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WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

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Alexandrite

WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

We have an interesting case where we perform 2 different attribute searches looking for CAD objects but the wildcard search shows less results than the non-wildcard search!

For example if we search by our ECN attribute:

ECN Attribute Search Number results Type  of results
0046945 2 asm and dwg
*46945 1 asm only
*46945* 2 asm and dwg
46945* 0 none, as expected

Notes about the above tests:

  • 0046945 is an exact search of the entire attribute field
  • All results were performed by adding/removing text instead of copying and pasting the above.
  • System is set to Simple Search and NOT Advanced (Although I think that is only applicable to the index search)

Things I tried:

  • My first guess was that there was an empty space somewhere in the file name but the above search results exclude that possibility (viz. the exact text 0046945 works. However I did export to notepad++ as csv to look at the raw text and saw no extra characters in that field that differed between the dwg and asm. 
  • The search view is also identical, so it doesn't appear to be filtering out a file type. 
  • I also could not find anything related in the search user preferences.

 

My questions

  1. Does anyone know why searching with a star at the beginning of an attribute requires a star at the end to get all the results, even though there is no difference in the attribute text saved with the cad files?  Also why the asm comes up but not the .drw?
  2. Do you know how to fix this?

 

Thanks, Lawrence

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Hi Lawrence,

1/ with no asterisks, there is an implied trailing asterisk

2/ with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk

3/ both asterisks supplied

4/ the leading 00 is needed, as understood

The rules on implied asterisks are documented by PTC but I don't have a link handy for you.

The results you are seeing suggest that the DWG object's attribute has a trailing space or tab, but that is just a guess.

HTH -- Rick

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19 REPLIES 19
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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

What does the detail information page show for that object in Windchill?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Yes, detail pages show the identical attribute value

  • asm
    • lscheeler_0-1585577224554.png

       

  • .drw
    • lscheeler_1-1585577241646.png

 

This is very bizarre. 

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

And here are screenshots of the 2 searches:

  • Complete attribute (no wildcard stars):
    • lscheeler_0-1585578302624.png
  • Partial attribute with wildcard star replacing missing text:
    • lscheeler_1-1585578350608.png

 

Again, between these 2 searches all I did was delete the 2 zeros and replace with a star, then made sure both searches used the same view (latest in this case...although I tried various views to make sure no filter buried inside one of the view's criteria themselves).

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Maybe try removing the Revision and Iteration from the search? Those fields are very poorly handled by Windchill search and can lead to weird search results:

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Thanks for the tip.  It looks like in this case it was tied to WC not showing if there is a trailing space...even when there is one.

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Hi Lawrence,

1/ with no asterisks, there is an implied trailing asterisk

2/ with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk

3/ both asterisks supplied

4/ the leading 00 is needed, as understood

The rules on implied asterisks are documented by PTC but I don't have a link handy for you.

The results you are seeing suggest that the DWG object's attribute has a trailing space or tab, but that is just a guess.

HTH -- Rick

View solution in original post

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

@rleir, Well it looks like you are right and provided some very helpful supporting information for understanding what WC is doing!  I will add this to my table in the question body.  Thank you!

 

After your post I decided to open both model and dwg in Creo, and sure enough I found that the dwg had a trailing space!

 

It is very surprising that WC removes the trailing space from the attribute filed so that when I checked in the following ways it shows NO trailing space:

  • Search results:
    • Highlighted the entire field
    • Exported the search results to .csv or .txt
  • Detail page:
    • Highlighted the entire attribute filed text does not show a trailing zero

It is interesting that PTC chose to not display trailing spaces in WC, while still restricting the search.  I always liked the simplicity and consistency of attribute searches, but this seems a step backwards.

 

@rleir , do you or anyone else know of a WC option that can turn on/off or modify this behavior?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Well, It looks like I cannot edit my own post/question so will add the table with @rleir very helpful post.

 

ECN Attribute Search Number results Type  of results Explanation
0046945 2 asm and dwg with no asterisks, there is an implied trailing asterisk
*46945 1 asm only with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk
*46945* 2 asm and dwg both asterisks supplied
46945* 0 none, as expected the leading 00 is needed, as understood
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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

@lscheeler Could you please explain why the asm is being shown with *46945 "with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk"? I just don't understand it. The drawing needs to be shown also, or am I wrong?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Hi Bruegg,

See my post from Mar 30, it will help explain that.

 

Hi Lawrence, 

thanks for exposing some 'interesting' Windchill behaviour.

cheers -- Rick

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

@bmr did the post rleir help answer your question?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

@lscheeler I wish I could say yes, but I don't understand it. Could you please explain it in other words?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?


@bmr wrote:
"@lscheeler Could you please explain why the asm is being shown with *46945 "with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk"? I just don't understand it. The drawing needs to be shown also, or am I wrong?"
...

@lscheeler I wish I could say yes, but I don't understand it. Could you please explain it in other words?


I cannot help you understand why PTC did this but what this means is that if you don't use any stars in your attribute search, then

  • Windchill (WC) will assume a start at the end of your search criteria
  • So it is actually NOT searching for an EXACT match and nothing more
  • It is actually search for an exact match with a wildcard at the end
  • So having a wildcard anywhere in search criteria will turn off WC from assuming a wildcard at the end.

 

Since this is pretty confusing considering the following:

  • "*" represent the wildcard that WC uses
  • For this discussion only, let "%" represent the wildcard that WC uses but hides.
  • Then:

 

 

 

Actual ECN Attribute Search Equivalent Implied ECN Attribute Search (using "%") Number of Result What actual ECN attribute values were Explanation
0046945 0046945% 2

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

with no asterisks, there is an implied trailing asterisk
*46945 *46945 1

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk
*46945* *46945* 2

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

both asterisks supplied
46945* 46945* 0

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

the leading 00 is needed, as understood

(😥 tables are terrible on this form as I can't hardly adjust anything!)

 

This is based on the rules that @rleir stated and I verified with my situation, however, I have not tested if this applies to all text or just spaces...or what happens if the space is prior to the text instead of trailing.  Perhaps someone else has tested this...?

 

I hope this is clearer and helps! 😀

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Hi all,

If someone can find a reference in the Windchill docs, that would help this discussion.

To sum it up, "there is an implied trailing asterisk when you have not used asterisks at the start".

If you search for 00469 then Windchill searches for 00469* and finds things.

If you search for *469* then Windchill searches for *469* and finds things.  BUT

if you search for 469 then Windchill searches for 469* without the leading zero's, and does not find what you want.

Did I just muddy the waters?

HTH -- Rick

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

@rleir @bmr @STEVEG 

 

We tested another search and we found that the assumed/implied wildcard at the end is only a PARTIAL wildcard!  So for example, if we search

  • "0046945" it will find "0046945 "
  • "004694" will NOT find "0046945" nor "0046945 "
  • I have not tested how WC works if spaces are anywhere else in the attribute (e.g. " 0046945" or "004694 5").
  • We see this using WC11.0 M030
  • This is where PTC documentation would be very helpful if anyone has any links! 😀 Here are some that I found:

 

So these are the updated attribute search rules from my previous post based on my current testing/knowledge:

  • Windchill (WC) will assume a PARTIAL wildcard at the end of your search criteria, but may ONLY apply to spaces
  • So attribute Searches are actually NOT searching for an EXACT match and nothing more
  • They are actually searching for an exact match with a PARTIAL wildcard at the end
  • So having a wildcard anywhere in search criteria will turn off WC from assuming a partial wildcard at the end.
  • Since this is pretty confusing considering the following:
    • "*" represent the wildcard that WC uses
    • For this discussion only, let "%" represent the wildcard that WC uses but hides.
      • So far this implied trailing wildcard works for trailing spaces but not for all/most characters.
    • Then:
Actual ECN Attribute Search Equivalent Implied ECN Attribute Search (using "%") Number of Result What actual ECN attribute values were Explanation
0046945 0046945% 2

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

with no asterisks, there is an implied trailing asterisk
*46945 *46945 1

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

with a leading asterisk, there is no implied trailing asterisk
*46945* *46945* 2

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

both asterisks supplied
46945* 46945* 0

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

the leading 00 is needed, as understood

004694

(This row is new from my previous post)

% 0

asm: "0046945"

dwg: "0046945 "

Apparently the implied trailing wildcard (which I'm representing as "%") doesn't work for everything but does for trailing spaces.

 

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

PTC,  WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?

 

This all sounds like:

Searching one way works sometimes, but not for others.  Then it works another way in other searches unless you want to do a search on Mondays and Thursdays.  Yikes!

 

Why can't I just type in a sequence of characters, use an asterisk as a wildcard anywhere in the sequence and as many as I want (just like most other programs in the world), and get a simple search result?

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

Unfortunately those links didn't work (I think they are to your company's installation of the help files), but I tried to search for the simple one on PTC's website and perhaps found what you were referring to on spaces and wildcards:

 

 

From this I gathered some especially important points about INDEXED searches:

  • "WC Index Search does NOT index spaces"! (emphasis added! 🙂)
  • "Spaces are only used to split data into distinct keyword strings."

2020-04-30_13-59-07.png

This still doesn't explain non-indexed searches though because:

  • "WC database searches interpret spaces literally"
  • "...non-indexed search...keyword term must account for every character in the value field, including any spaces."

 

According to this documentation I think that non-indexed attribute searches should contain the spaces.

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

This is insane.  What a convoluted mess.

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Re: WC Attribute Search not showing all results when using wildcard?!?

That's because it is.

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