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Preferences - Rename


When renaming files certain replacements are hard coded. Currently only : and / are always replaced. These hard coded from patterns are always replaced with the possibly empty pattern specified in the Invalid character substitution field. If for any reason you want a different to pattern for each of the hard coded values, create standard replacement items for each of the hard coded values. See Replacements for more information.

The Space handling setting allows you to control how spaces are modified in each path component in a template when renaming, copying or moving files. The choices are as follows:

No Changes
Spaces are not modified.

Remove Leading/Trailing
Leading and trailing spaces are removed.

Remove Leading/Trailing and Compress
Leading and trailing spaces are removed and sequences of multiple spaces are replaced with a single space. This is Yate's initial setting.

You can control how fields with multiple values are inserted when renaming files. When the Multi Value Delimiter substitution setting is empty, all content following the first occurrence of a multi value delimiter is removed. When, not empty, the specified text will replace the multi value delimiter when a field is inserted. Note that spaces are significant. This setting can be overriden within any rename template.

When renaming files you have no control over the filename extension. Certain players have issues when the filename extension is not lowercase characters. You can force the filename extension to contain only lowercase alphabetic characters when renaming via the Force lowercase filename extensions when renaming setting.

It can be difficult to determine if a filename or path component is too long for an underlying filesystem. The Automatically truncate path components setting attempts to remove some of the burden. When set, filenames and path components will be reduced to fit within 255 bytes based on the system's representation. Note that due to encodings, a truncated component may be less than 255 characters. Bytes were chosen as a unit, as APFS is based on UTF8 characters, HFS+ is based on UTF16 characters, etc. The setting errs on the side of caution. It is possible that extra characters can be manually entered when editing a path component in the Finder. When the setting is enabled it is also used by the following action statements:


Templates are named components used to rename files and/or their containing folders (two levels) . Every template must be given a unique name. The order of the templates in the list controls the order of the File>Rename menu items. You can choose to always keep the list sorted. If you do not keep the list always sorted, you can drag and drop templates to change the order and you can click on the column header to force alphabetic ascending or descending order.

Templates can be marked as hidden. When a template is hidden it does not appear on rename template menus. This is useful when a template is used in an action but is not intended to be run directly.

To create a new template click the + button.

To remove templates, select one or more templates in the table and click the - button under the rightmost table button.

To duplicate a template, select a single template in the table and click the button.

To view and/or modify a template, select a single template in the table and click the button. Double-clicking on a template name will have the same effect.

To export one or more templates so that they can later be imported, select one or more templates in the table and click the button.

You can create move actions entirely based on a selected template via the Create Move Action Wizard. To run the wizard, select a single template and click on the action button..

You can preview the effects of a template by selecting a single template and one or more files in the main window. If no errors are detected and changes would be made, you will have the option to perform the rename immediately. The results displayed in the Log Viewer are the results of renaming each file without regard to actual folder contents or the effect of renaming multiple files.

The order of processing for a rename operation is as follows: (note that the list shows the order for all of the options available in a template)

  1. Build the new file and/or folder names by applying the template to a file's metadata.
  2. Case modification and exceptions are processed.
  3. The field exception is processed.
  4. Replacements are processed.
  5. Spaces are changed to underscores.
  6. Latin-1 transformations take place.
  7. Hard coded replacements, (currently only : and /) are replaced with the invalid character sequence.
  8. Leading periods (.) are removed. A leading period on a Mac typically denotes a hidden file.
  9. Leading/Trailing spaces are optionally removed. Sequences of multiple spaces are optionally replaced with a single space.
  10. Folders are renamed with the same rules as above. All open files in the renamed folder have their paths adjusted.
  11. Files are renamed. If the rename failed, a second attempt is made by adjusting the constructed filenames with the (IfDup),(endIf) portion of the template.

If you have a rename template that you often use and you want to place it on the toolbar you can do so. Essentially the Action 1, Action 2, ... Action 10 toolbar buttons can be associated with any action. An action consisting of a single Rename Files statement can easily be created. As a convenience you can automatically create the action and associate it with a toolbar icon. From the context menu choose Set as Toolbar Action #. An action named Rename: template name will be created and will be associated with the specified toolbar icon. The action will be marked as hidden as there is no advantage to invoke it from the actions menu. A Set as Toolbar Action # menu item with a checkmark implies that the toolbar icon is currently associated with an action.

Additional information can be found in:

Rename Replacements

Rename Exceptions

Alphabetic Case Transformations

The Rename Template Editor