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Quickly Rename Windows Files

I learned about this capability recently via There’s similar functionality on Apple Mac computers, which is also explained at that link.

  1. Open File Explorer and then open the folder where the files are located.

  2. I prefer using the Details View found on the View Ribbon.

  3. Select the files to rename. If you wish to rename all the files, press Ctrl+A.

  4. Press the F2 key, and then type the new file name you wish to use. In the example below, I renamed three text files by typing photos_05212022 - a poor wording choice, but it shows the results.

  5. Press the Enter key. Your selected files will be instantly renamed.

Here’s a snapshot of a brief test result on my computer. Notice I did not use slashes as separators in the date. Slashes will cause a file naming error.


I think my main use for this technique is when transferring photos from my camera’s memory card to my PC. My camera names pictures as P plus a six-digit number. It number pictures in sequence as they are taken. If I take pictures over a multi-day period, I will rename them based on where or what I was shooting each day. This makes it easier to organize them into folders later.

Or, maybe co-workers send you files on scheduled basis, but they each name their files in a different manner. You could rename the files so that you recognize their content. Because the resulting file names are numbered, you can tell at a glance if you’ve received all files for processing - if you need 12 files and the last file you have has 10 appended, then two are missing..

After tinkering a bit, I discovered this feature will also rename folders. This feels a bit risky to me and I haven't thought of a way to use the feature on folders.

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