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Tips:Use the CONTAINS Operator as an Alternative to the INDEX Function
As part of the decommissioning effort for sasCommunity.org this article/tip has been migrated to communities.sas.com.
The new home for this article/tip is Use the CONTAINS Operator as an Alternative to the INDEX Function (https://communities.sas.com/t5/SAS-Tips-from-the-Community/SAS-Tip-Use-the-CONTAINS-Operator-as-an-Alternative-to-the-INDEX/m-p/475750#M174)
The CONTAINS or ? operator can be used to search a character variable for a user-specified string. This operator is case-sensitive, and can only be used within a WHERE statement. CONTAINS is similar to the index function, however, it does not provide the position of the character string within the variable.
The data steps below are equivalent. CONTAINS and ? are interchangeable.
data check; set sashelp.zipcode; where countynm contains 'z'; run; data check; set sashelp.zipcode; where countynm ? 'z'; run;