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I need to sort an attribute table added to the Print composer layout with Alphanumeric characters. I understand this is not desirable but the field is for naming farm paddocks...hard to avoid that. How can I sort by alphanumerically?

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Name: paddock1 paddock2 calf3a calf3b Feedpad1 1 2 3

Please note, I have searched and searched for an answer or idea before posting this.

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Setting in yout screenshot works fine (QGIS 2.18.3), after hitting OK, table is sorted alphanumerically (symbols -> numbers -> text).

enter image description here

If you need handle sorting (for example you want to show text first and than numbers), you can add more sorting rules, something like:

enter image description here

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