If you’re equally annoyed by Confluence’s search, I might have some help.
Documentation says about (leading) wildcards:
Lucene doesn’t allow wildcards at the beginning of your search, but you can format your search as a regular expression as a workaround. For example, you can’t search for hum or ?hum, as they begin with a wildcard, but you can search for /.hum.*/ and find things like hum, human, and inhumane.https://confluence.atlassian.com/doc/confluence-search-syntax-158720.html
So a search for *172* (looking for any occurance of a local IP in your Confluence) yields “no results found for “*172*”.
However, looking for a Regex like “/.*172/.*” will yield results: