Photoshop 7 Batch Renaming Tip

December 17, 2003 - 1:00am ||| 0 Comments | Add new

Fans of Photoshop's Browse window know that one of its most useful features is the ability to automatically rename a selection of image files based on a naming pattern you specify. Being able to rename a pile of digital camera images from "DCS083.jpg, DCS084.jpg," etc. to "2003_Thanksgiving_01.jpg, "2003_Thanksgiving_02.jpg," etc. in a matter of seconds is a joy.

(In Photoshop 7, the Batch Rename… command is in the Browse palette's fly-out menu; in Photoshop CS it's in the File Browser's own menu bar, under Automate.)

A minor frustration with Batch Rename in Photoshop 7 centers on the numbering sequence option. You can choose to have Photoshop add a "Digit Serial Number" (from one to four places) to the filenames, but it always starts at number 1.

What if you've already renamed some images from an event, starting with 001, and now you want to rename some more images, this time starting from 014 or 567 or something? At first glance, it's impossible. So instead, you might modify the document name field, something like "2003_Thanksgiving2_01.jpg, 2003_Thanksgiving2_02.jpg" and so on.

One solution would be to upgrade to Photoshop CS, which has addressed this problem by adding a "Starting Serial Number" field to the Batch Rename dialog. Kind of expensive just for that feature, though. :-)

Here's some help. You can specify a starting serial number for Batch Renamed images in Photoshop 7 via a little workaround:

In the Batch Rename… dialog area where you set up your naming pattern, enter #014# in one of the fields if you want to include a 3-digit serial number starting with 014, in this example. Your chosen files will get renamed to 014, 015, 016, and so on (in addition to any other fields you set). Using this workaround, you can set from one to four digit placeholders (e.g., #0067#), as long as the number is surrounded by the hash symbol (#) and the last placeholder(s) represent your starting serial number.

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