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Search Text with Wildcards


The following expressions can replace characters or digits in the Find what field of the SQL Server Management Studio Find and Replace dialog box.

To search using wildcards

  1. To enable the use of wildcards in the Find what field during Quick Find, Find in Files, Quick Replace, or Replace in Files operations, select the Use option under Find Options and then choose Wildcards.

  2. The triangular Reference List button next to the Find what field then becomes available. Click this button to display a list of the available wildcards. When you choose any item from the Reference List, it is inserted into the Find what string.

The following table describes the wildcards available in the Reference List.




Any single character


Matches any single character.

Any single digit


Matches any single digit. For example, 7# matches numbers that include 7 followed by another number, such as 71, but not 17.

Characters not in set

[! ]

Matches any one character that is not specified in the set.

One or more characters


Matches any one or more characters. For example, new* matches any text that includes "new", such as newfile.txt.

Set of characters

[ ]

Matches any one of the characters specified in the set.

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