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Depeche View
Source Research
First Steps

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Advanced Search In Many Text Files:

How to use the path selector and keywords AND, OR and NOT within the free text search tool Depeche View for Windows and Linux/Mac OS X (WINE).

So far we learned that typing or clicking on "hello" searches this word instantly, and EVERYWHERE. But what if we do NOT want to search everywhere, but only in a specific file?

using the path mask

Below the "find:" mask at the left top, you see the "path:" mask.


By default, whatever you type goes into the FIND mask. Concentrate on it, and spot the orange cursor within.

Now press the TAB key. Voila - the cursor is now in the PATH mask.

Whatever you type NOW changes that path mask, for example, type "help" and you select all files having "help" in their name. The path mask is always case-insensitive, so "help" will also find files having "Help" in their name.

Now press TAB again - the cursor is back in the FIND mask.

Whatever you type NOW is searched ONLY within files having "help" in their filename. Or let's say, the search scope is reduced to that files.

clearing the path mask

Enough? Want unlimited search over everything again?

To achieve this, you may

- press TAB again, then INSERT to clear the PATH mask, and then TAB again to go back to the FIND mask.

- OR: click on the "clear" button in the right bottom (this button may be visible only in full screen mode)

- OR: press CTRL+M.

And why CTRL+M? Because it's next to CTRL+N like narrow. We'll come to that later on.

combined search expressions

Imagine you want to find all text lines containing the words

"foo" OR "bar"

then what to do? Simple, simple: type

foo OR bar

into the FIND mask. Note that you must type exactly " OR ", that is BLANK, BIG O, BIG R, BLANK. A lowercase " or " will be treated as normal text.

logical operators for the search text

And where is OR, there is AND, and ... one example: If you type

LSTART candy AND bar*banana NOT foobar

you are searching lines

- starting with "candy" - and having "bar" and "banana" in their text - but excluding lines containing "foobar"

NOTE that the wildcard "*" is basically the same as AND.

The full list of supported operators:

   AND            find lines with both words
   *              same as AND, only shorter
   OR             find lines having one word or the other
   NOT            exclude lines having the word
   TAB            find TAB characters within text

Depeche View Pro also supports:

   LSTART or LS   find only lines starting with that word
   LEND           find only lines ending with that word
                  (you have to add one blank after the word)
   WORD           find full words only, made from A-Z 0-9 _
   COLn           search only in TAB separated data column n

More examples:

"class *bar* obj OR warn NOT goo"

finds lines containing "class FooBar: public Obj" or "warning" but not "CGooBar".

"LS class OR LEND ;"

finds lines beginning with class or ending with ;

"foo TAB bar"

finds "foo bar" with a single TAB character inbetween.

Type just "TAB" to find the word "TAB", but type "TAB " (with a blank) to find all TAB characters.

escaping search operators

To find the * character itself, type **, e.g. "/** foo" actually finds "/* foo". Alternatively, you may switch off wildcard detection with the noops button. If you need to find "foo *bar" with any chars allowed inbetween, use "foo AND **bar".

If you really need to search the literal string "foo AND bar" in case sensitive mode, type "foo \AND bar" instead.

disabling the search word sequence checking

If you search "foo*bar*banana", you will only find lines where

- "bar" appears AFTER "foo" - "banana" appears AFTER "bar"

Now, if you want to find lines having any combination of those words, no matter in what sequence, click on the "noseq" button at the right bottom or press SHIFT+F4. (This button appears in fullscreen mode, as soon as there is a search phrase containing * or AND).

logical operators for the path

Just as in the FIND mask, you can write the PATH mask like:

foosys OR candy OR .cpp NOT .bak

which selects all files

- having foosys in their name - OR having candy in their name - OR having .cpp in their name - however EXCLUDING all files having .bak in their name

one click search

You know that SHIFT+CLICK on a word searches that word. But it can be done even easier... by activating the "1click" search mode:

- click on "mode" then "one click search".

- now, a simple click on a word instantly runs a search, no SHIFT key required.

- a phrase search is nearly as simple: click on the first word, keep button pressed, then move the mouse to the last word.

- of course, RBUTTON clicks do all the same, only in a NEARBY view.

narrowing the path mask

If you are standing in a file


and you want to search words just and only in that "howto.txt" file, but not in all other "howto.txt" somewhere in other directories:

- click on the "local" button

- OR: press CONTROL+N like "narrow to this single file"

and the full path of the current file is copied into the "path:" mask.

reducing the path mask by a directory

Let's repeat the above example. Your path mask contains:


and now you want to search in all files of the directory



- click on the "pathup" button

- OR: press CONTROL+U like "up in the directory tree"

Of course, repeated CTRL+U will step up even further.

Next chapter: Filtered Views.

Depeche View is a high speed text search tool for Windows and Linux (WINE).
Download the free Lite Edition here, or the 30 days Pro Demo here. Depeche View Lite requires no installation. Just run the tool, then load and search all text files of a folder instantly in one window.

snapshot with 8254 files loaded. the word "interface" was found 5690 times.

Download the free Depeche View Lite Text Search Tool