Feature Article: Replacing Text in Multiple Records at Once

August 2017    Tags: ,

Typos happen, and sometimes they happen on a larger scale. When you need to change text in multiple records at once, what can you do? Use PracticeMaster’s Find and Replace! Find and Replace can be used to find text in one or more fields and/or records and optionally replace it – all at once.

You can access the Find and Replace window from any List tab via Edit | Find and Replace,findandreplace by pressing Ctrl+F, or by selecting Find and Replace from the Take Action group in the Quick Clicks pane. If you want to see which records contain the text you want to find, from the Find and Replace window simply enter the desired text in the Search For field and click Find. The Search Results will list all records in which the text is found as well as the field where the text is located.

To replace text, enter the desired replacement text in the Replace With field. You can then replace each instance individually by clicking the Replace button, or you can replace all instances in the Search Results section by clicking the Replace All button.

Note: Because Find and Replace may not be easily undone, we recommend backing up your data prior to using the Replace All option due to the number of records that may be changed.

The following options in the Find and Replace window can be used to be more precise when searching.

Search Records

In the Search Records section, you can select to search the Current List or Highlighted Records. When selecting Current List, all records on the List tab of the file will be searched. This option takes into account any filters that have been applied to the file. Selecting Highlighted Records will only search those records that are currently highlighted on the List tab.

Search Fields

In the Search Fields section, you can select to search All Fields or Specific Fields. Selecting Specific Fields can help when you only want to find and/or replace text if it is included in certain fields, such as Description or Notes.

Search Options

In the Search Options section, you can select Match Case and/or Find whole word only. Selecting the Match Case check box will only return results that match the case of the text entered in the Search For field. For example, if the Search For field contains “Harry Henderson,” then any instances of “harry henderson,” “Harry henderson,” or “harry Henderson” will not be included in the Search Results section.

Selecting the Find whole word only check box will only return results that match the text in the Search For field exactly. If the check box is cleared, then it will return all words that contain the text in the Search For field. For example, let’s say that “Phil” is entered in the Search For field. If the Find whole word only check box is selected, the Search Results will not contain records with “Phillip,” “Phillips,” “philosophy,” etc. If the check box is cleared, then these words would be included in the Search Results.

Replace Options

In the Replace Options section, you can select Only replace matching text or Replace entire field contents. When selecting the Only replace matching text option, only the text that matches the Search For field will be replaced within the field. Conversely, when selecting the Replace entire field contents option, the entire field’s contents will be replaced by the Replace with text.

Find and Replace is a powerful feature that can find text and/or make changes in hundreds of records at once. Try it out the next time you need to make the same change in multiple records and see how much time you can save.

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