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Search > Find    Ctrl+F

Searches for the specified text.

The Find command invokes a toolbar that appears at the bottom of the Code Editor window:


To search for text in the Code Editor using the toolbar:

  1. In the search field, enter the string you want to locate.
  2. To modify your search, click any of the check boxes that affect the search, as described in the table below.
  3. To begin searching, press one of the following:
    • Enter to search downwards (or click SearchDown.png on the Search bar).
    • Shift+Enter to search upwards (or click SearchUp.png on the Search bar).
    • Ctrl+Enter to search from the beginning of the file (or click RestartFromBeginning.png on the Search bar).

To search directly in the Code Editor:

After you introduce your search criteria in the toolbar and press Enter, the focus changes to the Code Editor:

  • All the matches appear highlighted.
  • To go through the highlighted matches in the Code Editor without using the toolbar, use the following shortcuts:
    • F3 / Ctrl+L to search downwards.
    • Shift+F3 to search upwards.

Highlighting of Strings: The Find command locates and highlights all occurrences of your search string. The first occurrence of the string is highlighted in a different color than the other occurrences of the string. The colors used for highlighting the strings are part of the color schemes used in the IDE, but you can also select different highlight colors.

  • To specify the highlight colors that are used, select both a foreground color (for the characters) and a background color (for the highlight) on the Tools > Options > Editor Options > Color dialog box for the following elements:
    • Search match - the current found search string.
    • Additional search match highlight - all the other found search strings.
  • To disable the highlighting of all search matches, uncheck Show all search matches on the Tools > Options > Editor Options dialog box.

Wrap-Around Search: When the search reaches the end of the file (or the beginning of the file, if you are searching Up), the message Search Match Not Found is displayed.

  • You can choose to restart the search from the other end of the file.
  • You can also click Wrap around without asking to prevent further display of the Search Match Not Found message.
  • To enable or disable the message Search Match Not Found, go to Tools > Options > Editor Options and enable or disable the Auto search wrap around option.

Search Option Checkboxes on the Search bar: Depending on your screen resolution, some of the options (such as Case sensitive, Whole words, and so forth) might appear as a checkbox or, if space is tight, they might be listed in the ">>" popup menu. You can enable and disable any of the options that are displayed in the ">>" popup menu.

Item Description


Enter a search string, or click the associated down-arrow DownArrowFind.png to select a previously entered search string.

Search Down

Searches from the current position to the end of the file. This is the default.

Search Up

Searches from the current position to the beginning of the file.

Restart from beginning

Starts to search downward from the beginning of the file.

Case sensitive

Differentiates uppercase from lowercase when performing a search.

Whole words

Searches for words only. (With this option off, the search string might be found within longer words.)

Regular expression

Recognizes regular expressions in the search string. A list of regular expressions is given (as "special characters") in Regular Expressions.

Search selection

Searches only the highlighted selection in the Code Editor. If no selection has been highlighted, the following error message is displayed: "Tried to search selected text but no text is selected."

Entire scope

Begins the search at the start of the search scope. Typically, the search scope starts at the beginning of the file, with the following exceptions:

  • If you are searching within a selection, then the selection is the search scope, so the search is performed from the beginning of the selection.
  • If you start your search in the upwards direction, then the "beginning" of the scope is the end of the file.

This option is persistent and remains enabled between IDE sessions and between search invocations (until it is disabled here). The RestartFromBeginning.png button also starts the search from the beginning of the file, but the button works only on a per-search basis.

Note that Incremental Search always searches from the cursor position, regardless of the setting for Entire scope.

See Also