Batch renaming with KRename

Renaming a big set of files can be a right chore. For example, if you've just imported a set of digital photos, they'll usually have really unhelpful and undescriptive filenames such as DSC_0000.jpg.

KRename is a graphical tool for KDE that attempts to make the process of batch renaming a large set of files a whole lot more bearable.

Opening the application for the first time gives you this dialogue:

KRename initial dialogue

Both approaches work pretty well, but I'll focus mainly on the wizard style here. In wizard mode, there are three steps, the first of which is picking the files. Rather annoyingly, you can't drag files from Konqueror or Dolphin into the window, but instead have to click in the main pane and select the files in a standard file selector window.

Step 1 of KRename wizard

The next step in the wizard is choosing the operation you want to perform. As well as straight renaming the files, you can also move or copy them into a different folder.

The final step is actually setting up the renaming pattern for your files. In wizard mode, the options for making a custom renaming pattern are more limited, but you do get easy access to adding a renaming prefix, suffix and some common options.

KRename wizard rename pattern

This makes it easier to understand if you don't have a clue how the more complex syntax works, but I'd recommend power users stick with the tabbed interface which gives them the most control over their naming system.

KRename tabbed window rename pattern

Once you've decided your rename pattern, you get a helpful progress window that shows you what's going on as it happens if there are hundreds of files. It also shows you any errors that have occurred, for example if a name conflict has happened. The presentation of the errors in this way makes it nice and clear to identify a problem you might have and head back and fix it before retrying the operation.

There is also a very handy Undo button on the Progress page, so you can easily change your mind even after you've clicked OK.

Apart from the slightly confusing initial question about which interface you want to use and the minor quirk here and there, KRename works very well. Like all good Unix programs, it focuses on one job, and does it well. While I have complained about that initial interface choice at the start, it does serve the purpose of giving the wizard to users who want to do less advanced tasks in a more straightforward way, while not pushing the power users out either with the advanced tab interface.

Avatar for peter Peter Upfold -

Peter Upfold is a technology enthusiast from the UK. Peter’s interest in Linux stems back to 2003, when curiosity got the better of him and he began using SUSE 9.0. Now he runs Linux Mint 9 on the desktop, runs a CentOS-based web server from home for his personal website and dabbles in all sorts of technology things across the Windows, Mac and open source worlds.

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Discussion: Batch renaming with KRename

  1. Binny V A (guest)

    # Posted on 23 February 2008 at 05:50 PM

    I use this regularly - its a very useful tool.

    But if you are brave, you don't need this for batch renaming - <a href="" rel="nofollow">command line</a> is enough.

  2. # Posted on 24 February 2008 at 07:49 AM

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    This story has been submitted to! If you think this story should be read by the free software community, come vote it up and discuss it here:

  3. Jamey (guest)

    # Posted on 24 February 2008 at 12:08 PM

    KRename is great for general renaming, for complex operations (and not for the faint of heart) I suggest checking out qmv from the <a href="" rel="nofollow">rename utils</a> suite. It's a program which opens the directory in a text editor allowing you to effect the changes there. It's handy for complex things when blended with a powerful editor like vim. Not for beginners :)

  4. Anon (guest)

    # Posted on 24 February 2008 at 02:09 PM

    Since I am using GNOME, I prefer thunar's built-in batch renamer. It really is powerful

  5. # Posted on 26 February 2008 at 04:58 PM

    [...] few days ago, I took a look at batch renaming application [...]

  6. # Posted on 28 February 2008 at 11:45 AM

    [...] Enlace: KRename | Vía: FOSSwire [...]

  7. Sandaili (guest)

    # Posted on 21 June 2008 at 11:22 AM

    I think that you can just drag and drop files now in the latest version. At least it works for me...

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