad: 

Sponsored by Anderson Graphic Division. Discount Quality Rubber Stamps
Art Catalog:  Available for All Crafts 

Copyright 1999 Anderson Telekinetic Information.       All Rights Reserved.
Revised: December 18, 2010                 Home