Selective Formatting in Searches

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 29, 2014)

Word includes a powerful find and replace feature that can be used to find all sorts of information and then replace it with equal aplomb. One thing you cannot do, however, is to search for information that has "mixed formatting" within it. For instance, you cannot search for the character X in regular typeface followed by the character Y in a monospace typeface.

There are, of course, ways around this, provided you are willing to use macros to do your work. For instance, your macro could do the following:

  1. Search for the next instance of XY.
  2. When found, examine the instance to determine if the desired formatting is present.
  3. If not, start over at step 1.

This approach, while easy to create, has only a limited utility. Since step 2 would need to be "hard coded" into the macro, going through the trouble of changing the macro to accommodate the formatting needs would only be of value if you have quite a few instances of XY that you are looking for.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1552) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Creating a Table of Contents from Heading Levels

If your document is any length at all, adding a table of contents is a nice touch. This tip demonstrates how easy it is ...

Discover More

Automatic Font Color Won't Print Properly

Imagine that you go to print your document and all the text you can see on the screen just isn't there on the ...

Discover More

Locking the Size of Pictures in Comments

Excel allows you to place pictures inside of comments. If you do this, you may have experienced a situation where the ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (menu)

Find and Replace in a Column or Row

Need to search for information in a table? Word allows you to easily limit your search to an entire column or row, as ...

Discover More

Using Find and Replace to Change Text Case

Can you really use Find and Replace to change the case of text in your document? Not really, but that shouldn't stop you ...

Discover More

Keeping a Replace Operation Displayed

The Find and Replace tool is designed to help you find and replace information as quickly as possible. However, you may ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 + 1?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.