Filtering Outline by Column Content

In Eco Pro it was possible to filter the outline content by columns , using notepads. Can I achieve a similar result in Omnioutliner?

If you’re in OO5, you can use the search box to specify filters based on column contents and save the filters. Is that what you’re looking for? Such a long time since I used Ecco that I don’t remember how it worked there.

I would like a filter that displays all of the outline items for which any comment is entered into a column topic. Ecco Pro did this beautifully with the “notepad” function. I’ve experimented with the search box and filters, but cannot get what I described above.

Not exactly sure if this helps, but here goes. In Ecco Pro, one could have the same information displayed in different configurations in separate tabs. These were Notepads. If I closed a file, I could have it re-open with the same Notepads displayed in separate tabs.

In OmniOutliner, when you enter your search string in the Filter Box, you can select either “Batch Find” or “Filter”. “Batch Find” keeps the entire outline visible in the main window, and in the Sidebar shows only those items that match your search criteria. But if you select “Filter”, the outline in the main window is filtered to show just those items whose columnar data matches the filter.

The difference between that and Ecco - and this is a big difference for me - is that in Ecco, the filtered view (or Notepad) would show grayed-out parent items of the filter-selected rows, so that you had complete context. In OmniOutliner, you get only the items (or rows) that match the filter criteria. With no parents to provide context.

So OO comes close to what Ecco did, but fails to match it. And that lack of context is, for me, a crippling problem. The outlines I create require context for filtered items. It’s a feature request I’ve made, and I hope it makes it.


The unique capability of Ecco Pro was the ability to display, in a Notepad, ALL of the outline items that had a comment in the column of the same name. Running a search string in OO only selects outline items, or column contents, that match the search string. I’m looking to display all of the outline items that have any comments in the column.

Certainly, the greyed-out parents items were a bonus feature in Ecco Pro. Th addition of both of these capabilities to OO would be wonderful!

Sounds like it would be helpful if our saved filters had an “is not empty” popup option alongside their current options (“is”, “is not”, “begins with”, etc.).

That said, I think you can do what you’re looking for right now by using the “is like” option: try setting the filter to “Column” “is like” “?*”. In the is like pattern matcher, ? is a wildcard that matches any character, while * is a wildcard that matches any number of additional characters. Thus, ?* is a pattern which will match one or more characters in the target column, which sounds like what you’re asking for.

Hope this helps!


Wow!!! (kcase) Your strategy does exactly what I need. This opens up many display options for my projects. Thank you for the solution.

Is it possible to hide a selected column (or columns) only in a filtered view, but have all those columns display in the unfiltered view? Also, can column locations be moved in a filtered view, leaving the original column locations in the unfiltered view?

It doesn’t seem like this works in OOPro 5.3.4.

Filter>Column>“is like”>"?*"

returned lots of rows where the field for the filtered column was empty.