Custom attribute queries and link queries

You can create queries to find work items based on custom attributes and links.

Custom attribute queries

Querying on custom attributes in the query editor is the same as querying on built-in attributes. However, in contrast to built-in attributes that every work item has, custom attributes might be missing from items that were created before the custom attributes were defined. The possibility of a missing custom attribute must be accounted for when you create a query that uses the exists operator. For information about how to synchronize newly added attributes to existing work items, see the support article How to make new custom attributes available in existing work items.

You can use the exists operator to query for work items that have a certain custom attribute set. Alternatively, you can use this operator when it is not possible to query the custom attribute value, as is the case for large string custom attributes. An example is creating a query for all items in a specific iteration that have a Build Notes custom HTML attribute.

Note: You cannot query for text in custom attributes because all text-based searches are performed by using the full-text search option.