Advanced search

On the Advanced tab it is possible to search all available fields in the data source by constructing a search statement. This is a powerful search option but does require some understanding of the Collections search language when constructing a statement:

Advanced search tab

Note: If you initiated a search by selecting Search (F7) in the top Toolbar, the Search box will contain options for fine-tuning the previous search (Widen, Narrow, Exclude). Details here.

As a rule, a search statement has three parts separated by spaces:

[search field] [search operator] [search value]

The search field is the field you want to search. The search value is the value you want to locate in the search field. The search operator (a symbol like = or designated term like equals), tells Collections how to treat the search value when looking for it in the search field.

To construct a search statement:

  1. Double-click a name in the Fields list, or type it directly into the Search statement box.
  2. Double-click an operator in the Operator list, or type it into the Search statement box (an operator is added to the search statement as a symbol or special word).
  3. Type the search value into the Search statement box.

A search for the word dog anywhere in the title (TI) field would be written as:

title _ dog

Each step in constructing a search statement is described below, followed by a collection of useful searches and examples of search statement with explanations:


When your search is run, your search statement is added to the Set(s) table at the bottom of the Advanced tab. From there it can be:

  • Retrieved: the same records returned when the search statement was added to the Set(s) table will be listed even if new records meet the search criteria.

  • Executed: the search statement is run; if your data has changed since the search statement was added to the Set(s) table, the set of records returned may be different to the retrieved set.

  • Copied to the Search statement box and modified; and combined with other sets.

Additional Advanced search options