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Search Intelli-sense

The Intelli-sense capabilities of Enterprise Architect are built using Sparx Systems' Code Miner tool. The Code Miner provides fast and comprehensive access to the information in an existing code base. The system provides complete access to all aspects of the original source code, either on the fly as one might in a code editor, or as search results produced by queries written in the Codeminer mFQL language.

This feature is available from Enterprise Architect Release 14.1.


On the Find in Files window, click on the 'Intelli-sense Search' tab at the bottom of the window.


Start >  Explore > Search > Files > Intelli-sense Search

Keyboard Shortcuts

Ctrl+Shift+Alt+F > Intelli-sense Search

The Code Miner Control

This control presents an interface for performing queries on several code bases at once.  The code bases it uses are databases built using Enterprise Architect's Code Miner tool. These databases form a library. The Library can also be shared when deployed as a service.  The queries that can be run are listed and selected using the toolbar.  The control allows easy access to the source code for the queries, for editing and composition.  Queries do not need to be compiled. They are viewed, edited and saved as one would process any source code file.  Queries that take a single parameter can utilize any selection in an open code editor. The interface also supports manual parameter entry for queries that take multiple arguments.

The first control on the toolbar displays the active Analyzer Script name. To its right is a button that allows the script to be edited.  The Analyzer Script specifies the file containing the mFQL queries.

The name of the selected Analyzer Script in the Intelli-sense search control toolbar

The next control is a combo box that lists the available queries in the query file.

The selected query in the Intelli-sense search control toolbar

The next control is an edit combo box. By default a single query parameter is taken from the selected text in an any open code editor, but you can also type the parameter(s) directly into this field. Multiple parameters should be separated by commas. This is followed by the Search button to run the query.  Queries can be edited at any time using the Edit button next to it.

Parameters in Intelli-sense queries defaulting to code editor selection

The results window is a tree control that lists the results of the query grouped by file.

The results of running an intellisense query on Java JDK code base

Code Miner Libraries

Code Miner libraries are a collection of databases that can be used by Enterprise Architect Intelli-sense providers to obtain and query for information across several code bases. Each database is created from the root source code directory of a code base, using a specialized grammar appropriate for its language (C++, Java or C#).

The libraries are created, updated, removed or added in the 'Analyzer Script Editor'. A typical scenario for using this feature would be to create a database for a development project and additional databases for frameworks referenced by the project. Your development database can be updated frequently as code changes accrue, while the static frameworks would be updated less often. Libraries can be searched in a similar way to the 'File Search' tool, but offers advanced search capabilities due to its mFQL language.

  • Multiple domains / frameworks can be searched at once
  • A query can be run in a fraction of the time required for a File Search
  • Queries can be coded to assist with complex search criteria
  • Queries can take multiple parameters
  • All files are indexed based on equivalent UML constructs, allowing intelligent searches producing meaningful results in a modeling setting

Code Miner Query Files

Code Miner queries are maintained in a single source code file which should have the .mFQL extension. A basic set of queries is provided with each Enterprise Architect installation; these can be located in the config\codeminer sub directory. This query file should be named by default in any Analyzer Script you edit.

Before editing any queries it is advisable that you copy this file to a working location and name the copy in any Analyzer Script you use. This way you will always have a reference file to go back to.

Queries are best considered as functions that are written in the mFQL language. As such they have unique names, can be qualified by a single namespace and can specify parameters. The file provides the queries listed in the Intelli-sense control's toolbar. Whenever edits to a query file are saved, the queries listed in the search toolbar combo box will be updated accordingly. This image is an example of a simple query written in mFQL.

Examples of the mFQL intellisense query language

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