Issue with filter in People List View screen

RM10…0.0.0 64 bit, Windows 10

I’m probably just missing something obvious, but I was just now trying to filter People List View by the Black surname. I couldn’t figure out a way to eliminate the Blackburn and Blackwell surnames from the list.

I know to precede the name with "    For example "smith can be used in the search box to eliminate surnames such as Highsmith from filter. But I don’t know how to eliminate Blackburn and Blackwell from the filter.


Good question something with a stop char or “<” or “>” … it would be nice to have help with list and examples (what can and can not be done)

Poking around, I found the following behaviours:

  • The " metacharacter to match the beginning of the string operates on the Surname alone, on both surname and given simultaneously but not on the Given alone
  • If the "metacharacter is used, only a literal match on the surname allows for matching to continue on the Given. The wildcard characters % and _ are treated as literals up to the comma demarking the start of the Given pattern in which they are again wildcards. However, matching is position dependent unlike a search without the quotation mark which looks for a pattern match anywhere within the Given.
  • There is no metacharacter to match the end of the string for either Surname or Given.

Edit: while there is no end of string metacharacter, there is a trick with which you can stop on “Black” and suppress “Blackburn” et al by exploiting the % wildcard thusly:

  • Search term ["black,%] (without the brackets) gives the needed literal match that allows the given name matching to continue.
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I’ve been away from the computer a good bit today, but I wanted to confirm that Tom’s trick does work for me. It requires the leading " and the , and the % immediately following the ,

Also if you follow example above followed by a space and the middle name or part of the middle name you will get those that have the surname and any first name with the middle name you types.

"smith,% This will result with with those that have a surname Smith and any first name.
"smith,% Mary This will result with anyone with a surname Smith and anyone with a middle name Mary and no one else.


This all suggests to me that there is plenty of scope for the Help to be enhanced to cover these very useful techniques.

How about this?

Search Box Metacharacters

A metacharacter is a printable character that has special meaning to a computer program other than as a literal character, e.g., as a wildcard or control code. RootsMagic uses the following metacharacters in the Sidebar Index tab and People List search boxes. In the examples below, the square brackets [something] denote that their contents are the search term to be entered.

A single comma denotes the separation between Surname and Given names search terms.

[searchterm1] (no comma) searches Surname only.
[,searchterm2] searches Given only
[searchterm1,searchterm2] searches Surname for a match on searchterm1 and then for a match on searchterm2 in Givens.

The percent sign % wildcard matches any sequence of zero or more characters.

Example: [Be%t] will return surname results Bennet, Bentley, Cuthbertson, Fauberget. Note that simply entering plain text is equivalent to entering [%text%]

The double quote " metacharacter as the first character forces a literal match (no wildcard interpretation) to the search term from the beginning of the surname; wildcards remain effective in the Givens search term (an exact search of Givens is available in People Search). .

[John] will match any Surname with John anywhere in it (Johnson, Littlejohn, etc.).
["John] will match Surnames that start with John, e.g., Johnson.
["John,] will find everyone whose Surname is only John.
["smith,% Mary] will find only Smiths having an additional Given name beginning with Mary.

The underscore _ wildcard matches any single character.

Example: [SM_TH,] will return results for SMITH and SMYTH

Edited to describe metacharacters and to improve explanation of "

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Thanks----Sound Great to me Tom now all you have to do is email it to support :smiley:
per there notice

I’ve edited it some more…