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Here's my problem: I know I've posted something on Stack Overflow about a particular topic. I know how to search all my answers with a given keyword, and that feature works well. But, if I don't find anything, I assume that it must have been a comment that I posted on the subject, and I'd like to be able to find it, and the question it belongs to.

I have read:

this question, this question, and this question on Meta.

Basically, all the responses to those are about 3 years old, so it seems reasonable (to me) to ask this again ...

I've also tried just searching on Google with the keyword(s), my SO username (which I guess unfortunately is (a) not that unusual, and (b) a substring of other words, like unfortunately!), and, without much success.

Is there a Stack Exchange API or query that I could run to search my comments, using a keyword or keywords?

I did see one response by Jeff Atwood in one of the questions linked to above indicating that the (2009) inability to do this was annoying him, too, so hopefully I'm not the only one who's tried to do this.

share|improve this question
+1 @Nate I didn't see yours when I posted mine. But I also asked for some limited retag/folder features in my question. – bonCodigo Jan 7 '13 at 14:15
Something is very wrong with this system when I post this question 4 months ago, it gets closed almost immediately (despite having upvotes, with no downvotes), and then finally is allowed to be re-opened (as originally posed) and voted on months later. But, hey, at least I should be happy that I finally have enough rep points to actually participate here and downvote a few of the posts I disagree with :( ... eagerly awaiting this comment to be removed, like my last comment here. – Nate Jan 7 '13 at 22:38
See if the answer here helps. – yorkw Jul 19 '13 at 1:59
@yorkw, yes, it definitely does! Although I'd love it to be built into the stack exchange web application itself, your query seems to do what I wanted. If you'd like to post your answer again here, I will accept it as a solution. Thanks. – Nate Jul 19 '13 at 5:33
up vote 12 down vote accepted

I have created a data explorer query to search a post by comment texts and userId:

SELECT Id AS [Comment Link], Score, Text 
  FROM Comments 
 WHERE UPPER(Text) LIKE UPPER('%##CommentText##%')
   AND UserId = '##UserId##'

I have also created a query to search for multiple keywords:

You can edit the query to customize it for your use.

share|improve this answer
Just a heads-up that, for example, if you want to search for comments, using a stack overflow user Id, you would replace meta.stackoverflow in your data explorer query URL with just stackoverflow. – Nate Apr 24 '14 at 6:16
Yup @Nate. You have to switch the site you want to search in. I have provided the link for Meta.SO. – hims056 Apr 24 '14 at 6:22

I am adding this answer based on the discussion I had after posting a very similar question. It's truly a great feature if we can have it. I proposed the feature based on Stack Overflow inbox and comments tab.

Each time we want to find some interesting questions/answers that we encountered/interacted, currently there is only one way. Which is very tedious.

  1. Go one by one each page of the comments
  2. Go one by one each page of inbox
  3. Go one by one for each vote...

It can consume lots of time obviously.

So along the most basic keyword search on comments/responses/inbox I suggest having following bonuses as well:-

  • Let user categorize them with their own tags (limited number of tags allowed for user based on reps)

  • Add into folders (with limited numbers of folders allowed per user based on reps) like in Google inbox ...

share|improve this answer
I think the only thing right now that we can't search in our inbox is comments, so once we get that it will cover everything. – Lance Roberts Jan 8 '13 at 14:56
@LanceRoberts you are a generous, supportive meta Stacker. :-) – bonCodigo Jan 8 '13 at 15:08
@bonCodigo nice thought you have given. +1 from my side! – Arup Rakshit Jan 8 '13 at 17:58

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