Backwards Regular Expression Search



  • After almost half a year of not being able to backwards search in N++, I finally came across this thread:

    https://community.notepad-plus-plus.org/topic/19512/backward-regular-expression-searching-disabled

    which pointed me here:

    https://community.notepad-plus-plus.org/topic/19514/7-8-7-release-candidate-4

    It turns out this was disabled on purpose and was regular expression related (I almost never turn off regular expression search). I’m pretty happy today that I am able to backwards search again, but I don’t know what the expected workflow was to figure this out. It didn’t help me that there were Volatile search options that seemed new around that time and I found a bit confusing, so I assumed there was just a new bug that needed to be fixed.

    I don’t want to complain, as I’ve been using Notepad++ for a very long time and love it and recommend it to everyone, but I was pretty close to trying to find an alternative since it seemed like backwards searching was broken for so long.

    Ideally, I’d love it if backwards search was permanently enabled by default but I guess there are some bugs that are difficult to fix here. I’ll offer a couple alternative ways to present this to the user (that would have instantly solved my problem when it started happening) in the hopes of improving the experience for future users that run into this (a niche audience I’m sure, so the effort is questionable… :):

    1. Show a dialog to the user if they try to backwards regex search that points them to the power user setting (or allows them to modify it on the spot).
    2. Show a simple status message that says something like “Backwards regex currently disabled, see the ‘regexBackward4PowerUser’ setting”.

    Thanks for the awesome ever improving text editor!

    Stephen



  • @sj-bt

    Just to save you from further disappointment, this forum is for discussion of how Npp can be used and whether there may be workarounds for known limitations. It is better to make a feature request as described here.


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