Today, we’re going to discuss what happens when you don’t end up liking your file naming conventions. (Every time I think I’ve covered file naming conventions enough, I find something new on this topic to talk about. They are my favorite data management trick, after all. Sorry not sorry.)
So anyway, what do you do when your file naming convention isn’t working well for you? You use a file renaming tool to apply a new naming convention! I use Bulk Rename Utility for Windows, but there other good tools available.
A file renamer lets you add information to your file name, remove information, and move pieces of your file name around, among other things. Don’t like the date at the end of the file name? A renamer can move it to the beginning of the file name, no problem.
The biggest benefit of a file renamer is that you can easily rename a whole set of files at the same time instead of renaming files one-by-one. A file renamer will save you so much time and can mean the difference between being able to rename your files or not.
The one thing to note about a file renamer is that it works best when you start with consistent file names to convert. If your file names are an inconsistent mess, a file renamer is not going to help you at all. But even a little consistency can help you break your files into manageable chunks. A file renamer also demonstrates the benefit of separating information (metadata) in file names with dashes or underscores, as they help you process particular sections of your file name independently of the others.
A file renamer is the type of tool that I don’t need often, but it saves me so much time when I do. I hope that, enlightened of their existence, they will help you too!