Search Quick Reference

Any of the words
All of the words

Finds a list of words or phrases.

Exact phrase

Finds a single phrase (quotation marks are optional).


Finds a structured group of words or phrases linked by and, or, not, w/, etc.:

Use parentheses when a search includes two or more connectors:   apple and pear or orange juice could mean (apple and pear) or orange, or it could mean apple and (pear or orange)


Finds grammatical variations on endings, like applies, applied, applying in a search for apply.

Fuzzy searching

Finds words even if they are misspelled.  A search for alphabet with a fuzziness of 1 would also find alphaqet.

Phonic searching

Finds words that sound alike, like Smythe in a search for Smith.

Synonym expansion

Finds word synonyms using a comprehensive English language thesaurus (dtSearch Web can also support custom synonym terms).

Special Characters

? matches any single character

appl? matches apply or apple

* matches any number of characters

appl*ion matches application

~~ indicates numeric range

14~~18 looks for 14, 15, 16, 17 or 18

= matches any single digit

p12== matches p1234

Variable term weights

A number after a word assigns a specific positive or negative variable term weight when ranking retrieved documents:   apple:5 salad:-2

Field searching

dtSearch automatically detects fields in supported file types:
  (author contains John Smith) and (subject contains turbine generators)

A query can combine a full-text search with a fielded data search:
   (author contains John Smith) and (turbine w/3 generators)

Field searching in XML

dtSearch field searching supports the hierarchical nature of XML data.

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