Search Applications, Objects, Users, and Expressions

Overview

Designers need to be able to quickly find objects within Appian Designer and the Application Designer. There are a variety of options to enable fast and flexible searching. This article explains how to use the search and filter functionality across the various designer views.

Within the Appian Designer level, we support searching across all Applications, all Objects, and all Users within the environment.

Searching Applications

When you are viewing APPLICATIONS, your search string will be run against Application names and descriptions and return a list of all matching applications.

Filters

You can also use dates to limit your results to Applications based on when they were last updated.

Set your date filters in the the Last Modified section below the search box.

This will limit your results to all Applications that were last updated on or after the From date, and all that were last updated on or before the To date.

Searching Objects

When you are viewing OBJECTS, by default, your search string will be run against all object names and descriptions. However, you can change what you would like to search against once you return your first set of search results.

Search Options

Search UUID and ID

Once you've searched, you can change the default search to Search UUID and ID. You will find this option in the upper-right corner of your search results.

Toggling your search to Search UUID and ID will run your search string(s) against the UUID or local ID of the object. The UUID of an object remains stable across different environments, whereas the object's local ID may change.

The UUID search option is helpful when trying to troubleshoot missing dependency problems on inspect or import. The local ID is the Appian object identifier that gets stored in process and external database tables. This search option is useful for finding objects like documents, folders, and groups, particularly when debugging.

Search Expressions

After running a search, you can also change the default search to Search Expressions. You will find this option in the upper-right corner of your search results.

Toggling your search to Search Expressions will run your search string(s) against the expression content of your objects.

In this search mode, the Description column is replaced with an Expression column that displays a snippet of the matching expression (or the first matching expression, if more than one is found in the same object). For example, a search for dashboardLayout_17r1 would return all rules with a!dashboardLayout_17r1( in the Expression column.

Expression Search Result

This search is conducted against the expressions in all design objects within your search set. This may be anything from a gateway expression in a process model, the definition of an expression rule, or the visibility expression of a record view. It's a powerful way to find plug-in functions, look for specific components, or easily hunt down legacy functions so you can take advantage of their improved, modern versions.

Filters

You can filter your results by object type and last modified date.

Object Type

You can filter your object results by type from the Object Type section under the search box. Simply select the object types to which you'd like your search results limited; selecting more than one object type will include those types in the results. When any object is selected in that list, all unselected objects will be excluded from the search results.

Last Modified Date

You are also able to limit your search results by when the object was last modified.

Set your date filters in the the Last Modified section below the search box.

This will limit your results to all objects that were last modified on or after the From date, and all that were last modified on or before the To date.

Searching Users

When you are viewing USERS, your search string will be run against all user full names, usernames, and emails. Designers who are basic users can edit their own user properties and see read-only details about the other users in the results. System Administrators can edit the user properties and view group membership of any user.

Filters

In addition, system administrators can filter the results by user status.

By default, the User Status filter is set to show Active users. You can change this selection to Inactive to only display deactivated users or to All to search across active and inactive users at once.

The Application Designer search works the same as Searching Objects from the Appian Designer view, except the set of searchable objects is limited to those included in the application from which you are performing the search. This is also true when you're inside a folder; any search your perform will only search the objects found within that folder.

When you're viewing a folder or group, the search and filter options are slightly different. The Search Expressions option is hidden when you're viewing a group, since groups don't have expressionable fields. The Object Type filter only contains the type options that are appropriate for the context and groups have an additional filter for Membership Type.

See also: Document Management, Group Management, and Folder Hierarchies in Appian Designer

Notes About Searching Expressions

  • The search across expressions is case-insensitive, and treats all special characters as a space character. For example, the search terms apply( and apply will return identical results, as will the search terms CRM_getCustomerNames and crm getcustomernames.

  • Given this behavior for special characters, we automatically strip out Appian domains from the beginning of search terms to prevent confusion. Since the search a!applyComponents would be treated as a applyComponents, and therefore return more results than intended, we strip the domain and simply search for applyComponents. You can see the adjusted search term in the blue bar above your results.

  • When a search term is part of a longer word, it will only match if it matches the beginning of that word. For example, the search customer or customerFeedback will find uses of the customerFeedbackForm interface, but the searches feedback or feedbackForm will not, since the name of the rule does not start with those terms.

FEEDBACK