How to Easily Batch Rename Files in Mac OS X Yosemite

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I’m sure there are hundreds of unorganized files on your Mac right now. Pictures from your vacation, PDF documents, downloads, TV episodes, and that doesn’t begin to cover it.

The first step to organizing content is giving it a proper name, defining it. Then you figure out where it goes.

That’s where batch renaming comes in, especially when you’re talking about photos, they become messy very fast. Till now, you needed to use a third party app to batch rename files but currently it’s built right into OS X Yosemite.

Let’s take a look at how it works.

Batch process all the things: I love batch processing. And it’s easy to do. You can batch resize images with RIOT, batch watermark them, add a border with Border Maker and compress image size with ImageOptim.

How to Batch Rename Files in OS X Yosemite

First, open Finder and go to the folder where the unorganized mess lies. Select all the files in question and right-click to bring up options.

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You’ll see a Rename ‘X’ items… option. Clicking that will bring up the screen we’re looking for.

Rename Options in Yosemite

I’m going to be using a folder with all the screenshots for my Toggl review as an example. Above, they all have super long and weird names because they’ve been through a couple of apps for processing and each app adds some text to the end of the image. It would be great if I could rename them to something like Toggl 1, Toggl 2 and so on.

In the popup window there are three options – Replace text, Add Text, and Format. Let’s look at these one by one.

Replace Text

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This one is pretty simple. You type in the text you don’t want under Find and then type the new text in the Replace with field.

Add Text

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This option lets you add text to the end or the beginning of the file name.


This is the big one. It’s what I’m guessing most of us are going to be using. It lets you delete the current file name so you can start fresh.

There are a couple of options to play around with here. There’s the Name Format and the Where option. For Name Format I’m choosing Name and Index because I want to add a number to the end of the file name. You can choose an index or date as well.

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The Custom Format field is where you should write in the main text. The text that’s going to be similar on every file. Add a space or a hyphen at the end of this text if you’d like some space between the name and the number.

For the Where option you can specify if you want the number to be placed at the front or end of the file name.

Happy Renaming

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That was pretty easy, wasn’t it? Now go on and rename all the things! But don’t forget to share the new titles with us in the comments below (kidding, make your comment count, please).

Last updated on 03 February, 2022

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