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I have a SQL dump with expressions such as youtubehd:2nj6bykw. The 2nj6bykw can also be a different random string. It is always 8 characters long.

I want to replace youtubehd:2nj6bykw with just youtubehd.

How can I do this without replacing it manually, one by one? The SQL dump is over 230000 lines long and has about 200 occurrences of these strings.

I suppose I need a wildcard, but I have no clue about what it is and how I can do this.

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up vote 13 down vote accepted

Please make sure you have a backup in case something goes wrong.

  • In Notepad++ go to Search → Replace
  • In the Find What textbox paste the following: youtubehd:\w\w\w\w\w\w\w\w
  • In the Replace With textbox paste the following: youtubehd
  • Ensure that Search Mode is set to Regular expression
  • Click Replace All

Thanks to KCotreau for pointing out that search mode defaults to Normal and needs to be changed.

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1  
+1 I have been beating myself up trying to figure this out. It should be so simple, but it was not easy to find. I tested this and it does work. I would add: Choose "Regular Expression" for the search type. – KCotreau Jul 21 '11 at 13:15

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