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Enhancing your Search results!

Searching the Chesterfield.gov site is simple, just enter one or more search terms (the words that best describe the information you are looking for) into the search field and hit the Submit button. In response, the search will return a list of matches with the most relevant to your search term(s). If you still cannot find the information you need there are many additional search tools to help you be more specific about what you're looking for. These tools include:

  • Date Filter – Allows you to limit the documents by the date they are created.
  • Refine By Category Filter – Allows you to target specific types of information such as media type or the person the information targets to list a few by selecting one or more categories to narrow your list.
  • Refine By Location Filter – Allows you to narrow the search results returned by the Location (folder) the document appears under.
  • Suggested Results and Related Content – Lists other documents of interest based on the most recommended information for the search term you entered or other documents that may not be in your search but are found in the same location as your search results.

Choosing the right search terms is the key to finding the information you need. Start with the obvious – if you're looking for general information on the voting, try voting. But it's often advisable to use multiple search terms; if you're looking for an address to the General Registrar's office, you'll do better with registrar address than with either registrar or address by themselves. And general registrar address may produce even better or worse results. You might also ask yourself if your search terms are sufficiently specific. But choose your search terms carefully; the search looks for the search terms you chose, so general registrar address will probably deliver better results than general address.  

Basic Search Tips 

To Search For 



To search for a phrase, enclose the phrase in double quotes

"park schedules"

Pages containing the phrase "park schedules" 

To search for documents containing ALL of the words entered, separate each word with "AND".

park and schedule

same as phrase : park schedule  


Pages with both park and schedule.

To search for documents containing ANY one of the words entered, separate each word with "OR".

park or schedule


Pages containing either the word park or the word schedule.

To search for content with words that have a particular prefix, enter the prefix followed by the asterisk



This search would return all pages containing the words that have the prefix "vot", such as vote, voting, and voters.


To search for documents that do not contain add the word NOT before the search term.

park and NOT schedule


This search would return all documents containing the word park but NOT the word schedule.


To search for documents that have the words that are closer together more heavily weighted thus appearing first in the search results, separate the words with the word NEAR.

directory NEAR guide

Returns pages that have the word "directory" near the word "guide" 

Advanced Search Tips 

Advanced search offers additional search features, such as wildcard searches and page property value searches to provide more precise search functionality.

Wildcard Searches 

To Search For 



Words with the same beginning letters


Pages with words that have the prefix vot, such as voters, voting, and vote. 

Words based on

any form of a verb


Pages with any form of a verb. For example, if you enter fly,

the search returns pages that contain flying, flown, flies,

and flew.

Page Property Value Searches 

You can search documents on properties such as file size, file name and the date the document was created. There are two types of search operators that can be used are:

  • Relational property queries - consist of an "at" character (@), a property name, a relational operator, and a property value. For example, to find all files larger than one million kilobytes, use @CMSsize > 1000000.
  • Regular expression property queries - consist of a number sign (#), a property name, and a regular expression for the property value. For example, to find all .avi files, use #filename *.avi.

Relational Operators  

< Less than

<= Less than or equal to

= Equal to

>= Greater than or equal to

> Greater than

!= Not equal to

Search Examples 

To Search For 




Property values in relation to a fixed value

@CMSsize < 100

@CMSsize <= 100

@CMSsize = 100

@CMSsize != 100

@CMSsize >= 100

@CMSsize > 100

Files whose size matches the query

A specific value

@DocAuthor = "Bob Whitley"

Files authored by Bob Whitley 

Values beginning

with a prefix

#DocAuthor George*

Files whose author property begins with George 

Files of any


#filename *.gif

Files with a .gif extension

Files modified

after a certain date

@write > 2006/02/14

Files modified after February 14, 2006

Property Names 

Property Name 




@All chester

Returns documents having the search term appearing in any words, phrases or any document properties. Will not work for numeric values.



#filename *.pdf

Returns all PDF documents.

CMSSize or @size

@cmssize > 10000

File Size Enter file size in kilobytes. You can use greater and less than

operators (>, <) to find content having a file size that is greater or less than the value specified. The example returns all documents greater than 10000KB in size.


@Doctitle *services

Returns documents having a title containing the term "services" 


@DocSubject *services

Returns documents having a subject containing the term "services". 


@ DocComments services*

Returns documents having the search term "services" appearing at the beginning of the document's comments.



Returns documents having the search term appearing in the keywords.


@DocAuthor *Jo*

Author Enter first name<space>last name. Can abbreviate by entering part of either name surrounded by

asterisks (*). For example, *Jo* finds any author whose first or last

name contains those letters.



@datecreated > 2008/03/01 AND @datecreated < 2008/04/01

Based on when the page was created. Date format is YYYY/MM/DD. This example returns any document that was created in the month of March 2008.



@datemodified > 2008/03/01

Based on when the page was last modified. Date format is YYYY/MM/DD. This example returns any document modified after March 1st 2008.



@contents desktop

Returns all documents having the term "desktop" in the body of the document.

Regular Expression Syntax 

Any character except asterisk (*), period (.), question mark (?), and vertical bar (|) defaults to matching itself.

A regular expression can be enclosed in matching quotes ("). It must be enclosed in quotes if it contains a space ( ) or closing parenthesis ()).

The characters *, ., and ? behave as in Windows. They match any number of characters, match (.) or end of string, and match any one character, respectively.

The character | is an escape character. After |, the following characters have special meaning:

- ( opens a group. Must be followed by a matching ).

- ) closes a group. Must be preceded by a matching (.

- [ opens a character class. Must be followed by a matching (un-escaped) ].

- { opens a counted match. Must be followed by a matching }.

- } closes a counted match. Must be preceded by a matching {.

- , separates OR clauses.

- * matches zero or more occurrences of the preceding expression.

- ? matches zero or one occurrences of the preceding expression.

- + matches one or more occurrences of the preceding expression.

Anything else, including |, matches itself.

Between square brackets ([]), the following characters have special meaning.

- ^ matches everything but following classes. Must be the first character.

- ] matches ]. May only be preceded by ^. Otherwise, it closes

the class.

- - range operator. Preceded and followed by normal characters.


Anything else matches itself (or begins or ends a range at itself).

Between curly braces ({}), the following syntax applies.

- |{m|} matches exactly m occurrences of the preceding

expression. (0 < m < 256).

- |{m,|} matches at least m occurrences of the preceding expression. (1 < m < 256).

- |{m,n|} matches between m and n occurrences of the

preceding expression, inclusive. (0 < m < 256, 0 < n < 256).

To match *, ., and ?, enclose them in brackets (for example,|[*]sample matches "*sample").

Filter Results by Date  

To search for all documents that have been added to the site in a certain time period leave the Search value blank and select a date range from the Date Filter drop down.

Other Notes 

      • Queries are case insensitive.
      • Punctuation marks are ignored such as periods and commas.
      • Noise Words - words such as the, all or also are ignored by the search engine. So a search on "the board meeting" is the same as a search on "board meeting" because the word "the" is noise and ignored. Word's in the noise list are treated as placeholders. For example, if you search for "Supervisors and Board", the results could return "Supervisors or Board" and "Supervisors on Board".
      • The search operators AND, OR and NOT are not searchable.
      • To use special characters, such as &, |, ^, #, @, $, (,) in a query enclose the query in quotation marks. For example, " help@chesterfield.gov"
      • To search for a word containing quotation marks, surround the entire phrase with quotation marks and double the quotation marks around the word to be surrounded with quotes. For example, to search for World-Wide Web or "Web" enter "World-Wide Web or ""Web""
      • The relational operators (=, <, >, etc.) cannot be used with 'contents' or 'all'.
      • 'Contents' and 'all' cannot be searched using a regular expression query (#).
      • If '=' is present, wildcard characters can be used.
      • With free-text and phrase queries ($ and @), only words and numbers are recognized. Boolean operators, proximity operators, and wildcards are ignored.
      • If a short-form query not involving 'contents' or 'all' contains '*', '?', or '|' it is automatically treated as a regular expression regardless of what mode is indicated.

Search Result Sections 

· Refine By Location – The "Refine By Location" section of the search page allows you to narrow your search to a certain folder within our site. To select a location click on the location's name.

· Refine By Category - To restrict your search to a specific category, you can select one or more categories from the "Refine By Category" section. This allows you to be more specific about the kind of results you would like to see.

· Search Results Grid – The search results grid lists the search results in order of relevance. A short summary of the document, the date created and the date last modified is listed in addition to the document title. If you are logged on you will also see a "Add to Favorites" link that allows you to add the document to your list of favorites that are viewable on your Profile page.

If the search result is an Event, a Press Release or Bid information additional information is displayed in the grid to the right. This information may also have a "Map It" link which allows you to view a map marking the location of the event and to get driving directions.

· Search Results – The results contain the most relevant web pages found by the search. Within your search results you might see the following types of documents:

    • HTML Content
    • Users and Groups
    • Documents
    • Multimedia (images)
    • Forums
    • XML Content

· Related Content – The Related Content section lists other related documents found in the same location as the search results that were returned. For example, if you searched for police we would populate the Related Content list with other documents found in the Police section of the web site.

· Suggested Results – The Suggested Results list directs you to pages that do not appear at the top of natural search results but are relevant to the search term you entered. For example, if you wanted to search the site for information about how to pay your county utility bill you might enter the term "bill" and you would get a list including people whose name is Bill , bills passed by state legislation and information on how the county pays the bills. None of those results are relevant but they would appear at the top of your search results. The Suggested Results list would direct you to the page containing information about how you can pay your utility bill.

Resetting Searches  

The Reset Search button removes the folder, category and date filters and refreshes the search results based on the current search phrase.

Related Content

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