IBM Software support lifecycle

Help with searching

The IBM software support lifecycle search feature allows you to search product titles, version numbers, product identifiers, and alternate product titles (including common abbreviations and previous product names) within the lifecycle data. You can combine search terms (whole or partial words or numbers) with various operators and modifiers to create precise queries for the lifecycle data you need.

You can limit which products are searched by choosing a brand (for example, WebSphere) from the menu beside the search field. If you start your search from a brand page, that brand will be selected for you, but you can change it.

Quick tips

  • Enter only letters, numbers, hyphens (within words) and periods (within version numbers); most other symbols and punctuation marks are not considered during searches (they are treated as spaces), and many symbols have special meanings (see the sections on Operators below).
  • Use double quote marks to search for an exact word or phrase. Note: the quoted word or phrase will match any product that contains that word or phrase.
  • Use the brand selector to limit your search to products in a particular brand.
  • If you don't see all the versions you think should match your product, try adding a space and a period at the end of your search term (e.g., ims{space}{period}).

Search terms

A search term is a sequence of letters and/or digits that occurs in a product title, a version string, or product ID. You may enter one or more terms, separated by spaces. Normally the search will return only those products that contain all the terms you entered (in any order). You can further control the search behavior by using the operators discussed below. Your entire search query, including all terms and operators, is limited to 255 characters.

Search terms are not case sensitive. You can enter WebSphere or websphere and the search will return the same results.

The search engine will return at most 200 results, ordered by product name and version. You can change the default order by using the sorted by menu.


  • Logical operators. Use AND or OR between terms to search for both terms or at least one term. If no logical operator is specified between terms, AND is assumed.
    • Note that AND is stronger than OR, so a search for WebSphere AND Enterprise OR DB2 will match all products that have both “WebSphere” and “Enterprise” in their names, as well as all products that have “DB2” in their names. (The AND operator could be omitted in the previous example with the same results.)
    • Use parentheses to control grouping of terms and operators.
  • Wildcards. Use ? to match any single character, or * to match any sequence of characters. Note that using * at the beginning of a term will increase search time.
  • Exact match. Normally the search engine matches all linguistic forms of your terms in any order. For example, searching for Tivoli manager will match “Tivoli Access Manager” as well as “Management Suite for Tivoli Identity Server”. Use " (double-quotation marks) around a term or phrase to match it exactly.
  • Negation. Use NOT or - (hyphen, must be followed directly by the negated term with no space in between) to specify terms that must not appear in the search results.


Examples of search operators
Operator Example Query results
AND WebSphere AND 5.2

WebSphere 5.2
Returns products that contain the terms “WebSphere” and “5.2”.
OR WebSphere OR DB2 Returns products that contain “WebSphere” as well as products that contain “DB2”.
* Info* Returns products that include words starting with “Info”, such as “Information”, “Informix” and “InfoSphere”.
? ?Series Returns products that include words with a single character followed by “Series”, such as “iSeries”, “pSeries” and “zSeries”

"phrase with wildcard"
"WebSphere Enterprise"

"WebSphere * Edition"
Returns products that contain the exact phrase “WebSphere Enterprise”.

With the wildcard, returns products that contain the words “WebSphere” and “Edition”, separated by one or more other words (such as “Developer” or “Enterprise”).
WebSphere NOT Enterprise

WebSphere −Enterprise
Returns products that contain “WebSphere” but do not contain “Enterprise”.
( ) (WebSphere OR DB2) AND Enterprise Returns products that contain either “WebSphere” or “DB2”, and that also contain “Enterprise”. (Without the parentheses, this search would return products that contain “WebSphere” as well as products that contain “DB2” and “Enterprise”.)

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