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Find and Replace Data

How to Find and Replace Data in Access

Find and Replace Data

Finding information in a database would be like finding a needle in a haystack if it weren’t for Access’s Find feature. The Find feature allows you to quickly search tables, queries, and forms for specified text.

Find Data

The Find command in Access is similar to the Find command in other Office programs, but it contains some additional features as well. For example, you can choose to match part or all the data in a field.

  1. Select a cell in the datasheet.
  2. Click the Find button.

    You can also press Ctrl + F to find data.

    Find and Replace Data

    The Find and Replace dialog box appears with the Find tab displayed.

  3. Type the text or value you want to find in the Find What text field.

    You can also select a Match Option here to broaden or narrow your search.

  4. Click the Find Next button.
    Find and Replace Data

If you want to limit your search within a specific field, click its column header or a cell in that column and click Find. Then, click the Look In list arrow and select Current field. Alternatively, select Current document to broaden your search.

Replace Data

You can also use Access's Replace feature to replace every occurrence of specific text with new text you specify.

  1. Select the column header or click in any cell in the column (field) you want to replace text.
  2. Click the Replace button.

    You can also press Ctrl + H to replace data.

    Find and Replace Data

    The Find and Replace dialog box appears with the Replace tab displayed.

  3. Type the text or value you want to replace in the Find What field.
  4. Type the text or value you want to replace the existing text with in the Replace With field.
  5. Click Replace or Replace All.
  6. Click Yes.
    Find and Replace Data

Finding or replacing data in a form works the same way as in a table, except that you select controls to search instead of fields. When you use the Find command in a form, Access is searching the underlying table.

You can find, but not replace, data in query results.

To find wildcard characters, type an opening bracket ([), the wildcard character you want to find, and a closing bracket (]) in the Find What field. For example, you would type [*] to find all instances of an asterisk.

Using the Match List Options
Whole Field Finds only data that is exactly the same. Example: John finds John, but not Johnson, or Sue and John.
Any Part of a Field Finds data anywhere in the field. Example: John finds John, Johnson, and Sue and John.
Start of a Field Finds data only at the beginning of the field. Example: John finds John and Johnson, but not Sue and John.

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