Find and replace text function?

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trffz
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Find and replace text function?

Post by trffz » Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:43 pm

Hello,

its possible to find and replace text? Not Text “Editing” (Use the Text Box Tool to blank over existing text) etc.
Thanks

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Will - Tracker Supp
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:48 am

Hi trffz,

Thanks for the post - a Search and Replace feature has not yet been implemented in the Editor, but as of my last conversation with the Dev. Team, regarding this, it was planned for a future release. I'm not sure on specifically when, but it is on our to-do list :)

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iberger
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by iberger » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:57 am

hello,
some news about this usefull function?
A find/replace/replace all we be GREAT when we have only a PDF file and not the source.
Thanks for the information when this function will be implemented.
Igor

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Radi - Tracker Supp
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Radi - Tracker Supp » Tue Aug 16, 2016 8:01 am

Hi iberger,

I'm sorry, but we still do not have a fixed release date for this feature.

Regards,
Radi

StevenCharles
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by StevenCharles » Sun Mar 05, 2017 1:26 am

I recently purchased PDF-XChange Editor Plus.

When is a find and replace function coming?

I have a pile of PDFs I need to work over.

I'd rather not have to re-up Acrobat on my new computer to get this function.

Thank you.

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:13 am

Hello StevenCharles,

I still do not have a concrete date for this feature's availability but will now ask my colleagues and see if I can get any further info for you!

Regards,
Stefan

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:32 pm

Hello StevenCharles,

We are now finishing a new ribbon interface for the Editor. Once that is done - we will look at find and replace as well. There is still no fixed date for the availability of this feature - but it should happen in one of the next few builds after the ribbon is complete.

Regards,
Stefan

iroliveirajr
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by iroliveirajr » Fri Nov 30, 2018 1:55 pm

Has the search and replace feature already been implemented in the Editor?

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:12 pm

Hello iroliveirajr,

I am afraid that the answer is still 'not yet'.

Sorry I don't have any better news!

Cheers,
Stefan

Timur Born
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Timur Born » Fri Nov 30, 2018 9:27 pm

Absolutely +1.

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TrackerSupp-Daniel
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Fri Nov 30, 2018 9:38 pm

Noted! 8)
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RMan
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by RMan » Wed Jan 30, 2019 3:25 pm

Is the Find/Replace function still missing in the latest release and what is the hold up on this very useful feature. It appears that through the Spell Check you have the ability all there programatically and likely just need the Search Pane updated to add some replace features?

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TrackerSupp-Daniel
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Wed Jan 30, 2019 7:51 pm

Hello RMan,

I am afraid that this function is still not in the current release of the Editor.

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Timur Born
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Timur Born » Tue Sep 03, 2019 2:06 pm

Hello,

is this still worked on?

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Tue Sep 03, 2019 7:24 pm

Hello Timur,

It is still in progress, but unfortunately it is a function that is on the backburner as there are a great number of issues that will arise with its implementation.

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Timur Born
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Timur Born » Tue Sep 03, 2019 8:19 pm

I understand. For me personally it is not very high on the priority list compared to other stuff (first of all: better search results). No idea how often others need to search and replace?!

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:40 pm

Hi Timur,

I personally would have a handful of uses for find and replace, so have been pushing internally for this wherever I see the opportunity. I can imagine the vast number of users such a function would help in their daily work. The devs are still trying to sort it all out, so that they can bring it to us as soon as possible, but until a few other items on the list are complete, this one will be troublesome, to say the least.

As such, and as always, I cannot provide a guarantee on a timeline for it, but this time I can say with some confidence that it will be on the longer end of the wait scale before this is made available.

Kind regards,
Daniel McIntyre
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Ovg
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Ovg » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:20 am

It would be nice to have regular expressions for Search/Replace :roll:
It's impossible to lead us astray for we don't care even to choose the way.
PDF-XChange PRO, 8.0 (Build 334.0) / W7 x64 SP1

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Tracker Supp-Stefan » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:24 am

Hello Ovg,

Yes it will be nice and very powerful, but also quite complicated to support for a customer who is not good with RegEx!

I will see to get this discussed in a future meeting, but can't promise anything at this point!

Cheers,
Stefan

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Ovg
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Ovg » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:38 am

Hello Stefan!
I don't think that you should support users with RegExp, (the same as with JS :wink: ), there is many sources about RegExp, this isn't a problem at all.
It's impossible to lead us astray for we don't care even to choose the way.
PDF-XChange PRO, 8.0 (Build 334.0) / W7 x64 SP1

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Will - Tracker Supp » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:48 am

Hi OVG,

I agree with you there and suspect that the official policy would be the same as with JS, as you mentioned, should this be implemented.

Cheers,
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Puffolino
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Puffolino » Fri Sep 06, 2019 1:35 pm

Would love find&replace as well.

It would be also cool if found elements of a search could be modified (setting a font attribute, color or just doing a delete) for selected objects. Actually you can only select a single element of the result list.

Cheers.

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Tue Sep 10, 2019 12:14 am

We"ll see what can be done, but no promises today 8)
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Tkani_vezhovo

Post by Inn_JIlla » Thu Sep 12, 2019 11:02 pm

This rather good idea is necessary just by the way

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:10 am

Thank you for the added Support of this item Inn_Jilla!

Have a great day!
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RMan
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by RMan » Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:20 am

Maybe look at expanding the Spell Checker to include a manual Find->Replace below it, that way it can be updated without a major change to the program? It would also benefit the Spell Checker to have a way to find words that were not in the dictionary. That way it's less UI changes for the programmers.
FindReplace.JPG
FindReplace.JPG (16.34 KiB) Viewed 724 times
Or maybe it's easier to pull the code from the Spell Checker that replaces the text once it is found and merge that to the existing Search functionality?

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Paul - Tracker Supp » Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:16 pm

Thanks RMan for the suggestion. All these comments are good stuff.

I know one of the concerns raised about this feature is the challenge of how to "flow" text when the replacement text is significantly different from that which it replaces. In a linear document like a Word Processing document, or HTML there is no real concern as the format is designed to flow. Not so a PDF which is entirely coordinate based. In fact it was originally intended to prevent this kind of use, however the market demands that PDFs be editable and users demand it work like a Word Processor.

The fact that it can now be edited with as much flow as we see in modern PDF editors is testimony to a huge amount of hard work by some very clever people.

I mention this because the Search and Replace feature may seem trivial from an End User perspective, but it is a huge undertaking for our already hard pressed development team.

So keep the suggestions coming, everything said here is heard, even if it is not immediately obvious.
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by RMan » Fri Sep 13, 2019 5:02 pm

Understandable and they have done an amazing job on the Editor and it really does a great job of recognizes paragraphs and such.

From my end user view though is the spell checker really doesn't currently take into account resizing to fit so a Find/Replace that works identical to the spell checker is better than having nothing at all. At least if you get that into the users hands it might cover 50% to 80% of the cases with minimal work. One common use might be to change the date in a PDF on all pages so it should be close to the same size.

Then in the future you can work on fixing the other cases, or more likely half of the other cases as some will always have to be manually corrected.

I'm sure they have already thought about an option to resize the font for what they have determined is a line of text if they know that. I know they determine what is a paragraph of text is but if they know what they consider to be a line of text and you modify the font height slightly to compensate for it the change in characters you probably wouldn't be able to see the change much and it wouldn't mess up the other lines in the paragraph.

But you are correct and it's going to get messy quickly for those other 20 to 50% of the cases.

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Paul - Tracker Supp » Fri Sep 13, 2019 5:12 pm

Fair comment and definitely something we will take into consideration about the smaller changes.

Any time we arbitrarily change things without user input/direction we open ourselves to complaint. So making intelligent decisions on how to modify existing text can be very difficult. Changing the font or size of some text within a phrase or sentence can have unexpected effects. I guarantee you some users will see everything... ;-)

Thus the discussion and process of improvement continues.

:-)
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by pjaj » Thu Oct 31, 2019 12:43 pm

I realise that find and replace may have difficulties in implementation, but as far as I'm concerned it is the most important missing feature in PDF-Exchange. There are workarounds such as export to Word and re-import after editing, but that often loses formatting. Or you can individually find and replace by pasting or over typing the new text, but this is tedious if you have a lot of identical changes to make such as changing all the "£" symbols to "€" throughout a document.

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Paul - Tracker Supp » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:28 pm

Hi pjaj,

the use case where one replace a single character is a good one, and certainly lends itself to a quick solution, however, we are reluctant to deliver the feature without it being fully developed. I just don't see the development team wanting to release any kind of search and replace that is not thoroughly thought through and implemented.

We will continue to work on this behind the scenes. If and when a complete solution is created it expect it all to be released together. Until then I am afraid we wait.

I hope that helps.
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by Dromandon » Wed Nov 06, 2019 7:43 pm

Wish you best) Great programme and this function will be the cherry on the )

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Wed Nov 06, 2019 9:54 pm

:D
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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by adiva » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:05 am

I fear that the "search and replace" function will never be implemented :?

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Re: Find and replace text function?

Post by TrackerSupp-Daniel » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:58 am

Hello Adiva,

Never is a strong word, but it is true that the feature has been a long time coming, so I understand your doubt. We do intend to offer this as a feature at some point in the future. However from a technical perspective, a functional search and replace function in the PDF format is excessively complex, and as such will still be a fairly long wait before we see it.

If it was implemented right now, it could likely be considered the single most complicated feature that we offer (above even the EOCR engine and 3D plugins). If any aspect of the feature was done wrong, it would result in erroneous changes in users documents, which could be highly problematic if not manually checked before saving, and that is ignoring the difficulty of determining where exactly to make each change.

PDF does not store text in the nice editable blocks you see when working in them, the data is stored in a large series of coordinates and boxes. Sometimes these are neat single line items, and sometimes each individual letter on a line has its own set of coordinates. Unlike in flow based applications, such as MS Word, we need to account for every possibility and ensure that these items are affected properly.

In many cases the boxes that we estimate to "flow" together while editing, dont line up perfectly on the vertical plane, we need to account for that. Sometimes there is a hyphen because a word is split to the second line, unlike in MS Office (where it is an indicator), that hyphen is a physical character in PDF.
Sometimes due to how the edit as blocks mode works, something like this, is recognized as a paragraph and as there are no "space" or "return characters, this might be considered a "word" while searching:
image.png
image.png (13.95 KiB) Viewed 134 times
If someone wanted to replace the word Sample, we need to decide, automatically without any user interaction, how to handle this, and confidently expect the user to trust that it is correct, then save and close the document.

These items are only a very small selection of the numerous scenarios we have discussed (I'm not part of the Dev team, so I surely haven't heard about the most difficult cases yet), and are the largest reasons why we have not yet implemented a feature like this.
Unfortunately "prompt the user to confirm when this happens" (one of my earlier suggestions to the Dev team) is not a valid answer to these questions, as it would often result in dozens of prompts in a single search/replace operation (for a semi-large document), possibly many more than that if for example, the document was an old spotty scanned document which had seen OCR performed.

Rest assured that this is not a feature we will ever forget about or stop striving for, it is a very frequent topic of discussion and those discussions sometimes spawn other similar features, such as the new "Find and redact" function. These will be implemented incrementally until we finally have a fully working find and replace feature.
Daniel McIntyre
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