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ONLamp.com: MySQL FULLTEXT Searching

Jun 30, 2003, 07:00 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joe Stump)

"Have you ever wanted to search text stored in your database, but couldn't figure out how to do it efficiently? Are you lazy like me and don't enjoy maintaining reverse indexes, dictionaries, and word scores? You're in luck. The release of MySQL 4.0 has made searching text stored in databases available to the masses.

"MySQL has had FULLTEXT searching in one form or another since version 3.23.23. FULLTEXT indices in MySQL allow database administrators and programmers to designate any character-based field (CHAR, VARCHAR, or TEXT) as a FULLTEXT index, which allows for complex text searching against data stored in those fields.

"This feature is not to be confused with the LIKE function in MySQL. LIKE works more along the lines of a regular expression. On the other hand, FULLTEXT indices are fully indexed fields which support stopwords, boolean searches, and relevancy ratings..."

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