[RESOLVED]Find and Replace Won't Search Entire Solution

Has anyone had the same problem as me with Visual Studio 2005 where the " Find and Replace " dialog box doesn’t search " Entire Solution " even when you select the option?

I am not sure why it is not working for you,  one thing to make sure is to check the "Hidden Text" checkbox.


Make sure you click "Mark as Answer" for any post which has helped you.

 Thanks for the suggestion, yes I’m pretty sure I’ve checked all the   appropriate options — do you never get this sort of problem?

Never got this problem. hum…strange problem..


To better understand your issue, please confirm the following infomration:

  • <div mce_keep="true">Firstly, please try to run devenv /resetsettings or
    devenv /setup from Visual Studio Command Prompt.
  • <div mce_keep="true">If we disable Add-ns (“Tools” | “Add-in Manager”) and run “devenv.exe /safemode”, do we still have the problem? This can eliminate the possibility that third party Add-ins are causing problems.</div>
  • <div mce_keep="true">If this cannot help you, you can try to remove the Visual Studio 2005 and install it. Please folowing
    How to remove Visual Studio 2005http://support.microsoft.com/kb/907965) if you uninstall Visual Studio.</div>


I hope this helps.

I know it’s an old issue but I just became a member and I figure I may as well chime in. I had a similar issue today when I tried to search in my own solution. I was staring directly at the offending text string inside a manifest file from an auto-generated
pkg folder. I did a search for the string and got nothing. I then right clicked on the pkg file (I don’t know why really) and noticed the option "Include In Project". It occurred to me that the manifest file was thus not included in the project. Of course
since the manifest was not in the project it was also not in the solution, hence it was not searched. After including the pkg folder in the project a researched the solution and voilà!

The MathNinja

I have been having the same problems using Visual Studio 2008. Frustratingly, the behavior is inconsistent. I was beginning to suspect that it failed only for large project and solution sizes. I had to try a LOT of combinations to figure this out, including,
but not limited to, uninstalling Visual Studio, reinstalling, disabling all add-ins, running in safe-mode, etc. So it is a tough issue to figure out once you hit it.

But I did solve it, at least for me.

The problem in my case was that if the ‘Search up’ checkbox is checked within ‘Find options’, searching on the Entire Solution fails. In the most extreme example, if you close all documents and then search on "a" (without the quotes) or check the ‘Use Regular
Expressions’ checkbox/dropdown and search on ".*" (without the quotes) and you still get no results.

If you uncheck the ‘Search up’ checkbox, however, then everything appears to work just fine.

This is quite a relief, for having Find/Replace disabled is a really big problem that is tough to get around. Visual Studio is quite crippled without it when dealing with large solutions.

Hopefully, the issue in my case is the same as what others are running into. If it is, then the work-around turns out to be quite easy (once you know!) and hopefully Microsoft will fix this issue in a future version, service patch, or hot fix.

I commented on an existing bug report on this issue here:


I hope this helps…


I feel compelled to report this bug as well, as I just experienced it again.   Relying on the embedded "Find and Replace" function in VS 2005 and 2008 will trip you up.  Today I lost half a day because a function was failing on a null.  Search for hidden
text is always on,  Match case off, Entire Solution, and I never use search up. 

I searched for all the calls to the function and found only one call.  But that call never hit the break points I set around it.  I was beginning to suspect that the code was stepping around the closing curly brace of the previous function to step into the
problem function, (don’t laugh, I have seen it), when I decided to launch Windows Explorer, and used the search within function (which is also problematic, I know), and searched for the call in all .cs and all .xaml files in the project.  And Voola!  There
was another .cs file with the function call.  Now that I have found the call I can fix the problem.


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