Sunday, May 07, 2006

Rename files, especially pictures, in bulk

Many missionaries I know are regularly snapping digital pics of events, friends, projects and so forth, visually documenting their lives and ministries. I regularly come home from something and copy 5-15 pics from my CLIE or digital camera to my pictures folder. Naturally, I’ve ended up with about a thousand pictures called “DSC00035.jpg” or something similar.

It’s true that there are lots of photo management apps out there, including a free one I use called Picasa, but what if you could tag all your photos easily at the moment you transfer them?

This trick doesn't use tags in the conventional sense of the word, but tags your photos by changing the file name to something recognizable, quickly and easily. Yesterday, for example, I helped host an outreach event and naturally took a bunch of pics. When I got home, I transferred them to my laptop. This morning, when I figured out you could bulk-rename them, I did so.Bulkrename

How do you do it?

Simply navigate to the folder where your pictures are and highlight the ones you want to bulk rename. Here are the instructions from LifeHacker

Once all the files you want to rename are highlighted, press F2, or right-click on one of the files and select Rename. All of your file selections will disappear except for one, but don't panic: Type in your new name and click Enter. That's it! One file will be now be named "renametext" and the others will have sequential numbers in the format of "renametext (1)" and "renametext (2)" and so on.

This is really simple, but I for one can say that I never knew that you could do it. This really does sound like a great way to make files a little more identifiable with hardly any time commitment.

I didn’t know you could do this either, but now that I’ve learned I know I’ll use it a lot. Actually, I use Xplorer2 as my default file explorer and it allows you to automatically append different custom tokens to the end of the file name. Instead of just changing the number, as in the instructions above, you can add a custom text and a custom “token” like date, file attributes, etc.

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