Find a text string in any column in a database.

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    Comments posted to this topic are about the item Find a text string in any column in a database.

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • toniupstny

    Hall of Fame

    Points: 3986

    Nice script.

    A couple of questions for you:

    - Shouldn't there be a set of [ ] around the variables in case they contain special characters like blanks or SQL keywords?

    - How can you handle special characters in the LIKE comparison if a string you would search for has a %, _, [ ], [^ ] or quotes?

    Toni

  • Tim Wehr-392184

    Valued Member

    Points: 58

    toniupstny (2/8/2008)


    Nice script.

    A couple of questions for you:

    - Shouldn't there be a set of [ ] around the variables in case they contain special characters like blanks or SQL keywords?

    - How can you handle special characters in the LIKE comparison if a string you would search for has a %, _, [ ], [^ ] or quotes?

    I agree. It failed immediately for me for a column named "Group".

    SET @Sql = 'SELECT @Row_Count = COUNT(*) '+

    ' FROM ' + @Table_Name + ' (NOLOCK) WHERE [' + @Column_Name + '] LIKE ''%' + @Search_For + '%'''

    Adding the brackets prevents the ambiguity of the word.

    Given that, I see this as a useful time-saver when a word or phrase may have been used in numerous places.

    Thanks!

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    Fair point. I'll have to make the change. The times that I used it I wasn't looking for anything with special characters or keywords.

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    toniupstny (2/8/2008)


    Nice script.

    A couple of questions for you:

    - Shouldn't there be a set of [ ] around the variables in case they contain special characters like blanks or SQL keywords?

    - How can you handle special characters in the LIKE comparison if a string you would search for has a %, _, [ ], [^ ] or quotes?

    Toni

    I've now added the []'s around the table_name and column_name. I'm not sure when the update will be posted but its a fairly simple change.

    Change this line

    ' FROM ' + @Table_Name + ' (NOLOCK) WHERE ' + @Column_Name + ' LIKE ''%' + @Search_For + '%'''

    To this line

    ' FROM [' + @Table_Name + '] (NOLOCK) WHERE [' + @Column_Name + '] LIKE ''%' + @Search_For + '%'''

    As far as pattern searching goes if you want to search on a pattern matching character put it in []'s. So for example if you want to search for the literal string 'test%' you would put it as 'test[%]'.

    I thought about putting it in code but then you couldn't add extra patterns. For example as it stands you can search on the word 'test' with a single digit number after it by making the search string 'test[0-9]'

    Kenneth

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • Philip Davis

    SSC Veteran

    Points: 277

    I admit my SQL knowledge is extremely limited, but am I missing something very basic here? All I get is an Error 208 - Invalid Object Name INFORMATION_SCHEMA.Tables. It would appear that these views only exist in and relate to the master database on our system. All of our other databases, setup by applications such as a Sage ERP system, Backup Exec, etc., have no such views.

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    They are system views. They do only exist in Master but everyone should have access to them and they can be used from any database. Just like the system stored procedures. I'm honestly not sure why you can't use them normally. If you want I can re-write it to work on the base system tables.

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • Philip Davis

    SSC Veteran

    Points: 277

    Actually the answer was quite simple: quite why I am not sure, but on our system all these objects are defined with upper case names and have to be referenced as such, e.g. "INNER JOIN INFORMATION_SCHEMA.TABLES Tables ON Columns.TABLE_NAME = Tables.TABLE_NAME". Many Thanks.

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    Actually I'll bet you have your default collation set to be case sensative. On all of the systems I have run it on the server has been case in-sesative so I didn't have any problems.

    Hope you find the script helpful 🙂

    Kenneth

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • punkcoi

    Newbie

    Points: 9

    How do you see the results?. When I execute the script I get a bunch of '(1 row(s) affected'. Thanks for your assistance.

  • Kenneth.Fisher

    SSCoach

    Points: 19617

    If you are using "results to text" the output will be between the 3rd and 4th "(1 row(s) affected)" .

    I'm adding a SET NOCOUNT ON to the top of the script in order to turn off the extra output.

    You probably arn't getting any results. If you switch to "results to grid" you will get your results seperate from the text output.

    Kenneth

    Kenneth FisherI was once offered a wizards hat but it got in the way of my dunce cap.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------For better, quicker answers on T-SQL questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/Best+Practices/61537/[/url]For better answers on performance questions, click on the following... http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQLServerCentral/66909/[/url]Link to my Blog Post --> www.SQLStudies.com[/url]

  • SQL Surfer '66

    SSCertifiable

    Points: 5152

    Thank you. Very useful and simple.

  • akljfhnlaflkj

    SSC Guru

    Points: 76202

    Thanks for the script.

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