Houdini 20.0 Networks and parameters

Find nodes in a network

How to use the Find dialog to find nodes based on various criteria.

On this page
To...Do this

Select a node by name

In the network editor, choose Edit ▸ Quick Navigate to Node, or press ⇧ Shift + /. A quick find window will pop up near the mouse pointer.

  • Start typing the name of a node in the current network. The window will list the possible completions.

  • Press Enter to select the highlighted completion. Use the arrow keys to select a name from the menu. Press ⎋ Esc to cancel.

  • If the highlighted completion is a container node, you can press / to dive inside. Now typing will auto-complete nodes in the new location.

    You can also press ⇥ Tab to go into the current selection, or ⇧ Shift + ⇥ Tab to go up to the “parent” path.

  • If you want to type a absolute path to a node, you can open the quick find window, then press ⇧ Shift + / again to clear the text field back to the root (/).

Open the find dialog

In the network editor, choose Edit ▸ Find or press ⌃ Ctrl + F or /.

  • Type names or name patterns to search for in the text box at the top of the dialog.

  • Turn on Ignore case to do case-insenstive matches.

  • As you type, matching nodes appear in the table at the bottom of the dialog.

  • Press Enter to select all matching nodes, or use the arrow keys or mouse to double-click a node in the results table.

Move through results

Once there are search results in the table at bottom of the find dialog, you can use the Next and Previous buttons to select each node in the results.

If the find dialog is closed, you can still move through the search results using:

  • Edit ▸ Next matching node and Edit ▸ Previous matching node in the network editor menus.

  • < and >

  • ⌃ Ctrl + G and ⌃ Ctrl + ⇧ Shift + G.

Add search criteria

In the find dialog, click Add filter and choose the filter type to add. You can continue to click Add filter to add more search criteria.

  • You can choose whether all rows must match or any of the rows can match.

  • Click the delete button to the right of a row to remove it.



Click All to require nodes to match all of the filters. Click Any to show nodes that match any of the filters.


Finds nodes by name.

For example, you can set up a “Name matches pattern left_*” filter.

Evaluated Parameter

Finds nodes by the evaluated value of a parameter on the node.

  • You can look up parameters by their internal name (for example, scale) or their human readable label (for example, Uniform Scale). You can use a pattern to match the parameter (for example, scale*).

  • You can choose to find parameters where the value is equal to, greater than, less than, etc. a certain value.

  • You can find string parameter values using a value pattern.

For example, you can set up a “Parameter tx >= 0” filter.

Note that if you want to find certain text in an expression (rather than the evaluated value), you should use the Raw Parameter filter instead.

Raw Parameter

This is similar to Evaluated Parameter, but it matches nodes by the unevaluated, textual value of a parameter on the node. This lets you search the text of expressions, for example, rather than the number the expression evaluates to.

For example, you can set up a “Raw Parameter tx contains $F” filter.

Wrangle Snippets

Finds Wrangle nodes by searching the contents of the VEX snippets. This filter matches snippets containing the given text (you cannot use wildcards in the search text).

(This is a convenience equivalent to adding a Node type filter for nodes whose names end in wrangle, plus a Parameter filter for parameters named snippet containing the search text.)

For example, you can set up a “Wrangle VEX contains @N +” filter.

Parameter State

Finds nodes that have parameters in a certain state.

For example, you can set up a “Parameter State has an expression” or “Parameter State off default” filter.


Finds nodes that are in a certain state, such as has/doesn’t have various flags, or errors/warnings/messages, or a comment. You can also find locked or unlocked asset nodes by searching for has/doesn’t have “asset lock”. You can find nodes with animation or animated expressions by searching for “time dependence”.

For example, you can set up a “State has Bypass flag” filter.


Finds nodes of a certain type.

For example, you can set up a “Type is not Sop *wrangle” filter.

Search syntax

You can also use special search syntax in the search field at the top of the dialog. These let you type equivalents of the various search criteria

  • Bare words are name substring searches. For example foo matches any name containing foo.

    Technically we're just taking the input, putting it inside asterisks, and putting that into the Houdini pattern matching function, so you can use Houdini’s pattern matching syntax here.

  • To match an exact name, put it in quotes: "foo".

  • Use plus and minus to match flags and states. For example, all nodes with the template flag on and no warnings or errors: +template -warning -error. Flags/states accept prefixes, e.g.: +ti -warn.

    States you can search for include all the flag names, as well as comment, warning, error, assetlock (is a locked asset), and time (is time dependent).

  • Raw parameter search: tx=$F ty=2 tz=sin. The operator ~= uses Houdini pattern matching, for example file~=$F.

    If you want to search for a value with spaces, enclose the value in quotes. For example, label~="The *"

  • Evaluated parameter search: ty:0 tx:>5 tz:<=0. The operator ~= uses Houdini pattern matching, for example file:~=*foo*

  • You can use & (“and”), | (“or”) for boolean searches, and parenthesis for grouping. For example: (ty:0 | ty:-5) | +warning NOT (rx:0 & ry:0).

  • Prefix a search by node type with an apostrophe: 'objmerge.

Networks and parameters


  • Network editor

    How to create, move, copy, and edit nodes.

  • Network navigation

    How to move around the networks and move between networks.

  • Connecting (wiring) nodes

    How to connect nodes to each other to make them work together.

  • Network types and node flags

    Flags represent some state information on the node, such as which node represents the output of the network. Different network types have different flags.

  • Badges

    Badges indicate some status information about a node. They usually appear as a row of icons below the name of the node.

  • Find nodes in a network

    How to use the Find dialog to find nodes based on various criteria.

Editing parameters

Next steps


Guru level