SharePoint 2010 will (FINALLY) include the ability to do wildcard searches. This is good news for those of us who aren't sure how a term might have been spelled when a document or page was created. Let's say, for example, that you need to track down a contract your company has with the restaurant Schlotzsky's. (I can never remember how to spell that but they have the BEST sandwiches!!) With wildcard searching, you can search for the first few letters, like "schlo". In SharePoint 2010, you do this by using an asterisk for the wildcard. You type, in the search box, Schlo* and you are returned results that include documents where the name includes "Schlo". Most users don't try wildcard searches but for those that do, this is a very nice addition.
So what about those of us still on SharePoint 2007? MOSS 2007 is, by the way, still one of the best web collaboration and publishing applications out there. And, for organizations that aren't ready or don't have the budget to upgrade quite yet, it's a good friend.
With some customizations and/or a custom web part, you can do wildcard searches. But you can also do a wildcard search with the basic, out-of-the-box functionality. You just need to know the name of the property. The two that are used most often are the name and title of a document – The name is Filename. The title is Title. Easy enough, right?
So here are two examples for what you type into the SharePoint 2007 search box:
That's it. The results will include any items whose filename (or title, depending on which property you use) include "Schlo". If you want to do a wildcard search based on another property, check with your SharePoint Administrator who can provide you with exact property names to use.
SharePoint 2010 has several more search improvements which I'll be blogging about over the next few weeks. Until then, happy searching and Happy New Year!