Currently Stash only supports search based on filenames, but to search based on content there is a plugin available which is pretty expensive, is there a free add-on which is available, if not has anyone else tried to get their way around this issue?
While I know this isn't going to be helpful for you now, you should definitely vote and watch the following feature request.
It's definitely something we will tackle at some stage (although I couldn't say when).
As an administrator, I do not want people using server resources to search the entire repository via plugin. There's enough demand for memory and CPU as it is. My suggestion is to clone the repo and search that all you want.
However, maybe you want something that searches the objects stored in the physical repo and then convert those object hash code (my apologies, I don't remember the git terminology) into actual file names/paths? However, you still can't do anything with the results, except test for existence.
The code below is quite convenient, it searches across all stashes files containing "plist" and non-case sensitive "basic" in the filename. any change made to a file passing that is concatenated into test.txt then opened.
for sha in $(git rev-list -g stash); do git ls-tree -r $sha:; done | grep plist | grep basic -i | cut -f 1 | cut -d" " -f 3 | sort | uniq | xargs git show > test.txt; open test.txt
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