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Search typed text only (no attachments)


MichaelL

Idea

How do I search only text I've typed in the note, ignoring attachments?  I love attachment searching, but sometimes I want to ignore those in a search.

I want to search for lets say a country name I typed in, but I have a project docket file attached to many notes (weekly meeting) that has the same country name in it each week.  I want to ignore those attachment references to the country name, and only return notes where I typed the country name into the note.  Ideas?  Almost like a "-attachments" to ignore attachments.

Thanks!

 

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1 hour ago, MichaelL said:

How do I search only text I've typed in the note, ignoring attachments?  I love attachment searching, but sometimes I want to ignore those in a search.

Moved to the Feature Requests forum.  Please indicate your support using the voting buttons in the upper left corner

Currently, you can specify search terms like "intitle:", there could also be "intext:"

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Hi.  Every database needs curation - tweaking details so that (as far as possible) you get the results you're looking for.  I do that sort of thing with every search;  there are titles to be edited,  tags to be added,  notes to delete or move.  There's no way (AFAIK) to exclude words in attachments but still search notes - except that your idea is probably the best.  If you find you're getting lots of hits from that source in a given search,  just go through the hits and add the 'attachment' tag to any note that has one.  Then your "<searchterm> -tag:attachments" search would work.

If you wish to be able to exclude all attachments,  you could do a search for " resource:application/* " and apply the tag to all notes with attachments.

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@gazumped - The problem is is DO want to search the notes that have attachments.  Just not the attachments themselves.  Let's say I have 100 notes with similar attachments (same file, updated weekly).  And 5 of those notes have the word I'm searching for.  Today I get all 100 notes (because the name of the country is in every attachment).  I want only the 5 notes where I typed in "Canada" in the typed notes, where we had an update or comment on Canada.

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Yeah,  sorry;  I did understand that - I just got overwhelmed by my own brilliant idea.  Well,  there's no direct method in Evernote unfortunately;  unless you can encrypt attachments so they can't be searched (but that means no searching,  ever...) or move them to Google Drive where they also are not (for the moment) searchable,  or even move the text for that document to a separate note...

OK new suggestion.  Create a duplicate copy of all notes with attachments.  Move those notes to a separate notebook.  Delete the attachments.  Search there for your text.  The notes can be tied back to the attachment by including the original notebook(s) in your search.  Maybe?

A better option for the future would be to duplicate notes with attachments to a 'search' notebook without the attachment.  You could also create a link from the 'index' note in that notebook back to the note+attachment elsewhere.

 

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Workarounds.

  1. If you know most of the culprit notes you could - them out, though you might also - out the a note where the search term was contained in the note text and the attachment.  So a search with -"docket file name" added to the search should shrink the number of false positives in your case. 
  2. Or add a tag named Attachment to all of your notes containing attachments and then add -tag:Attachments to the search to remove those notes from the search results.

.FWIW.

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Hi Cal - the OP wants to search notes with attachments,  but process only the note body,  not the attachment content.  AFAIK while the two are connected,  there's no way to omit the content from searches.  So you have to either move the attachment to somewhere it can't be searched,  like GDrive;  or you have to set up a copy of the note only in a new notebook,  linked back to the original note+attachment,  so you can search that notebook only but still jump to the attachment if you need to.

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Hey Gaz,

Yeah I got that, it seemed from the post that the OP did not want notes in the search results where the docket file was included.  I offered a solution and noted it has the risk of missing notes if the search term is in the body and the attachment.  It seemed if the attachment was causing more hits than the OP wanted and minus-ing those notes might help. 

Not perfect, just a workaround that the OP could consider based upon how large the risk.  That and not having to split a bunch of notes if the risk is low.  You can always take the minus out of the search if you don't like the results.  But I agree, separating and linking the attachment should make it error free.

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Thanks everyone.  Since this is now in a feature request forum, I'll try to clarify with a few user stories.

Prerequisite: All my notes have both typed text and attachments for the purposes of this story.  And I wish to keep the attachments in the Evernote note, I do not want to have them linked somewhere else because the text wouldn't be searchable in Evernote in the cases I do want to search the attachments.

As a User, I want to search all my notes, So that I can find text that I typed or that is contained in a note attachment.

As a User, I want to search all my notes, So that I can find text that I typed, while omitting text contained in attachments.

As a User, I want to search all my notes, So that I can find text contained in any attachment, while excluding typed text. [This one I really never do, just included it for completeness or in case others search this way]

Thanks again!

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I'd like to see this feature implemented.  I have many notes with attachments, with all kinds of words therein.  But sometimes I just want to find some simple information such as a name or an address, and would like to search the typed text only, narrowing results to the typed text only.  As it is now, I get all kinds of results from PDFs and other attachments that are extraneous to such a simple search.

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10 hours ago, ln899 said:

I'd like to see this feature implemented.  I have many notes with attachments, with all kinds of words therein.  But sometimes I just want to find some simple information such as a name or an address, and would like to search the typed text only, narrowing results to the typed text only.  As it is now, I get all kinds of results from PDFs and other attachments that are extraneous to such a simple search.

Hi.  You've presumably already looked at the options described above...

I already get a similar problem with clipped web pages and the like.  It's partially that some clips contain stuff that isn't the reason that I clipped them,  but are still words that mess up my searches;  plus once you get past a certain volume of notes,  almost any basic search will turn up as many false positives as useful hits.

This is where I get onto my usual hobby horse of 'curation'.  There is no way,  in my considerable experience,  to have a database that is completely hands-off.  You always have a maintenance element of improving titles,  keywords,  tags and your knowledge of the search grammar.  If a search turns up records that shouldn't be there,  then they need to be edited so the correct hits have a tag you can use,  or the wrong ones have a tag you can exclude.  Or your search term(s) needs to be improved so that -forinstance- a search for commercial sand suppliers excludes the word 'holiday' so you don't get the away-day links your searched last summer.

It would be nice if Evernote would have an option to exclude attachments from searches,  but it seems like it wouldn't completely address the problem of notes containing additional irrelevant text,  and it's a 'nice to have' that comes low on the priority tree in my book.

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I would use this feature... it would work well into my workflow.  I review articles and documents in PDF form, and while I attach the PDFs into Evernote for reference and keeping notes with the source material, I most often only going to search my summary notes or highlights that I've directly typed into the note.  

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Workaround can be to put your notes in one note with a link to the PDF in another note.  Then adding -resource:application/pdf to the search eliminates the PDF containing notes.  You then have a link in the found notes to the PDF, and Shift-LeftMouse will open the PDF note in its own window so you can have both open at the same time.  FWIW.

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On 10/20/2018 at 11:52 AM, edwincv0@gmail.com said:

Want this feature.  Basically can't search notes because of this.  Take a lot of screenshots.  Don't want them showing up in my search result because text want to search is in the bookmarks bar of the screenshot.  Want text notes to pop up first that have my actual notes.

Hi.  You can probably exclude some factors from your search using the source: modifier - 

source:

Searches for notes by the application or other source used to create them (e.g., 'mail.smtp' for notes added via email, 'web.clip' for notes added using Web Clipper, etc.).

source:mobile.* will return all notes created on a mobile application of some type.

source:web.clip will return all notes added using Web Clipper.

You would at least be able to exclude clipped notes as a source,  though those might include some web-page text notes as well as bookmarks...

https://help.evernote.com/hc/en-us/articles/208313828

 

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I second this request so freakin' bad.

I love Evernote,  but this problem of not existing a "-attachments" search option (and vice versa: "only attachments) is the only time it has let me down. I'm a masters student and I've been using Evernote as a research management tool with great reliability. Keeping all my study notes, pdf texts, research diary, field notes, and all my research material (hundreds  of news articles).  But this single problem is keeping me from also using it as a Content Analysys Tool (CA) as good enough as a dedicated software such as Nvivo and others like it.

The solution offerd by @gazumped is making it possible to use it as such, but it has costed me two days of dedicated work to fix the issues to make it reliable again. One problem with copying all the notes in a notebook to a new one (besides the nuisance of having to do this) is that i either keep all the tags or delete all the tags for the newly created notes.

If i keep them i'll double my counts for each tag, and that's not good. I'll have to keep halving the numbers everytime i'm analyzing them and crossing them with other numbers.

If i delete all the tags, i'll have nothing to work with, unless i retag them as "tagname copy". And that just sucks till the end of days.

Please fix this and be awesome again, Evernote! I'll trade this tweak for a tutorial on how i've been using Evernote as CA tool for my research! =D

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Unbelievable that we don't have this basic functionality.  I'm a novelist and often attach 100,000-word novel manuscripts to emails to my editors or agents, and have those emails saved to Evernote (via BCC: to my Evernote address).  When I search, I want to find, for instance, any email that has the word "American" in it without Evernote throwing up many dozens of supposed hits because somewhere in the 100,000-word attachment the word "American" also happens to appear.  I mean really, how hard is that to code?  (Answer: it's not.)

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47 minutes ago, RobertJSawyer said:

I mean really, how hard is that to code?  (Answer: it's not.)

Not  to question your development estimate, but there are priorities.   The user support for this request is indicated by a total of 8 votes.

To indicate your support, use the voting buttons in the top left corner of the discussion.

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With due repsect, @DTLow, do you have any evidence whatsoever that Evernote cares one whit about the respective upvote tallies of feature requests?  Can you point to any trend whatsoever in what's being done by Evernote Corporation having any meaningful correlation with feature requests or the number of upvote clicks they receive?

I think  a lot of users, certainly including myself, have given up playing games here on the forum; to all appearances, our opinions or votes here are given no particular weight, if they're noted at all, by Evernote Corporation.  So boilerplate to tell people to upvote something if they want to see it is worse than useless; it actually deflects meaningful conversation.

The fact is that INCLUDE and EXCLUDE are basic, fundamental database-search functions; we shouldn't have to vote to have Evernote be a full-featured product in the space in which it competes.

Here are the latest release notes for Evernote for Windows; please demonstrate the correlation between this and upvoting on this forum; if you don't like this set of release notes, pick any set you wish from the last two years, and show the correlation ... if you can:

Release Notes for Version 6.16

Fixed:

  • We took care of some of the top sync and crash issues that were getting in your way.
  • We squashed some annoying editing and note title bugs that were buzzing around inside the app.
  • Now you’re 100% able to rename hidden tags from the toolbar. Up from 0%, so that’s quite an increase.
  • We had some attachment issues related to YouTube clips, PDFs, and shared notes. But we got professional help and worked through them.
  • There was a problem with dragging and dropping emails from Microsoft Outlook into a note. Things should be back to normal now though.
  • Switching notes would cause you to lose any edits you’d made to a business card. Since you probably made those changes for a reason, we fixed it.
  • We fixedd teh spel cheker.

Updated:

  • We tweaked the note list header to match its look on other platforms. That might not sound like much, but trust us, it was super annoying.
  • Now you can export a note with a missing source image (and all you see is that smug little icon instead) and import it back into your account. We’re still questioning the icon, but it refuses to tell us what it did with your image.
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3 minutes ago, RobertJSawyer said:

With due repsect, @DTLow, do you have any evidence whatsoever that Evernote cares one whit about the respective tally of feature requests?  Can you point to any trend whatsoever in what's being done by Evernote Corporation having any meaningful correlation with feature requests?

The only evidence I have is that Evernote has gone to the trouble and expense of maintaining these forums for users to post and discuss Feature Requests.

I can point you to posts from employees stating that user feedback is one of the criteria used in identifying priorities.

Regardless, I continue to post in these Feature Request forums.  I add requests, or support requests from other users.

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25 minutes ago, DTLow said:

The only evidence I have is that Evernote has gone to the trouble and expense of maintaining these forums for users to post and discuss Feature Requests.

Oh, pshaw, @DTLow.  The cost of user-support forums -- off-loading tech support onto an unpaid volunteer group of users -- is a cost-saver, not an act of generosity/commitment, on the part of any software corporation (and I say this as a former system operator of the volunteer-run user-support CompuServe WordStar forum from back in the late 1980s).  I'm glad to volunteer my services when I can help someone, too, but the existence of this forum is hardly a sign of corporate commitment to its users.

Now, if Evernote employees routinely popped up with answers and help, instead of one or two guys showing up once in a blue moon, THAT could be taken as a sign; please point to the Evernote employee who surpasses your own post count of 14,619 posts (Evernote-employed forum administrator Shane D has posted 294 times to date).

All best wishes.

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Hi all,

I am new to Evernote, and loving is so far, however I have one 'BIG' issue!
How do I search for I've typed in the note including the attachments?  I am unable to do this ? Is there a specal switch or something?

Cheers

 

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5 hours ago, Pat099 said:

Hi all,

I am new to Evernote, and loving is so far, however I have one 'BIG' issue!
How do I search for I've typed in the note including the attachments?  I am unable to do this ? Is there a specal switch or something?

Cheers

 

Hi. Always best to start a new thread for your own queries, rather than grab onto a 2-year old topic. However in this case: as a premium user you should find that both notes and attachments (of certain types) are searched for your terms automatically.  The 'types' includes Office - DOCX etc,  and PDF files,  as well as JPG and PNG pictures.  If your PDF attachments weren't saved as 'searchable' files,  it can take Evernote some hours,  or a day or so to index them fully - and large documents will not be processed by the system at all. 

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Hi

Thank you for your reply.
First, I could no find where to start a newpost/thread, and wondered if its because the support chat is closed?

I will see if the search works after a couple of days, and will check if the files are searchable pdf's

What would you say Evernote considers as a large document?

Cheers

 

 

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Hi.  Have a look for your OS here - https://discussion.evernote.com/forum/440-possible-bugstechnical-issues/ and check the top right heading of the page - there should be an option "start new topic".

Searchable PDF's: (https://help.evernote.com/hc/en-us/articles/208313388)

  • Scanned PDFs with clear, typed text (handwriting is not searchable inside PDFs)
  • PDFs that do not already contain text that you can select or copy
  • PDFs with at least one page with a small image (1025 pixels of image data)
  • PDFs less than 100 pages long
  • PDFs less than 25 MB in size
  • PDFs that are not password-protected
  • PDFs that are not corrupted or unreadable

- and as a subscriber you should have access to email support via Evernote.com

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I am sure that some of you consider Evernote's ability to search though attachments, even doing its own OCR on images and PDF, as godsend. For me it is the opposite: most of the time, I just want to search through my notes, the stuff I have written, and want to exclude occurrences of the word I am searching for in documents I might have attached for easy reference. Is this possible?

Without this, I feel even more the temptation not to store attachments in Evernote, which makes the product less valuable.

‑Alex

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7 hours ago, avernet said:

I just want to search through my notes, the stuff I have written, and want to exclude occurrences of the word I am searching for in documents I might have attached for easy reference. Is this possible?

"intext" search is not currently an option

I've merged your post with an ongoing feature request discussion
To indicate your support, use the vote button at the top left corner of the discussion

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4 hours ago, avernet said:

I am sure that some of you consider Evernote's ability to search though attachments, even doing its own OCR on images and PDF, as godsend. For me it is the opposite: most of the time, I just want to search through my notes, the stuff I have written, and want to exclude occurrences of the word I am searching for in documents I might have attached for easy reference. Is this possible?

Without this, I feel even more the temptation not to store attachments in Evernote, which makes the product less valuable.

‑Alex

Hi.  The only options you have currently are to search intitle:<keyword> or tag:<keyword> to avoid including 'other' content.  It's also possible to structure searches to include and exclude dates,  words and phrases to cut down on hits.  I've 'tamed' a large database over time by pruning large lists of hits down to the notes I actually want and then assigning a specific tag so that list is always available as a simple search.  You also have features like saved searches and 'favourites' to make a frequent search happen with one click.

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10 hours ago, avernet said:

I am sure that some of you consider Evernote's ability to search though attachments, even doing its own OCR on images and PDF, as godsend. For me it is the opposite: most of the time, I just want to search through my notes, the stuff I have written, and want to exclude occurrences of the word I am searching for in documents I might have attached for easy reference. Is this possible?

Without this, I feel even more the temptation not to store attachments in Evernote, which makes the product less valuable.

‑Alex

Yeah not doable today.  A workaround of sorts might be to store your attachments in their own notes and put links to them in the "text" note.  Then you could add -resource:application/pdf to the search to eliminate notes containing PDFs. 

PITA but it might work with the extra effort of creating the links (easy enough if you just drag the PDF note into the text note).  IAC you could search including attachments or not.  🤷🏿‍♂️

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16 hours ago, DTLow said:

I've merged your post with an ongoing feature request discussion
To indicate your support, use the vote button at the top left corner of the discussion

Thank you @DTLow. I did a search before posting, but apparently failed! And I've upvoted this feature request, as suggested.

12 hours ago, gazumped said:

I've 'tamed' a large database over time by pruning large lists of hits down to the notes I actually want and then assigning a specific tag so that list is always available as a simple search.

I agree: constant maintenance and pruning is key. I've also taken the habit of only putting in Evernote text that I type myself, and pretty much only allow short quote that I find particularly well worded as an exception to this rule. Summarizing and rewriting ideas "in my own words" helps me understand the concepts more deeply, and makes me use words that I am then more likely to also use in a search.

Also I don't have a lot of attachements: the vast majority of my files are in Drive instead of Evernote, and I'm linking to Drive from Evernote. But occasionally, having a PDF or image inline is really convenient, but the downside is that I then waste time when those attachments come up as the result from a search. Nothing is perfect!

‑Alex

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