You have seen MySQL pattern matching with LIKE ...%. MySQL supports
another type of pattern matching operation based on regular expressions and the
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
If you are aware of PHP or PERL then its very simple for
you to understand because this matching is very similar to those scripting
Following is the table of pattern which can be used along with REGEXP
What the pattern matches
Beginning of string
End of string
Any single character
Any character listed between the square brackets
Any character not listed between the square brackets
Alternation; matches any of the patterns p1, p2, or p3
Zero or more instances of preceding element
One or more instances of preceding element
n instances of preceding element
m through n instances of preceding element
Now based on above table you can device various type of SQL queries to meet
your requirements. Here I'm listing few for your understanding. Consider we have
a table called person_tbl and its having a field called name:
Query to find all the names starting with 'st'
mysql> SELECT name FROM person_tbl WHERE name REGEXP '^st';
Query to find all the names ending with 'ok'
mysql> SELECT name FROM person_tbl WHERE name REGEXP 'ok$';
Query to find all the names which contains 'mar'
mysql> SELECT name FROM person_tbl WHERE name REGEXP 'mar';
Query to find all the names starting with a vowel and ending with 'ok'
mysql> SELECT name FROM person_tbl WHERE name REGEXP '^[aeiou]|ok$';
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